Lewis Hamilton’s birthday message for Bristol City fan Len
A lifelong Bristol City fan who just turned 105 was “blown away” to receive a birthday message from racing hero Lewis Hamilton.
Formula 1 fan Len Howes and his 75-year-old son David were treated to a face-to-face video call with the A-lister ahead of Len’s birthday on Thursday, October 14.
The great-grandfather also received a birthday video message from city manager Nigel Pearson, who asked to know his “secret to success”.
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The Mercedes F1 team shared footage from the two-minute video call on Twitter on Friday and it has already been “liked” nearly 14,000 times.
Lewis commented on the call about how Len “looks good” for his age, which Len modestly brushed aside as he beamed towards the camera.
David told Lewis how “so proud” they were both of his racing exploits, whose fame seemed touched and credited to his family and supporters.
Len’s great-nephew, Patch Warner, who hosts 3 Peaps in a podcast, told Bristol Live his great-uncle was “blown away” by the posts.
He said: “It’s crazy – it’s gone viral on Twitter.
“He’s a huge Formula 1 fan and loves watching football, and I think he must be Lewis Hamilton’s oldest fan.”
Patch, who lives in Emersons Green, said another birthday message was planned during the Bristol City vs Bournemouth game on Saturday.
He added: “He’s been a City fan for 100 years – he must be their oldest fan – and while he won’t be going to today’s game, they’re going to read a birthday message to the half-time. “
Len’s granddaughter wrote to Mercedes headquarters asking if they could send a signed photo for her birthday, and was shocked when they responded by offering a Zoom call as well, as Lewis wanted to speak to her.
It took place two weeks ago, when the F1 driver was at Monza before the Italian Grand Prix.
Len was born in St Pauls and raised in Bedminster, before moving to Smythe Road near Ashton Gate Stadium in 1940.
The great-grandfather of two now lives with his son and daughter-in-law in Newquay but still follows Bristol City from there.
The popular Len, who left school at 14 to start working as a plumber, also received a birthday card from the Queen.
He worked for BT until his retirement at 65 and helped set up the telephone system in the underground tunnels of the Ministry of Defense in Corsham, Wiltshire.
He served in the Army’s Royal Signals during World War II, helping to build and maintain a radio listening station used to intercept German messages, sent to Bletchley Park for decoding.
Besides having a keen interest in sports, Len enjoys doing crossword puzzles on his iPad while looking out the window at the view of the Gannel River.
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