Tributes paid to Northern Ireland’s oldest man William Noble following his death at the age of 106

Tributes have been paid following the death of Northern Ireland’s oldest man at the age of 106.

William ‘Billy’ Noble, a veteran Ulster Unionist, passed away at his Jordanstown home yesterday.

The former civil servant was born in 1909.

He was educated at Belfast Royal Academical Institution he went on to spend almost 50 years with the civil service.

On his 106th birthday in January, Mr Noble recalled watching the Queen’s coronation in 1953.

He put his long life down to clean living.

He said: “I was always very keen on walking and sport. I never drank and I never smoked.

Mr Noble received three telegrams from the Queen and medals from the president of Ireland to mark his birthdays.

East Antrim Ulster Unionist MLA Roy Beggs led tributes to Mr Noble.

“It is with sadness that today we say goodbye to William Noble CBE.

“However, it is sadness tinged with warm memories and appreciation for a very long life, which was lived to the full.

“Mr Noble was a lifelong Unionist and his mother was an activist in the Duncairn area of Belfast when it was represented by Edward Carson.

“It was wonderful that so many tributes were paid to him when he turned 106 in January.

“Not only was he Northern Ireland’s oldest man, he was literally Northern Ireland’s most senior Ulster Unionist.

“It was a privilege to have known him, and my sympathy is with the whole family circle, especially his son Dennis and daughter in law Pamela who cared for William, and who will miss his presence most acutely.”

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