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'Pure luck': UK citizen on becoming 'world's oldest man' at 111 years

John Alfred Tinniswood was born in 1912 - the same year the Titanic ship sank - and eats fish and chips every Friday. The previous world's oldest man Gisaburo Sonobe, 112, from Japan, died on March 31, as per reports.

Edited By: Aveek Banerjee @AveekABanerjee London Published on: April 06, 2024 15:00 IST
John Alfred Tinniswood, world's oldest man
Image Source : X John Alfred Tinniswood, the world's oldest man at 111

London: A 111-year-old citizen from the United Kingdom has become the world's oldest man, by following his diet of fish and chips every Friday, so he claims. John Alfred Tinniswood was born in 1912, the same year the Titanic ship sank, after the previous world's oldest man Gisaburo Sonobe, 112, from Japan was confirmed to have died on March 31, the Guardian reported.

Insisting that the secret to his long life was "pure luck", Tinniswood told Guinness World Records, "You either live long or you live short, and you can’t do much about it." He was born in Liverpool in 1912 and now lives in a care home in Southport. Tinniswood is reportedly unfazed by his newfound status as the oldest man in the world, after becoming the UK's oldest in 2020.

"Doesn’t make any difference to me. Not at all. I accept it for what it is," he said. Tinniswood turned 100 in 2012, after which he received a birthday card each year from the late Queen Elizabeth II, who was his junior by almost 14 years. "Always do the best you can, whether you’re learning something or whether you’re teaching someone," he said while giving advice to younger generations.

On his diet, Tinniswood said he gets a fish supper on every Friday at his home. "I eat what they give me and so does everybody else. I don’t have a special diet... If you drink too much or you eat too much or you walk too much, if you do too much of anything, you’re going to suffer eventually," he added.

'Still able to do things unassisted'

"The world, in its way, is always changing. It’s a sort of ongoing experience … It’s getting a little better but not all that much yet. It’s going the right way,” he said when asked about his observations on the evolving world around him. Tinniswood met his wife, Blodwen, at a dance in Liverpool and the couple enjoyed 44 years together before she died in 1986.

Interestingly, the 111-year-old man is still able to perform daily tasks independently, he gets out of bed unassisted, listens to the radio to keep up with the news and still manages his own finances. The man is old enough to live through two World Wars and is the world's oldest surviving male veteran of the Second World War, working in an administrative role for the Army Pay Corps.

In addition to accounts and auditing, his work involved logistical tasks such as locating stranded soldiers and organising food supplies. Tinniswood is also a lifelong Liverpool FC fan, born just 20 years after the football club was founded in 1892 and has lived through all eight of his club’s FA Cup wins.

Before Tinniswood and Sonobe, Jiroemon Kimura from Japan lived to the age of 116 years 54 days and died in 2013. The world’s oldest living woman and oldest living person overall is Spain’s Maria Branyas Morera, who recently celebrated her 117th birthday.

ALSO READ | World's oldest person celebrates 117th birthday in Spain: Know secret to her long life

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