A newly turned centenarian from Caerphilly was not allowed to let reaching 100 years old pass by without celebration, despite the lockdown restrictions.

The local community came together in a socially distanced fashion to celebrate Alf Lerwill's 100th birthday on Thursday 4 June.

A makeshift postbox was set up in the local fish and chips shop to collect birthday cards and a local volunteer even baked and presented Alf with a cake.

Alf served in Burma during WW2 and was awarded a Burma Star for his time there, something he remains modest about claiming he is "not a war hero."

Others in the community would disagree and came together to show their appreciation for Alf and all he has done by sending birthday cards and visiting him on his big day.

Alf Lerwill received a Burma Star for his service during WW2 but modestly maintains that he 'is not a war hero.' Credit: ITV Cymru Wales

The front garden was covered in the cards Alf received and that were hung up by his great niece, Sarah Lerwill.

Sarah was behind the majority of the birthday arrangements. She is also his carer and has been looking after Alf since even before lockdown.

She said although they would have preferred to hold a proper party, Alf still had a smile on his face all day.

Sarah set up chairs at two metre distances and set up a cleaning station outside Alf's front garden so that visitors could wish him well and still stay safe.

Alf even received a birthday cake from a local volunteer, Sue Gallant, who has been cooking meals for frontline workers during the pandemic. Sue and her team wanted to do something to help make the war veteran's birthday special.

Sue Gallant and a group of volunteers have been cooking meals for frontline workers during the pandemic. Credit: ITV Cymru Wales
Alf's front garden was decorated with banners and strings of cards he received. Credit: ITV Cymru Wales

Alf did not receive an official shielding letter but has been isolating at home, with family members checking in on him everyday since lockdown began and dropping off essentials.