A lifelong cyclist decided that the best way to celebrate his 100th birthday yesterday was with a bike ride - like every single other day.
Wilf Westbrook rode to the shops on his tricycle to buy a newspaper on his special day - a ritual he has started the day with since as a small child he rode out to collect kindling for the fire over which the family would cook porridge.
“I’ve always been active and I have been very lucky with my health,” he told the Northern Echo.
“These days I have a bit of a dodgy knee but otherwise I am fine. You just have to keep on going.”
He went on to earn money delivering Sunday newspapers on his bike as a teenager in the villages around Stokesley.
In 1946 he joined the Uxbridge Bicycle Polo Club, and in 1958 he moved back to North Yorkshire, helping in his father’s garage business.
Until recently his dog rode in a cart on the back of Wilf’s tricycle.
His niece, Pat Askins said: “My uncle is inspirational and a much loved character in Stokesley. I think some people have no idea that he is heading for his 100th birthday because he is so active.”
After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.