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‘Big character’ 103-year-old Tom Jones following in Captain Tom’s footsteps

The lively great-grandfather is pictured looking dapper in a tuxedo and sipping a cocktail on his online fundraiser which has smashed its target.

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Tom Jones, 103, walks laps of the garden at his care home in Bexleyheath, Kent, with activity co-ordinator Debbie Rutty (Gareth Fuller/PA)

Tom Jones, 103, walks laps of the garden at his care home in Bexleyheath, Kent, with activity co-ordinator Debbie Rutty (Gareth Fuller/PA)

Tom Jones, 103, walks laps of the garden at his care home in Bexleyheath, Kent, with activity co-ordinator Debbie Rutty (Gareth Fuller/PA)

A 103-year-old with a taste for adventure is following in the footsteps of Captain Sir Tom Moore to give thanks to healthcare workers.

Tom Jones, “not the singer”, he says, has been racking up the miles as he walks around the garden at his care home.

The lively great-grandfather is pictured looking dapper in a tuxedo and sipping a cocktail on his online fundraiser which has already smashed its target.

He has been living at Groveland Park care home for the past nine years, where staff say he is a “big character” beloved by all.

Mr Jones proudly told the PA news agency how he had both his coronavirus vaccine doses in January and marked his 103rd birthday on Tuesday.

To celebrate he said he wanted to express his gratitude to healthcare staff for their work during the pandemic.

He said: “I was so happy that I can help in a way.

“I wanted to highlight the NHS, the care home and the GPs.”

The fit and healthy centenarian has been taking to the garden every day and donations to his chosen charity have been stacking up.

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Tom Jones, 103, walks laps of the garden at his care home in Bexleyheath, Kent (Gareth Fuller/PA)

Tom Jones, 103, walks laps of the garden at his care home in Bexleyheath, Kent (Gareth Fuller/PA)

PA

Tom Jones, 103, walks laps of the garden at his care home in Bexleyheath, Kent (Gareth Fuller/PA)

So far Mr Jones has raised more than £1,800 for Greenwich & Bexley Community Hospice – smashing his target of £103.

“I did 1.44 miles on Wednesday and that’s not bad for 103”, Mr Jones said.

Groveland Park care home manager Nicola Ireland is full of praise for Mr Jones.

She told PA: “He’s incredible.

“He’s amazing, he’s really on the ball.

“For a gentleman that’s 103 he’s very fit, he’s very knowledgeable, he’s got full capacity.

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Captain Sir Tom Moore raised millions for the NHS (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

Captain Sir Tom Moore raised millions for the NHS (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

PA

Captain Sir Tom Moore raised millions for the NHS (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

“He just lives life to the full.

“He did say he would like to do 1,000 (laps) and we sort of said ‘Tom you’re 103’ but who knows?

“Tom does what he wants to do, he’s a big character.”

The fundraiser is available at: https://uk.gofundme.com/f/tom-jones-103charity-walk.

PA


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