Faith is the secret to long life for former church minister on his 100th birthday

Faith is the secret to long life for former church minister on his 100th birthday zoom

Faith is the secret to long life for a former church minister who celebrated his 100th birthday alongside wife Kate at Bramley Court care home where they both live.

Harold Willimott, marked the milestone with friends and family at a special party organised by the team and enjoyed his favourite meal of steak and chips on the day itself.

Special decorations were put up and Harold received a telegram from the King to celebrate the landmark event, as well as a birthday cake prepared by the home’s chef.

When asked about the secret to his long life, Harold outlined the importance of his faith and thanked the team for arranging such a memorable gathering.

“The secret to my long life is that I am a Christian. My faith in Jesus is one of the most important things in my life. I also kept active by playing lots of golf,” he said.

“Myself and Kate had a wonderful evening celebrating my birthday with my favourite meal with friends and family and I want to thank Bramley Court for making it such a special occasion.”

Born in Alton Broad near Lowestoft, Harold worked as a mechanic for 25 years, operating his own garage before leaving to become a Baptist Minister in Leicestershire.

Harold then moved on to Haddenham Baptist Church where he served the spiritual needs of the community for 27 years until his retirement.

“I enjoyed meeting and caring for people. Some of them were real characters,” he said.

“I was passionate about involving young people in the church community, encouraging them to play music and leading classes playing my father’s violin.

“We would perform during Sunday services, and were often requested to play more songs, with congregants in no rush to leave!

“But I remember one lady who once told me, ‘it’s about time you stopped,’ when I asked if I had preached for long enough!”

The centenarian still holds regular services at Bramley Court which have proved a big hit with fellow residents.

Harold and Kate met late in life and have been married for 27 years. The pair have six children as well as many grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Care home manager Judith Wroe added: “We are thrilled to be celebrating Harold’s 100th birthday with him.

“He is much loved in the home by the team and the other residents who always enjoy his services on Sundays and the many stories he has to share. We are so grateful for the key role he plays.

“His positivity and kindness is an inspiration to us all and we were honoured to be able to welcome Harold and Kate’s family into our home to mark this momentous occasion.”