George gets to century not out

Geoff Wilkinson
Geoff Wilkinson

A former Standard employee has a ‘sense of achievement and gratification’ after reaching his 100th birthday.

George Wilkinson celebrated his birthday last Monday, April 6, with a family get-together at Wyberton Parish Hall which included an exhibition of memorabilia by the World War Two museum and a visit from the Mayor of Boston Coun Alison Austin.

Geoff Wilkinson

Geoff Wilkinson

Asked how he felt to have reached 100, Mr Wilkinson said: “With a perception and sense of achievement and gratification of ‘having reached the century – not out’, more so because I am blessed with good health and being active.”

He attributes a lot of his long life to genetics – his great-grandmother, born in 1817, lived to be 98 and was alive when George was born in 1915. One of her sons lived to be 97.

Mr Wilkinson said: “I believe I have inherited some of her genes. However, having said that a lot depends on an individuals lifestyle.”

He said he has never smoked cigarettes and said that he cycled all his life up to the age of 95 - including a 20-mile round trip for work for many years.

“There is a saying: ‘use it or lose it’,” said Mr Wilkinson. “There is also a need to keep the brain active with an interest in a subject or theme which needs thought, also to keep the body and legs active by regular movement - even if it is the activity of everyday life in the home.”

He also advised to eat plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit but down the ration of meat.

Finally he said: “Upon retirement from employment, think positive and count, your blessings.”

Mr Wilkinson began working as an apprentice compositor at The Standard in June 1930, at the age of 15, in the printing production department and, apart from six years during the war, worked for the company until April, 1980.

Following this, he worked part-time as a copyreader.