A GREAT-grandfather still playing golf in his 90s has died months after achieving his goal of reaching his 100th birthday.

Retired Lieutenant Colonel James Bouverie-Brine, of Horder Mews, in Old Town, was surrounded by his family when he died aged 100 and ½ on March 30 from prostate cancer.

The war veteran, who spent much of his military career with the British Army’s Royal Tank Regiment, had celebrated the milestone birthday in October at the Marriott Hotel.

After the death of his son Christopher, 61, to cancer in 2007, and his wife of almost 70 years Joan, who died last year aged 94, he made it his goal to get to triple figures.

Paying tribute, daughter Liz McGaughrin, of Cookham, Berkshire said: “I am so lucky to have had him as a father, he was funny, self-deprecating, interesting, intelligent and an amazing raconteur. He loved a party and was a key ingredient for a successful one.

“Despite his failing health he saw the positives in everything. Everybody he met loved him and right to the end he enjoyed meeting new people.”

James was born in Taplow, Buckinghamshire during the First World War. When the war ended he travelled to India with his mother and sister to be with his father, who had joined the Indian Army.

He went to primary school in the Himalayan Mountains returning alone for boarding school in the UK, later joining Sandhurst Military Academy.

In January 1936, he joined the Royal Tank Regiment and was duly posted to Egypt in 1938. The Second World War saw him as one of General Montgomery’s famous ‘Desert Rats’ fighting in the Battle of Alamein and the siege of Tobruk.

Despite a direct shell hitting his tank and leaving him with severe deafness, his career continued with the army after the war and he enjoyed postings in the UK, Palestine, Germany, Korea, Hong Kong and Japan.

He retired in 1976 and moved to Wiltshire, with wife Joan, who was awarded an MBE for voluntary work with military charities, and enjoyed many years travelling and visiting his ever expanding family. Between them they had four daughters and four sons.

They moved to Old Town in 2003 to be nearer family and as he slowed into late retirement nothing brought him as much joy as spending time with many of his 12 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren.

Liz added: “Father did his duty, he served his country, he did work for SSAFA and the British Legion, and was a devoted carer to my mother in her later years. His GP described him at 99 as the oldest carer in Swindon.”

One of James’ other children Amelia Lacey said: “Father has left an enormous void in our lives. Life won’t be the same without him. He was a lynchpin in difficult times.”

James' funeral will be held at 3pm next Thursday, April 21 at Kingsdown Crematorium.