Bill Roache wants to live until he’s 120

Bill Roache wants to live until he’s 120

Bill Roache wants to live until he is 120, and claims ageing is a "belief system".
The 86-year-old actor – who has played Coronation Street’s Ken Barlow since the ITV soap’s first-ever episode in December 1960 – used to down "a couple of gin and tonics, half a bottle of wine with dinner and maybe a brandy afterwards" on a daily basis, but only has the occasional drink now and believes people will live until they are 200 eventually.
In his new book, ‘Life and Soul’, serialised in the Daily Mirror newspaper, he said: "Ageing is a belief system within the collective consciousness of humanity. It’s what we’ve collectively decided about age and what it means for our body and our lifestyle.
"We don’t have to age and die at a certain time. We can extend our lifespan by pushing the parameters of the belief that we’ll only live to 70, 80 or 90 years.
"Many people are now living for 100 years or more, and this can change our reality. If it continues, more and more people will start living to be 100, 120, 130, 140. It can happen.
"Maybe I could live to 120 and still be in good health. I’m certainly open to that! Eventually we’ll live to be 200 years or more. I’ve barely had a serious illness in my life.
"I drank for England in the 1960s. I just thought it was normal to come home and have a couple of gin and tonics, half a bottle of wine with dinner and maybe a brandy afterwards, and that was every day. I have just the odd glass now on special
occasions, but that’s me. Again, everything in moderation."
As well as drinking regularly, Bill used to smoke, but he made himself give up by watching countless films about lung cancer, and saw the bad effects of the habit "first hand" with his late ‘Corrie’ co-star Anne Kirkbride (Deirdre Barlow).
He said: "Smoking is really, really bad for your health. I say this as someone who smoked about 40 a day up to the age of 40. To give it up, I made myself watch films about lung cancer.
"Never kid yourself – smoking kills you. It causes cancer, it causes emphysema and it causes a whole lot of other illnesses. I saw this first hand with Annie Kirkbride."
Bill also claims he delayed his need for glasses by "12 to 15 years" after he read a book which taught him to exercise his eye muscles.
He added: "I lost 50 per cent of my hearing, but I’ve learned to live with it. When my eyesight began to deteriorate, I went to an optician, who said, ‘How old are you?’ I replied, ‘Forty-five,’ and he said, ‘That’s what it is’.
"I decided it wasn’t that. And I got a book, ‘Better Eyesight Without Glasses’, and started exercising my eye muscles as it suggested. I could feel those muscles working, and I delayed my need for glasses by 12-15 years."