Scot who is Australia's oldest person at 111 says knitting is the secret

An ex-pat born in a tiny Scots hamlet has become the oldest person in Australia aged 111 and says not smoking, drinking and lots of knitting is her secret to a long life.

Jane Gray, who still has a Scottish accent, was raised in Newtyle, Angus, and celebrated her milestone 10,000 miles away in Sydney - becoming the oldest person down under in the process.

Ms Gray, known as Jeannie, has seen five British monarchs and 27 prime ministers since her birth in 1901.

She is currently the 63rd oldest person in the world and has vowed to take the number one spot from Besse Cooper.

She said: "I'll beat that. I don't feel any different. I don't see what's stopping me."

She left Scotland at the age of 27 and last visited her home country in 1992 where members of her family remain in close contact with her.

The great-great grandmother-of-one said the key to a long life is to keep a healthy lifestyle.

She said: "I don't smoke, I don't drink, but I like knitting."

Ms Gray, who turned 111 on Saturday, said her only regret now is that she is unable to dance anymore.

She said: "If I could dance I would be happy. Now I can just lift my feet and kick."

One of a family of six, she was born to a shoemaker in Newtyle. She stayed in the village after she left school and worked as a nanny, before she embarked on a trip to the other side of the world.

She married just 48 hours after touching down in Australia as she instantly fell in love with John 'Jock' Gray from Durris, Aberdeenshire, who she met on a blind date.

Ms Gray was married to her husband for 60 years where they raised two children, Sandy and Heather, and ran a poultry farm.

Her niece, Margaret Lawrence, 84, of Newtyle, said her auntie had lived well and as a result was still very active for her age.

She said: "After she went to Australia she wrote every week from 1927 to her mum and her sister - my mum.

"She lived independently on her own until she was well past her 100th birthday and now stays with her daughter, Heather, but is still very sprightly.

"I was on the phone to her only last week. She still has a Scottish accent and picks up all the words from here."

Nephew, Ian Morris, 86, added: "She never smoked, seldom drinks, but loved the bingo and was reading six books at a time well into her hundreds."

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