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Is Jack at 105 the oldest man in Black Country?

By Black Country Bugle  |  Posted: April 03, 2014

By Dan Shaw

  • Jack Brown as a baby

  • Jack and his wife Grace on their wedding day

  • Jack as a young man

  • Jack at 105

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RETIRED draughtsman Jack Brown has celebrated his 105th birthday at his residential care home in Penn, Wolverhampton, with a sing-along to his favourite big band music.

But is Jack, born on March 17, 1909, in the reign of the Queen's great-grandfather, Edward VII, the oldest person in the Black Country?

Jack was born in Bath but moved to Bilston in the 1930s, after he married his wife Grace, and there they brought up their four children, Gill, Christopher, Michael and Lesley.

He has four grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

During the war Jack's poor hearing meant he was not called up for active service but he still played a big part in the war effort, helping to design aircraft engines.

Jack worked for a number of local engineering firms but retired from Caven Engineering when in his 70s.

Jack met his wife Grace in 1937 and they were married at Bath Abbey. Grace passed away in 2001 and Jack, always an independent man, lived on his own for the next 10 years. However, Jack's deafness and failing eyesight meant that he eventually had to move into a care home. "But he never complains," said his daughter Gill Nader, from Tettenhall. "He has always been a very positive person.

"He was a good father," said Gill, "and always had time for us and encouraged us.

"We could ask him anything and he had the answer. He is a very intelligent man, as well as hard-working and artistic.

"He loved photography and would go with my mother to the countryside and take photographs."

The oldest living person in the UK whose age has been verified is Ethel Lang of Barnsley, who will celebrate her 114th birthday on May 27.

If you know anyone in the Black Country who is older than Jack please email editor@blackcountrybugle.co.uk or write to 41 High Street, Cradley Heath, B64 5HL, or log on to www.blackcountrybugle.co.uk

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