A new start after 60: ‘I started sketching at 72 – and graduated with a fine art degree at 96’

Archie White was a keen teenage artist, but gave it up for five decades as a solicitor. Now he is starting a new student charity and painting furiously

Archie White says he would like to retire, but I’m not sure I believe him. This summer he made headlines when he graduated with a fine art degree from East Sussex College. He was 96 years and 56 days old – a few months short of setting a new world record for the oldest graduate.

Graduation was only the beginning. “I’m pretty busy all the time,” he says. A former solicitor, he still does consultancy work on the side and is “painting furiously to meet the demands of studios”. On top of that, he is in the process of co-founding a charity, GradAid, with East Sussex College.

Tell us: has your life taken a new direction after the age of 60?

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