A 100-year-old swam more than 100m on his birthday to raise money for the NHS.

Bill Smith tackled the challenge in a pool at the Briary Court retirement facility in Cowes, where he lives, on Saturday, surpassing his initial 100m target with a 136m swim and raising over £1,300 for NHS Charities Together.

The retired chef, who used to be head of the Isle of Wight College catering department, has been an avid swimmer since he was five years old and has a dip in the pool every morning at 7am.

He keeps track of how many widths he has completed by putting spoons in bowls on the side of the pool, placing one per journey back and forth.

Isle of Wight County Press:

“It’s been a tough year for the NHS because of the pandemic and I’m so glad to do something that doesn’t just benefit me,” Mr Smith told the PA news agency.

“To celebrate my 100th year I wanted to do something to give back, I thought about donating blood but was unfortunately too old so decided to do a sponsored swim for the NHS instead!

“I encourage everyone to just dig and give what they can to the wonderful NHS.”

The centenarian donated £100 of his own money to the cause, one for each of his 100 years.

Cherry Kingdom, development manager at Mr Smith’s retirement facility, which is managed by Firstport, said: “Bill is a total inspiration and doesn’t let anything faze him.

“We are so proud of Bill here at Briary Court and it’s so lovely to see residents using our facilities to do some good.

“Myself and all of the other residents here have enjoyed seeing Bill help the local community and would love to be as energetic as him at the age of 100!”

Bill was married to Ruth and the couple had children, Maretta and Peter, and three grandchildren.

He has always been active and claims to have never been tired in his life.

His family said he was always cooking, digging the garden, swimming, singing and dancing, building or doing something — and is just the same now.