‘Eat chocolate and drink whisky’ - Scottish woman becomes oldest person in Australia

A Scottish woman has become the oldest person in Australia after celebrating her 110th birthday.

Nessie Kluckhenn was joined by relatives for a party at the care home where she lives in Melbourne to mark the milestone.

She celebrated with a large birthday cake and a piper dressed in a kilt and received cards from the Queen and the Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

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She was also joined by her younger sister, Williamina, 95, who lives a few rooms down from her.

Nessie is originally from St George’s Cross in Glasgow and emigrated to Australia 72 years ago.

When asked what the secret to her long life was, she told local media: “Don’t let anything bother you, eat chocolate and drink whisky.”

Surrounded by family at her birthday celebrations on April 1, Nessie told The Age newspaper: “It’s time I was looking for a third husband. I feel fantastic.”

The sprightly supercentenarian also said being Scottish and “too mean” to buy cigarettes had helped her to live a long life. She also enjoys playing Scrabble and is known to be a fierce competitor.

Born Agnes Reid in Glasgow in 1909, Nessie was the eldest of seven children.

She worked as a nanny for a wealthy family in New York in the 1920s, where she witnessed the start of Charles Lindbergh’s historic solo flight over the Atlantic in 1927 and the collapse of Wall Street in 1929.

She returned to Glasgow where she took a job with British Railway and has strong memories of sheltering as Germany dropped bombs on the city during World War II.

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After the war ended, she and husband Jimmy Hogarth relocated to Australia due to a post-war housing shortage in Scotland.

The couple migrated to Melbourne in 1947 and lived in the northern suburb of Coburg.

Jimmy worked for an engineering firm and Nessie found employment at a department store and later owned a card shop, The Age reported.

Nessie remarried in 1978, three years after Jimmy died, and she moved into the Mayflower Brighton care home when she was 92.

She never had any children but is devoted to her dozens of nieces and nephews and their children.

A spokesman for the Mayflower Brighton care home said: “We were tickled pink to celebrate Nessie Kluckhenn’s 110th birthday at Mayflower Brighton.

“Nessie is the oldest living person in Australia, and is showing no signs of slowing down.”

Scotland’s oldest person is Alf Smith from St Madoes in Perthshire, who celebrated his 111th birthday on March 29.

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The retired farmer shares his birthday with England’s oldest man, Bob Weighton, who also turned 111 and whom he swapped cards with.