Belfast Telegraph

Service of thanksgiving held to celebrate long life of Billy, 106, Northern Ireland's oldest man

By Sara Neill

A service of thanksgiving has been held for Northern Ireland's oldest man who has died aged 106.

Billy Noble passed away peacefully at his Jordanstown home last Thursday.

With seven birthday cards from the Queen and seven medals from the President of Ireland under his belt, he celebrated his 106th birthday in January.

Then, Billy said the key to his long life was clean living, with no drinking or smoking.

But reflecting on his life, Billy's son Colin said that was typical of his father.

"He had a great sense of humour and he would've said that with a twinkle in his eye. He did all the wrong things, in terms of what you are or are not supposed to eat," he said.

"He loved apple pie with cream, and he loved ice cream. Everything that you're not supposed to take too much of he did, whether it was Ulster fries or sugar. He loved sugar - it's probably the main reason he was here so long." Mr Noble was born on the Limestone Road in north Belfast in 1909, and moved to Jordanstown after marrying his wife Maude in 1938. She died in 2003.

The couple went on to have three children - Colin, Denis and Desmond - and Billy was a grandfather of three and great-grandfather of one.

He worked in the civil service for 50 years, and was a former chair of the Jordanstown school for the deaf and blind.

Belfast Telegraph


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