Albert Douglas Veness, known as ‘Doug’, will celebrate his 100th birthday on Sunday, with a party at the Hydro Hotel this weekend.
And according to his daughter Helen, Doug, of Jay Close, Eastbourne, has lived ‘a charmed life’.
He was born in 1915, in Seaford Road, and was one of four brothers.
He went to St Andrew’s School and then Bedewell, which is where the fire station is now.
At the age of 14, Doug started out as a post office messenger, and eventually worked his way up to become postmaster in Pulborough until he retired aged 60.
Doug married his wife Helen in July 1940, before he went off to war, as a petty officer in the Navy. He was in the fleet air arm, although he didn’t see much fighting.
He was posted to Ceylon and India, and said he used to put on entertainment such as comedy sketches to keep spirits high.
After three years at war, he returned home, and he and his wife Helen had two children, Helen and Tony.
Now his family stretches across five generations, and he has two granddaughters, three great-grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren.
When asked the secret to a long life, Doug said, “Lots of exercise, and being married to my wife. Seventy years we were together. She died five years ago.
“When I retired at 60 my son and I decided to do long distance walking. Prior to that I did racing cycling.”
His daughter Helen, who takes him out for coffee every morning, said, “He has just been an amazing dad. He has always been there for me. He has lived a charmed life.”