Scotland’s oldest man today celebrates his 111th birthday.
Alfred Smith, from the village of St Madoes in Perthshire, was born on March 29, 1908 in Invergowrie.
He had five brothers, all born to John and Jessie Smith, and spent much of his childhood in Perthshire. He attended Invergowrie Primary School and then Dundee’s Harris Academy.
In 1927, at the age of 19, he emigrated to Canada with four of his brothers. He came back to Scotland five years later and went on to drive lorries.
During World War Two he was in the Home Guard, then went on to marry his wife, Isobel when he was 29.
They raised a family together at a farm in Kinfauns, with daughter Irene and son Allan.
Isobel Smith died over 15 years ago, aged 97. Alfred’s son Allan, who worked on the family farm for 40 years, died in 2016.
In a previous interview, Alfred believes the secrets to life longevity are pretty simple.
“Porridge is helpful and having a job you enjoy,” he said
“I like to think I’ve lived a decent life. I do ask myself – why me? Why have I lived so long when others haven’t?”
Alfred shares a birthday with England’s oldest man, Bob Weighton, who lives in Hampshire.
He still cooks and shops for himself and takes himself out the house with a little bit of help from his walking aid, which now has a new ‘Bob 111’ numberplate.
The former engineer and teacher and great-grandfather of 25 has said that the secret to living for so long is simply “avoiding dying.”
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