Cherie Howie is a reporter for the Herald on Sunday.

NZ's oldest new immigrant dies, 103

Louise Sydes. Photo / Herald on Sunday
Louise Sydes. Photo / Herald on Sunday

The country's oldest new immigrant has died, aged 103.

Louise Sydes left her rest home in Kent after a council decision to shut it down, moving 18,000km to live with her daughter and son-in-law on Auckland's Hibiscus Coast.

Sydes' daughter Sue Reardon said her mother had suffered a series of strokes since Easter.

"She was ready to go."

Reardon and other family were grateful Sydes was given a special three-year visitor visa, approved by Associate Immigration Minister Kate Wilkinson, when she arrived in New Zealand in November.

"She said she wanted to stay here till she flopped. She really enjoyed the summer and being outside in the sunshine."

Sydes will be farewelled at Silverdale on Tuesday before family take her ashes back to England. They will be scattered in a Kent forest where her late husband Jim worked, Reardon said.

- Herald on Sunday

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