Obituary: Leslie Spoor, political activist, 100

Scotland's oldest political activist has died at the age of 100 this week after a long and respected career fighting for radical causes.

Leslie Spoor, the principal founder of the Scottish Green Party, battled for left-wing and ecological causes since the 1930s.

He was involved in the Battle of Cable Street in 1936, when communities in London's East End united to take violent action against Oswald Mosley's British Union of Fascists.

Mr Spoor was also a member of the Labour Party for many years and was a close friend of Robin Cook, the late foreign secretary and Livingston MP.

Born in South Shields in 1910, he served in the RAF as a wireless mechanic before moving to Edinburgh and graduated from Edinburgh University with a degree in history and a postgraduate in teaching.

Mr Spoor lived with his wife, Pat, in Corstorphine and became head of history at Musselburgh Grammar School. He also lectured for the Open University and Napier Technical College.

In 1978, three years after he retired, he founded the Scottish Green Party, then known as the Scottish Ecology Party.

Throughout his life Mr Spoor maintained a keen interest in current affairs and last year took to the streets of Edinburgh in an attempt to help Robin Harper become Scotland's first Green MP.

Gavin Corbett, a friend and Green Party colleague of Mr Spoor's for 20 years, said: "Leslie's passing away is a sad loss, but he has been an inspiration for many. This is someone who became involved in political activism when fascism loomed over Europe in the 1930s and was still active in the 21st century, when we face many different challenges.

"He was a generous and kind-hearted man and that won him friends across the political spectrum. He was an inspirational figure."

Friends and family of one of the UK's oldest women are remembering her active life after she passed away at the age of 106.

Margaret Brown, left, who escaped a care home at the age of 99 just after social services checked her in, passed away at Corstorphine Hospital after a long and adventurous life.

Mrs Brown, who lived in Carrick Knowe, was fiercely independent and stayed in her own home until the age of 104, when she moved to the nearby residential hospital.

She only gave up smoking at the age of 101 after eventually hearing it could shorten her life and enjoyed a brandy every night.

Her granddaughter, Michelle Rodger, who lived with her for a year as a student, said: "She was a feisty old lady, absolutely determined to be as independent as she could be.

"She had a great memory for things that happened in the 'olden days' as she called it. I lived with her for a year when I studied at Napier and she became almost a cult figure among my friends.

"When someone is 106 you expect a phone call one day, but it was still a shock. She was in good health until the end."The fact that she passed away in her sleep, after seeing a century go by, was a great comfort."