Clonal haematopoiesis is thought to be a rare condition that increases in frequency with age and predisposes individuals to haematological malignancy. Recent studies, utilizing next-generation sequencing (NGS), observed haematopoietic clones in 10% of 70-year olds and rarely in younger individuals. However, these studies could only detect common haematopoietic clones->0.02 variant allele fraction (VAF)-due to the error rate of NGS. To identify and characterize clonal mutations below this threshold, here we develop methods for targeted error-corrected sequencing, which enable the accurate detection of clonal mutations as rare as 0.0003 VAF. We apply these methods to study serially banked peripheral blood samples from healthy 50-60-year-old participants in the Nurses' Health Study. We observe clonal haematopoiesis, frequently harbouring mutations in DNMT3A and TET2, in 95% of individuals studied. These clonal mutations are often stable longitudinally and present in multiple haematopoietic compartments, suggesting a long-lived haematopoietic stem and progenitor cell of origin.