An unkind observer might comment that he looks more hip replacement than hip.

But groovy Cyril Merle is as cool as they come - having taken up DJing and dancing in his 90s.

The war veteran made a miraculous recovery from a stroke and then decided it was time to get active.

He said: "So many people who have strokes go to bed because it's the easiest option not to get up. My daughter told me I had to fight it and I was determined to get over it."

Keen sportsman and former RAF member Cyril, 91, was determined not to be beaten when a stroke left him paralysed on one side of his body and unable to communicate.

He spent six months in physiotherapy retraining his body. Six years on he is not only back on his feet but he now helps other people with disabilities by djing and playing music at his nursing home.

Cyril told The Argus: "It is all thanks to the hospital that I was able to recover. They helped me to retrain my body.

Cyril suffered a stroke at his home in Horsham aged 86, four days after his wife's funeral in 2002. The retired pharmaceutical manager had scans at Crawley Hospital before moving to Horsham Hospital for an intensive six month physiotherapy programme.

At the time Mr Merle could hardly speak, walk or eat but therapy helped him regain his independence.

He was then moved to South Sussexdown Nursting Home, in Storrington, where life began again.

He said: "They told me I had to dress myself and make my own breakfast. It was a challenge but it was probably what I needed to get back on my feet."

Despite living through some traumatic experiences while serving in the Dutch Spitfire Squadron of the RAF during World War Two, Mr Merle said the stroke had been one of the toughest challenges yet.

But, he rose to the challenge taking up computing lessons, relearned how to play the keyboard and began ballroom dancing classes. He also djs at events at his local Alzheimer's unit, playing dance tunes from the 1940s and 1950s.

Mr Merle, who worked for Fennings Pharamaceutical for 55 years and only retired aged 81, said part of his recovery was down to his need to keep busy.

His amazing story has inspired other people at the residential home and last week he received a Life After Stroke Award from former Bond Girl Honor Blackman at a Stroke Association event.

Sussexdown Nursing Home spokeswoman Pam Simpson said: "Cyril is a true inspiration to everyone at Sussexdown and still has great enthusiasm for life. At the beginning of June, Cyril even went up in a glider for the first time at the age of 91. I am delighted to have nominated Cyril for this award as he is simply an amazing character."