Ilminster baker Lesley Hayman, 100, reveals secret to long life

September 17, 2018  14:32

A RETIRED baker has turned 100 and revealed the secret to his long life - never skip dessert.

Lesley Hayman is still fit and active thanks to his "tremendous appetite" which has kept him at a healthy weight his whole life, according to his family.

He developed a sweet tooth when he started working in the family business at the age of 12 when he would deliver goods by horse and cart.

And the great-grandfather-of-ten still enjoys a pie or pudding every night after his dinner.

His favourites are apple pie, sponge cake or chocolate brownie.

Mr Hayman's daughter-in-law Jennifer, 74, said: "Les has a tremendous appetite and loves his food.

"It's incredible really, he never leaves anything and never skips dessert.

"He is active and you'll still find him out doing the gardening. He's an amazing man."

Son Tim, 74, added: "He eats more than me - we don't know where he puts it all."

Hayman's bakery was founded by Lesley's grandafther George Hayman in Somerset in 1890.

It had five outlets in its heyday - at Chard, Ilminster, Shepton Beauchamp, South Petherton and Ilton.

Mr Hayman was the third of five generations that worked for the bakery, followed by Tim and grandaughter Claire, 49.

But his career was halted when he joined the war effort in 1939 to serve with 142 Field Regiment of the North Devon Yeomanry.

Mr Hayman, who still lives in his own home in Ilminster, Somerset, had two lucky escapes during World War II.

He was stationed on the slopes of Mount Etna in Italy when it errupted in 1942.

And his tank was bombed by the Germans the same year - which he only survived because the crew had forgotten to close a turret which allowed them to escape.

Mr Hayman returned to baking after the war and was married twice - to Renee and Kathleen - having three children, five grandchildren and ten great grandchildren.

He turns 100 on Wednesday (12/09) and will celebrate with a slap-up meal with his friends and family at a local hotel - including dessert.


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