A COTSWOLD sweet shop owner was surrounded by friends and family as he celebrated his 100th birthday this week.

Howard Maurice Miller, who goes by his middle name, became a centenarian today (Tuesday) and marked the event by welcoming friends and family to his home at Ferry View, Merstow Green in Evesham.

Born in Northleach, Mr Miller, followed in his parents footsteps and on leaving Westwood's Grammar School he joined their business.

He met and married his wife Elyned in 1937 in her home town of Abergavenny and the couple went on to have two sons, John and David in the coming years.

When war hit in 1939 Mr Miller joined the RAF and served until 1946, spending much of his time in the records office but with a year long stint at the Supreme Headquarters Allies Expeditionary Force.

In 1953 the family opened up a sweet shop known as Miller's Sweet Shop in their home town of Northleach.

After retiring Mr and Mrs Miller moved to Yeovil but returned to the Vale in 1980 when they moved into Evesham.

In later life Mr Miller was very active in the community, being in the St Peter's Church in Bengeworth choir, a member of the RAF Association and being a volunteer driver for local organisations.

Sadly in 1985 Mrs Miller passed away.

Three years later after meeting a new lady Mr Miller remarried Catherine, until she too died in 1996.

Mr Miller now has four grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Son John said: "He always reads the Journal. He is very healthy, he didn't go to the hospital until recent years for around 70 years.

"He is very active, has a great sense of humour and gets on well with all people."