Former nurse Joan Rich completes final lap of Felixstowe park on 102nd birthday

A former nurse has completed her 102nd lap of a park in Suffolk - on her 102nd birthday. 

Joan Rich - aka 'Joan of Park' - has been doing the challenge to raise money for NHS charities.

To mark the occasion, there was a guard of honour from the Royal Military Police and cheers from children from the local school as she crossed the finishing line at Allenby Park in Felixstowe.

During lockdown, Joan set herself a goal of walking 102 laps of the park before she turned 102 on September 11, following in the footsteps of Bedfordshire's Captain Sir Tom Moore.

Local schoolchildren congratulated Joan on her achievement. Credit: PA

Joan was one of the first people to visit the park on April 22 when it reopened after shutting due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Using her frame, or pushing her wheelchair, she walked a 560-metre route from her home in Felixstowe, around Allenby Park, and back.

Over the last few months, whenever the weather was good, she would get out and complete another lap of the park - keeping track of her progress as she went.

By the time the challenge had finished on Friday, she had raised just short of £25,000 and had walked more than 35 miles.

"I feel very humbled," Joan told ITV News Anglia after completing the challenge.

"Diane (her daughter) is always behind me and keeps me going."

Daughter Diane added: "She's done really well. It's typical of Joan, she sets a goal and goes for it. She doesn't give up and that's how she's been all her life. She's an inspiration."