A great grandmother born on Leap Day will turn 100 later this month, despite only ever having celebrated 25 ‘official’ birthdays.

Retired primary school teacher Hilary Don-Fox was born on February 29, 1920.

As her birth coincided with Leap Day, which occurs once every four years, Hilary is thought to be one in just five million leaplings worldwide - and has only seen her official birth date come around 24 times in her life.

But later this month, Hilary will celebrate her centenary on her official birthday, February 29, 2020, marking the 25th time she has seen this date.

Her granddaughter Amelia Ashton-Jones, 44, of the British Olympic Association, said: “Having a leap year birthday is very rare indeed. Reaching 100 takes it to another dimension.

Hilary in her early years

“We just hope she stays in good health. It is going to be quite a party.”

Hilary, who has seen 18 different Prime Ministers during her lifetime, will celebrate her birthday surrounded by six grandchildren and five great grandchildren, at her care home in Dorset, Gillingham.

Hilary Don Fox
Hilary as a teenager

Before training to be a teacher at Wallop School in Weybridge, Surrey, she worked on a farm during the Second World War.

Amelia added: “She is very excited now. When we mention her age she says ‘Am I really?’

“Her family has defined her life. She has never complained, she has a ‘can do’ attitude, and always stays positive.”

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The odds of being born on February 29 are believed to be one in 1,461, or.068 per cent.

Other famous leaplings include Godfather actor Alex Rocco, rapper Saul Williams, Get Shorty actor Dennis Farina, composer Gioacchino Rossini, and jazz musician Jimmy Dorsey.