FAMILY and friends are to say goodbye to a retired teacher who died within weeks of celebrating his 100th birthday.

The funeral of Leece villager Alan Bolt is to take place at St Cuthbert’s Church, Aldingham, at 11am on Thursday, April 4, followed by a private cremation.

From rugby union player to prisoner of war, English teacher to musician and racehorse owner, Mr Bolt’s century was an eventful one

He died at home on Saturday morning, with his wife Alison at his side.

“He was determined to make 100, and it wasn’t the party that carried him off,” said Mrs Bolt.

"Basically his heart just gave out.”

More than 130 well-wishers had gathered at Mr Bolt’s birthday party at Rampside Village Hall.

“He was absolutely overwhelmed with how many people came. He did enjoy it,” said Mrs Bolt.

Among the many roles once held by her late husband were chairman of governors at Low Furness School and master of North Lonsdale Foxhounds.

Mourners will be invited to make donations to the trail hunting pack, Aldingham Church and the Injured Jockeys Fund.

Mr Bolt was part owner of the racehorse She’s Got Fast.

Mrs Bolt is going ahead with her late husband’s plans to sponsor a steeplechase at Cartmel Racecourse on May 25, to be called the Alan Bolt Memorial Chase.

She said her husband would be greatly missed by his family and many friends.

The 100-year-old was born on March 4, 1919, in London.

He is survived by his daughter Alyson, son-in-law Steve, grandchildren Nicola and Daniel, and great-granddaughters Kira and Summer.