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Football fans celebrate 60 years of marriage

09 September, 2016 - 06:30
Rita and Brian Harmer have celebrated their diamond wedding anniversary. 

Picture: James Bass

Rita and Brian Harmer have celebrated their diamond wedding anniversary. Picture: James Bass

(C) Archant Norfolk 2016

Canaries fans Rita and Brian Harmer have celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.

Brian and Rita Harmer on their wedding day.Brian and Rita Harmer on their wedding day.

The couple, who live in Worlingham, have been attending Norwich City games since they were young, and after taking their own children along to home and away matches, they still share a passion for the yellows and are season ticket holders.

The couple were both born in Norwich and met at a dance at the Lido Ballroom in the city in 1953.

But it wasn’t until Mr Harmer’s twin sisters started working at Reckitt & Colman - the same place Mrs Harmer worked after leaving school - that they got together. Through his sisters, Mr Harmer asked her out to a dinner and dance. And three years later they tied the knot at St Giles Church in Norwich on September 8, 1956.

Mr Harmer, now 84, spent his working life in the printing industry, working for firms in Norwich, Beccles, Lowestoft and Saffron Walden, stopping for two years to do his National Service in the RAF.

The couple moved to Beccles in 1965 and together they have four children, four grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

They both share a love of reading, but their main hobby has always been cheering on the players at Carrow Road.

Mrs Harmer, 80, said: “We both used to go when we were children, but we didn’t know each other then.

“Then when we met and had a family we used to drag them along too and squash them in the car for away matches.

“When they grew up we got our season tickets which we’ve had for well over 40 years.

“We just love football and love the atmosphere.

“We’ve sat near the same people for years and when the season starts it’s like meeting up with friends again.”

The duo kicked off their anniversary celebrations with their youngest son last weekend and invited friends and neighbours over to celebrate the milestone yesterday - the day of their anniversary. And on Sunday they will be enjoying a barbecue lunch with all their family.

When asked the secret to their long and happy marriage Mr Harmer said: “We are not just husband and wife, we are also good friends. And we’ve got a lovely family who keep us on our toes.”

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