Donside Adam hits for a century


Westhill resident Adam Craigmile celebrated his 100th birthday on Thursday, July 11 with a party at his sheltered housing home at Blackhills Court, Westhill. Residents, friends and family helped him celebrate.

He was also visited by Cllr Iris Walker and Deputy Lord Lieutenant, Andrew Salveson at the event.

Mr Craigmile has lived through things barley comprehensible to modern minds.

In 1918 Adam started at Westhill Primary School and where many of the children went barefoot to school. Following that he went to Skene Central School (which is now Skene Primary School).

At 14 he started work farming at the Broadstraik Inn farm where most of the work was carried out using Clydesdale horses.

He used to drive his sheep and cattle by foot to Aberdeen Mart which took him a whole day there and back. His father then sold the Broadstraik Inn in 1927 and they moved to Nethermains, Echt and thereafter to the Colquonnie Hotel and farm, Strathdon where he met land girl Zena.

Married life began with Zena in 1944 at Sinnahard croft where the general merchant shop sold everything from petrol to animal feed.

Son Adam arrived at Sinnahard on VE day 1945. The family then moved to a baker/grocer shop in Aberdeen’s George Street where Barry was born on July 7 1947.

Adam with Zena later moved back to Westhill where they settled.

During this time in Westhill they became grandparents to three children. Zena died at the end of 1999 and Adam carried on living in the family home until 2008 when he moved to Blackhills Court.

Adam attributes his long life to 60 years of hard work, basic food like porridge and brose, always looking forward, a great many hobbies, keeping a sense of humour in the face of old age limitations, keeping an interest in farming topics.

Speaking after the party Cllr Iris Walker said: “I was both delighted and honoured to present Mr Craigmile with a bottle of whisky and a card on behalf of Aberdeenshire Council. Adam’s life story is fascinating and he is a shining example to us all... It was lovely to see him surrounded by his family.”