A 100-year-old former England women’s hockey player is thought to be the oldest living recipient to have received an honorary degree.
Hilda Moore was one of over 250 women to receive a physical education degree from the University of Bedfordshire after they had previously been banned from receiving them.
It follows a six-year campaign to recognise the degree status of former PE students’ courses
Aged 100, and 75 years since she played for England in hockey, Hilda began her training in 1940 and went on to represent England in 1947.
Earlier this year, Hilda revealed the secret to living a long and happy life after celebrating her 100th birthday.
She said that ‘loving a good joke, keeping fit and active, and always having a tipple before bed!’ were the key ingredients.
Born in Bradford, she later moved to Fife, Scotland, as a boarder at St Andrews. From a young age, Hilda enjoyed sports, and throughout her life played lacrosse, hockey, tennis, cricket, golf and bridge, as well as swimming and diving.
Alongside her hockey career, she trained as a PE teacher at Bedford College.
After marrying, she later learnt to become a farmer as she went along, rearing chickens for meat and eggs.
Jackie Gregory, who studied at Bedford in the early 1960s and helped to lobby for the students, said: “It’s just absolutely amazing that, after all this time, our quest – as we call it – has come to fruition and the women’s PE courses are going to be recognised in this way.”
Bedford Hockey Club’s Walking Hockey players, Steph Daniels and Anita Gabrielle, both former students at Bedford Physical Education College themselves, were also instrumental in gaining this recognition for former students.