Astro Twins – Set 1

Bob and Alf

In a new occasional series, I am looking at sets of Astrological Twins.  This week Robert Weighton of Hampshire and Alfred Smith of Perth turned 110 on 29th March; they are Britain’s oldest men and are among the oldest people in the world. I shall be looking into clues in their lives and chart about longevity, and possible parallels in their lives.  We do not know their birth times, or which of them was born the earliest. They have been in touch, as pen pals, for four years, but have not yet met.  Both have been pictured this week in the media looking very hale and hearty, with huge grins.

Bob Weighton

Bob Weighton is much travelled, and if we were looking for clues to longevity in places he’s lived, there would be a long list: born in Hull, he has lived in Taiwan, China, Japan, Canada and the U.S.  He now lives in Alton, Hampshire.

The pair have Sun in Aries, a life giving sign, and the Sun in their charts trines optimistic Jupiter.  Robert expresses the jovial planet thus: “I think laughter is extremely important. Most of the trouble in the world is caused by people taking themselves too seriously.”

Mercury in their charts highlights mental inspiration in a trine to a conjunction between the North Node and Neptune, indicating that their lives may be as spiritual wayshowers.  We don’t know a great deal about them, and less about Alfred, but Robert’s take on the world (he is still very engaged with world affairs) shows great depth of thought: “What is important is that you identify forces that are constructive for humanity, and those that are destructive, and you support the ones that are constructive.”

The secretive side of their Sun square to Neptune is also apparent from Robert’s history.  He learned Japanese and worked for the British Political Warfare Mission during the 2nd World War to decipher messages trying to “ruin the morale of the Japanese fighting forces.”.

The Engineer is one of the Archetypes to be found in their chart, in Mars in Taurus (physical endurance)  trine Uranus (electrical energy), and Bob did indeed train as an engineer and worked for many years in that profession.

He lectured at City University in London for 25 years and the Teacher Archetype of Bob’s Mercury exactly trine North Node is still operational: “I do a lot of speaking, I go to clubs and schools to talk about my life and what it was like during the war.”

A trine between Jupiter and Saturn confers balance and good judgement.  Politically, he is in the centre:

“I am certainly interested in political matters though I’ve never been a member of a party,” he said. “If anything, I have supported the Lib Dems.” According to the Observer, “to keep abreast of events, he reads the Economist and listens to Radio 4″.  He voted Remain in the referendum and is annoyed that Brexit was triggered on his birthday, and that we will leave the E.U. on his birthday.

The Part of Fortune is in the 11th House of Friendships and Groups, and Venus trines Uranus natally: Bob spends much time still attending coffee mornings and clubs, though he states that he does not have a routine in his daily life.

Alfred Smith

Both men were born into large families.  Alf was born in Invergowrie, near Dundee and now lives in St. Madoes, east of Perth.  But, in an interesting parallel, both men lived for a time in Canada: Alf from 1927 to 1932, and Bob from 1939 to 1941.

Alf’s occupation is more focussed on the conjunction of Venus and Mars in Taurus, which they both share.  He comes from a farming family, and his family are still farming.  Venus conjunct Mars in Taurus takes delight in the connection with the earth (he farmed for 40 years until he retired at 70) and also in the sensory enjoyment of life.  Bob’s enjoyment of arts and crafts, another province of Venus in Taurus, is expressed through making and painting models in his spare time.  Venus conjunct Mars also has a good instinct for relationship, and when his wife was alive she and Bob volunteered together as marriage counsellors (Venus conjunct Mars square Chiron the Healer).  Alf and Bob have Chiron, their Inner Healer, in the progressive sign of Aquarius, which may have been a factor in their longevity.  Pluto also trine closely Chiron would strengthen them in matters of life, death and healing, and helping to overcome the square of Chiron to Mars/Venus.  Last year, Alf was quoted as saying: “I don’t have any pains and I sleep well. I’m not worried very much about anything.”  He also advocates eating porridge for breakfast!: ‘Porridge is helpful and having a job you enjoy. I like to think I’ve lived a decent life.”

As Astrologers, we always look for parallels in the lives of Astro Twins, and there is a gem in that they both married in the same year.  Bob married Agnes, who he met in Taiwan, and Alf married Isobel, in 1937, around the time of their first Saturn Return. Both are widowers.

Last word from Bob:

“I have not lived my life avoiding being run over by buses or getting cancer or anything else. I’ve done nothing to deserve or achieve this age. I’m just one of the lucky ones.”


A bright and clear thinking aspect occurs this afternoon: the Sun conjuncts Mercury in Aries, an enlivening aspect, which gives us the green light in whichever area it occurs in our chart.  It assists us in being authentic and straightforward.  It also helps us to focus, for example if we are tackling financial accounts.  It is a congenial influence for living in the Now.

Tomorrow (Monday 2nd) brings us a conjunction between Mars and Saturn in Capricorn, which may be difficult for some.  If you already have a Mars/Saturn connection in your natal chart, you may be more used to working with it.  The explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes has this conjunction, and it has led him to push himself in his exploits of endurance.  There may be blocks to practical action under this conjunction, but action can be deliberate, slow and sure (and even thorough).  Some elements of society may act harshly under this influence.

On the same day, the Sun trines the North Node, which points to a creative way through and may help to express any frustrations of the day.  Ownership of creative property may also come up.  Despite difficulties, you may see the Sun poking through the clouds, and reminding you of your karmic rights!

On Wednesday (4th) Mercury squares Mars, which can create irritable conditions and stir up arguments.  For peacemakers, it may be all they can do to concede the little battles in order to win the overall war.  A spot of meditation may be advised for the peacemakers, and if they can draft in the warmongerers in a group meditation, that would be helpful.  The skirmishes may be minor, but could upset those of a sensitive disposition, so be gentle on yourself.

More challenges lie in wait on Thursday (5th).  The progress of the week may seem tedious, with Mercury squaring Saturn, but hang on in there.  Disappointment or delay may characterize travel, especially with Mercury still being retrograde.  Cultivating the art of patience may be  a needed practice and exercise.  Checking the small print may also be useful.

The week ends better, with a constructive trine between Venus and Saturn on Saturday (7th), probably the best aspect of the week.  It is about holding steady in relationships, and knowing that someone cares.  Loyalty, support, commitment are all fostered under this aspect.  Quiet understandings are the order of the day.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – crystal clarity
  • Tomorrow – frustrated action, but some karmic perks
  • Wednesday – fractious
  • Thursday – flat in communications
  • Saturday – loyalty, support and commitment