A FORMER language teacher at Bradford Grammar, who taught Russian to British spies during the Cold War, is marking his 100th birthday today.

Charles Courtenay Lloyd, the oldest living graduate of Selwyn College at Cambridge University, was a master of modern languages at the Bradford school for nearly 20 years from the 1960s.

A World Ward Two veteran, having served in the Royal Navy, Mr Lloyd, currently lives in Madrid with his daughter Masha and is celebrating his centenary there.

As an officer he was involved in the liberation of Norway, receiving the Liberty Medal from the King of Norway for his outstanding service.

Today, as well as receiving a message from the Queen to mark his 100th birthday, he has also received a card from King Harald of Norway, in recognition of his contribution to the liberation of the country.

His daughter Masha Lloyd has researched and written a biography to mark her father’s centenary, detailing his remarkable life.

In it she describes her father as: “An Englishman who is a polyglot and speaks six languages perfectly. Apart from his native tongue he knows Norwegian, Russian, French, German and Spanish.

“He is also quite fluent in Danish, Swedish and Dutch and has a smattering of Finnish and Icelandic. Today aged nearly 100 he still reads in these languages.”

While teaching Russian to British spies with the Joint Services School of Languages, he met and married Elena Von Lieven, a Russian princess whose family had fled during the Russian Revolution.

The couple had two children, George and Masha.

Masha writes: “As well as a formidable linguist Charles Courtenay Lloyd is remembered as an inspirational teacher who influenced the lives of many of his pupils.

“In the second half of his life he was a teacher of Russian at the RAF College in Cranwell and latterly a teacher of French, German and Russian at Bradford Grammar School for 19 years from 1964-1983.”

She describes how former pupils remember “an extraordinary teacher who set them on their careers”.

Mr Lloyd retired in 1983 and continued living in Bradford, moving to live in Madrid with his daughter and her family in 2005 after his wife Elena and son George both died of cancer two years apart.

As part of the celebrations to mark his 100th birthday, the biography penned by his daughter Masha, which details his unconventional life, is being published and will be available on Amazon’s Kindle store from today.