Twin sisters from Powys are officially oldest in world
- 3 November 2010
- From the section Wales
Two sisters who are 100 years old have been officially named as the oldest twins in the world.
Farmer's daughters Ena Pugh and Lily Millward, who still live in their own houses near Brecon, Powys, were given the title by Guinness World Records.
They were born on 4 January, 1910 when Queen Victoria's son Edward VII was king.
They have taken the record from two French sisters, Raymonde and Lucienne Wattelade, who are 98 years old.
The French twins said: "We think it's encouraging to know that there are older twins and are delighted to pass the record on to them."
Great-grandmother Lily said the secret of their long life was "laughter and having a joke with each other".
She said: "We used to work on the farm all day, but we would enjoy ourselves.
"It was a lot of fun and sociable. We've been very lucky and we have always had good health."
The pair, who still meet up to go shopping every week and talk on the telephone most nights, will be exactly 100 years and 10 months on Thursday.
They were given the oldest twins title after their birth certificates were checked by Guinness World Records.
Lily's daughter Dianne Powell, 64, said: "The French sisters were mere youngsters compared to my mother and aunt.
"As twins, they have been very close all their lives and they are still very close now.
"Each of them jumps on a bus on their own every Friday so they can go shopping together and have a chat over a cup of tea.
"And they ring each other almost every evening, although they are both very hard of hearing - they can't really always know what the other is saying but just enjoy talking to each other."
Ena was born first, followed by Lily a few minutes later in their family farm cottage in the village of Garthbrengy, near Brecon.
Their parents Charles and Laura Thomas had 10 children, including twin brothers, but Ena and Lily are the only survivors.
Ena married railwayman Ivor, who died more than 20 years ago.
They had three children and Ena now has 10 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Lily lives in a smallholding and has been a widow for nearly 20 years since the death of husband Evan, a former timber merchant.
She had two children, five grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.
The pair are still independent and, apart from a bit of cleaning, do everything on their own, even collecting wood for their fires.
Lily's family said she was still doing aerobics until six months ago.
Grand-daughter Jayne Nascimento, 39, said: "We are delighted they are officially the oldest in the world.
"They are lovely old ladies. It is incredible - not only because of their age but because they are so independent and still living in their own homes.
"My gran has lived on her smallholding for more than 60 years out in the countryside and was still keeping chickens up until a few years ago.
"She loves living on the smallholding and maybe that is what keeps her so healthy and hearty."