A RETIRED Stourbridge lorry driver has celebrated his 100th birthday and shows no signs of putting the brakes on yet.

Sprightly Jack Jones received more than 50 cards including one from The Queen on the big day, which he marked with a party at the Carlisle Hall.

Such is his popularity, one friend even flew over from sunny California to wish him a happy birthday.

Jack, who still lives in his own home in Enville Place, said of his grand old age: "I don't feel 100!"

The jovial centenarian was born in Enville - but has lived most of his life in Stourbridge.

He developed what was to become a lifelong passion for transport when he started his first job at 14 at a private house in Blakedown. He used to do odd jobs, including looking after the cars - an interest which soon saw him promoted to the post of trainee mechanic at his boss's firm - Goodwin, Foster and Brown's.

There he learned his trade, but as soon as he'd passed his driving test he was keen to get on the road - and a career combining motor mechanics and driving for different firms followed.

In the meantime he married his sweetheart Winifred at Stourbridge Registry Office on Christmas Eve in 1939, when the venue used to be in Hagley Road - coincidentally the same road in which the couple met while out walking one evening.

During the war the couple both worked at Longbridge - Winifred in the sewing department and Jack helped to build aircraft including the 'Fairy Battle' and the 'Short Stirling' before moving to Castle Bromwich to work on the Spitfire.

Jack and Winifred never had any children and spent most of their married life living in Greyhound Lane, Norton, while Jack spent the remainder of his working life as a long distance lorry driver.

He retired at 66, but his love of the roads saw him continue to drive a car for another 30 years - until his licence expired when he was 96.

On today's traffic, he said: "It seems selfish, the word patience has disappeared."

And when asked what his secret to a long life has been, he said: "I've worked hard all my life. I've never smoked and I've never been a heavy drinker."

Jack has three nieces and three nephews.