World’s oldest man to celebrate 112th birthday alone in Covid-19 self-isolation

The world’s oldest man will be forced to celebrate his 112th birthday alone tomorrow thanks to the coronavirus outbreak gripping the UK.

Bob Weighton’s birthday is usually a joyous occasion as pupils from a local school come to sing him songs and the mayor even pays him a visit at his care home.

But celebrations have now been cancelled this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic which has put the entire country on lockdown.

The great-grandfather-of-25 became the oldest man in the world last month after the death of the previous record holder, Chitetsu Watanabe from Japan.

Retired lecturer Bob, from Alton, Hampshire, said: “There are no birthday celebrations, they have all been cancelled. I’m in isolation.

“I love meeting new people so that hasn’t been ideal, but I’m not too bothered about the birthday itself.”

Bob was 10 when the Spanish Flu swept around the world in 1918, killing between 50 and 100 million people.

But he lived through it and despite having a “very good memory”, he only remembers the pandemic through history books he read later in life.

He worked as an English teacher but spent most his life as a lecturer in marine engineering.

He previously said he was worried about the the coronavirus outbreak and has been taking extra care of his cleanliness and washes his hands more frequently.

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Bob’s grandson Magnus, 48, said he’s not worried about Bob’s health but that he would get bored in isolation as he’s a “very sociable person”.

The retail specialist bought Bob an iPad so that he can still stay in touch with the family through Facetime in these testing times.

The dad-of-two said: “Originally Brendoncare wanted to organise a birthday party like they do for him every year.

“Children from the local school come and sing songs for him and it’s just a wonderful and joyous occasion.

“But now there are no plans for any kind of celebration, we’ll be ringing him throughout the day but that’s it.

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“He’s in isolation but he’s doing alright.

“I’m not too worried about Bob, even during these times, because he’s healthy, he’s not had visitors and he’s a resilient man.

“He’s a very sociable person, which I think is the most difficult part for him, because he loves being around people and having a chat.

“But the care home also does a phenomenal job as well making him feel comfortable.”

He added: “I got him an iPad so we can all Facetime him and he can stay in touch with the family.

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“But I haven’t gotten him a birthday present because you can’t get a man like him a gift. He’s seen it all.

“But he’s also very ecologically conscious so he doesn’t want anything he doesn’t need.”

Bob was born in Hull on March 29 1908, the same day as the UK’s oldest woman, Joan Hocquard.

He is a father-of-three and has 10 grandchildren and 25 great-grandchildren.

  • Family
  • Coronavirus

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