WORKING hard and having a wee tipple before bed at night could be the secret to long life according to the family of an incredible Gourock-born centenarian.

Jessie Johnstone was the centre of attention as she turned 102-years-old on March 17.

Her nephew Scott told the Telegraph that his auntie had always been a very hard worker, and continued doing jobs in shops and cafes even after she retired. 

Greenock Telegraph:
He believes her strong work ethic, along with having a wee whisky before bed for many years, could be what's kept her going into her 100s.

Scott, 69, said: "She's a fantastic lady. 

"She still has all her faculties but she's very hard of hearing now. 

"She's very stubborn as well and I think that's a lot of what drives her on!"

Jessie was born on St Patrick's Day in 1922 in a house on Hopeton Street in Gourock. 

She was the fifth of seven siblings, with five brothers and one sister, and attended Gourock Eastern School. 

Jessie worked in the cotton mill in Paisley, the munitions factories in Bishopton and at the Battery Park, and also in Ross's dairy. 

Greenock Telegraph:
The Johnstone family moved to Nelson Road and then onto George Road. 

Jessie met her sweetheart Jeffrey Banks on a boat trip and they married at St John's Church in Gourock just six months later in 1946. 

Jeff was originally from Yorkshire and served in the RAF. 

Not long after the couple wed, they moved down to Halifax to start their married life. 

Jeffrey's aunt and uncle bought a boarding house in Blackpool called The Sunnybank Hotel in the early 1950s and asked him and Jessie to run it for them. 

Greenock Telegraph:
The couple dedicated more than 20 years to running the popular hotel. 

Scott says Jessie worked extremely hard in the role. 

He added: "She would work all day in the boarding house and then go over the road to the comrades club at night to work as a barmaid. 

"She still gets Christmas cards from the people who stayed there and she has a lot of fantastic memories of that time. 

"My aunt and uncle never had a house of their own all that time as they stayed in the hotel until it was sold on in the 1970s."

After her stint running the hotel came to an end, Jessie took jobs in places including the Co-operative and Mackintosh's sweet company, and was still working until around 10 or 15 years ago.

Jeffrey sadly passed away at the end of the 1990s.

Greenock Telegraph:
Greenock Telegraph:
Scott says Jessie still gets out and about to the bingo and loves her jigsaws. 

She has carers coming in twice a day to give her medication but manages all other tasks herself. 

Scott says his aunt was determined to reach 100 and now that milestone has been passed, she just wants to keep going. 

He added: "In her 90s, she was so eager to get the telegram from the Queen.

"We had a big party for her reaching 100 and we've had them for her 101st and 102nd as well. 

"Everyone wants photos with her, she feels like a celebrity. 

"She was brought onto the stage for her 102nd birthday party and she told everyone she hoped to see them all next year."