A WEE COUNTY veteran has celebrated his 100th birthday surrounded by his family in Menstrie over the weekend.

James Thomson, better known as Jim, became a centenarian on Saturday, March 9.

The day before his birthday he received a home visit from a number of family members, as well as provost Tina Murphy and deputy lieutenant Hector Nicolson

Jim was born and raised in Grange, Banffshire, along with his parents and half-brother.

After leaving school at the age of 14 he went to work on the farms, and married his partner Margaret – known as Peg – while he was still a teenager.

Jim joined the army when he was 19 and fought in World War Two while in his twenties.

During that time serving his country, he worked on the Burma Railway before being taken as a prisoner of war by the Japanese.

After being held captive for six years, Jim was eventually released from Japan and returned home in 1945.

When asked if it was a relief to finally come back after such an ordeal, he commented: “Oh aye, it was a relief alright.”

After the war, Jim went back to work on the farms in Banff and spent most of his working life there.

The tough work on the farms left Jim with little free time, but when he did find some, he enjoyed filling it with dog walking, dancing and gardening.

Around 30 years ago Jim and Peg moved to Menstrie to be closer to their daughter, but Peg sadly passed away in 1993.

In the years after, Jim, a self-confessed people person, rekindled his passion for dancing and socialising – and proved popular with many people in Clacks.

Throughout his life, Jim has been an active, happy-go-lucky man who always had a positive outlook.

His years of hard work have kept Jim fit and healthy well into his later years – and will no doubt keep him going for much more time to come.