Video: Trucker Terry back at the wheel - at 93!

For one Ipswich great-grandfather, it was a day he never thought he would see.

IPSWICH: For great grandfather Terry Miles, it was a day he never thought he would see.

For 22 years, Terry drove lorries delivering yeast before he retired in 1981.

Looking back at his life on the open road, Terry often wished he could get back behind the wheel.

But as he prepared to celebrate his 93rd birthday today his family arranged a surprise trip for him in a top-of-the-range, modern lorry.

“He was amazed to see how much it had all changed,” said Martine Driver, Terry's daughter. “It was brilliant to see him in the cab again.”

Born in Mickfield, Terry, of Hawthorn Drive, Chantry, first started driving lorries at 17 in the Army Service Corps based in Colchester, transporting ammunition and supplies across the country.

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Mr Miles then drove trolley buses for Ipswich Buses before he started working for British Fermentation in 1959, driving cold lorries with sacks to keep his legs warm.

Mrs Driver, 52, of Rushmere St Andrew, said: “He loved the freedom of being out on the road and being his own boss.

“He wanted to see what it would be like today.”

Compared with the basic vehicles Terry drove in his youth, the plush DAF 95 XF model, complete with DVD player and microwave, was pure luxury.

Equipped with fridge compartment, full-screen television, air conditioning and cruise control, the �65,000 model was a whole new world for the veteran driver.

Keith Whiting, a driver for Chassis Cab in Great Blakenham, arranged Terry's special day as a surprise treat, taking the spirited pensioner for a spin to Felixstowe and back before pitching up at the Orwell Crossing truck stop for a family lunch.

“He absolutely loved it,” said Mr Whiting, 62. “His face lit up the whole way there and back.”

Four generations of Terry's family joined him for his once-in-a-lifetime treat, including his granddaughters Kazanya Oritz, 29, and Laetitia Oritz, 27, and his grandson Freddie Whiting, two.

“I wouldn't have missed it for the world,” Terry said. “It brought back old times.

“These new lorries are much better than they were in my day.

“They are expensive but they are worth every penny.”

Have you celebrated your birthday with an unusual present? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

Terry, whose real name is Horace George Miles, drove 1.5 million miles in his career.

The old lorries had no heating and in winter Terry would keep a bag of salt to throw on to the windscreen to clear the ice.

In all his years of driving, Terry didn't have one accident for which he was to blame.

In Terry's day, drivers would take 13 hours to get to Wigan. Drivers can now travel to Bristol and back in a day.