Couples celebrate long lifetimes of love

MARRIAGE was celebrated in a Suffolk church on Sunday as couples who have been together for more than 60 years gathered for a celebration of their long relationships.

MARRIAGE was celebrated in a Suffolk church on Sunday as couples who have been together for more than 60 years gathered for a celebration of their long relationships.

Between them, the 10 happy pairs in St Michael's Church, Beccles, had more than 650 years of married life together.

And when asked the secret of their success the couple with the longest marriage, Jack and Kathleen Bradley, who were wed in 1940, put it down to good food and listening to each other.

The Bradleys met in the Yorkshire village they lived in, moving to Beccles 31 years ago to retire.


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Former engineer Mr Bradley, 96, joked that their marriage was based on his love of good food while his 95-year-old wife quipped that it was pills that kept her love blossoming for her husband.

However Mr Bradley added: “We have always helped and listened to each other.”

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The 10 couples' dedication to making their marriages work was evident during a special church service and it was clear that their relationships were based on commitment, understanding and perseverance.

As an example, when Dennis and Molly Hipperson were married in the second world war, Mr Hipperson was on a seven-day pass from the armed forces and he did not see his new wife again for four years.

The celebration service was organised by the Rev John Beauchamp. He said: “I am delighted that we are able to welcome such wonderful and loving couples to the church.

“Marriage is one of the strongest bonds we have and it is so heart- warming to have so many couples here today.

“When you listen to them, it is easy to see that although they may have struggled at some points, their love and commitment has shone through and forged a strong loving marriage.”

The other couples celebrating 60 or more years of marriage in the Beccles area were: Douglas and Prudence Brown, Alan and Vera Sturman, Geoffrey and Dorothy Earl, Alan and Dorothy Harris, Basil and Grace Hawes, Frank and Dorothy Finch, Ted and Betty Thwaites and Harry and Stella Perry.

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