CATHERINE ‘Katie’ Masters, the third oldest person in the country and the oldest living Scot, has died.

The centenarian, from Stanford in the Vale, celebrated her 111th birthday on November 23 last year.

Her grandson Robert McInnes, 48, an environmental consultant from Littleworth, learned of his grandmother’s death early yesterday and was flying back from a business trip to Switzerland to arrange her funeral.

Mrs Masters lived at the Grange Care Home in Stanford in the Vale, but died at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford. She had been admitted on Sunday.

Mr McInnes said: “She had a problem with her heart and 10 days ago she had a pacemaker fitted, but there were complications.

“It’s very sad to lose a member of your family. My grandmother was the fittest 111-year-old I have ever met and living to that age is an amazing achievement.

“Right up to a week and a half ago, she would still get up and wash and dress herself.

“She didn’t need any nursing as such, even though she was in the nursing home.

“My grandmother liked to watch Strictly Come Dancing and the racing on TV and she liked to have a laugh and a joke with my daughters Fiona, six, and Isobel, eight, when they came to visit.

“The funeral will be held locally and will be a small, family affair.”

Mr McInnes, whose birthday is on the same date, added: “There was an Early Day Motion in the Scottish Parliament on her birthday, recording that she was the oldest living Scot, and she remained fiercely Scottish.”

Born in Dundee in 1899, during Queen Victoria’s reign, Mrs Masters survived two world wars and a smoking habit which she only kicked in her 80th year.

Last year, she said she had no ambition to be the oldest person in the country.

Mrs Masters was married twice and had one child. She had two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

In 2009, she was surprised by a 40-minute visit from Prince William after she complained that The Queen had sent her the same design of birthday card five years in a row.

She said last year she was happy the Prince had got engaged and hoped his fiancee Kate Middleton was the right person for him.

Wantage MP Ed Vaizey said: “I’m very sorry to hear that Catherine Masters has died.

“After I went to see her, I sent an email to Prince William’s office and he then made a visit.”

Harold Traje, a nurse at the Grange, said: “Catherine was very special to us.

“She was a very nice lady and she will be sadly missed.”

When Mrs Masters reached her 111th birthday, the two older older Britons were Margaret Fish, from Bedfordshire, who was born in March 1899, and Violet Wood, from Kent, who was born that September.

The oldest ever Briton was Charlotte Hughes, who died in 1993, when she was 115 years old.