Joe Kester

From the Cambridge News, March* 1952 (reprinted in the Cambridge Evening News 26 March 2002, p.8)

Ale age secret

Joe Kester has died at Chesterton Hospital at the age of 104. On his last birthday, he was surrounded by five generations of his family. He was born at Kingston in 1847 but moved to Hardwick as a baby and lived there for 98 years. He remembered when his mother could take a shopping bag the size of a pillowcase to the shops and get it filled for 3s. (15p). He was six when he started work tending geese, chickens and turkeys for 6d. (2.5p) a week. He had only candles for lighting and a tinderbox to light them with. Joe enjoyed a half-pint of beer a day and used to say: "I lived well, worked hard and had plenty of ale and fresh air. Hard work never hurt anybody."

Article reproduced by kind permission of the Cambridge Evening News
* The article incorrectly stated that the original source was from February 1952. In fact it was published on page 7 of the Cambridge Daily News of Friday, 21st March 1952, the same day that Joe Kester died. Thanks to Brian Ellis for pointing this out.

Thanks to Brian Ellis, great great grandson of Old Joe Kester, for providing this photo. Brian says: "From left to right is a young George "Happy" Kester, Old Joe Kester, then his son Joe Kester (Happy's dad). I currently have no idea who the grizzled old man in the chair in front is, but seems to be of Old Joe's generation, perhaps a brother. Maybe someone will recognize him once it is posted? The photo itself seems to have been taken when George was in his mid to late teens, maybe early 20's? That would place it around 1915-1920?"

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