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Diamond couple put family first

PUBLISHED: 10:48 27 August 2009 | UPDATED: 17:04 25 August 2010

SPARKLE: Geoff and Betty celebrate their 60th wedding

SPARKLE: Geoff and Betty celebrate their 60th wedding

A HAPPY couple will be celebrating their diamond wedding anniversary with their best man and bridesmaid from 60 years ago.

WEDDING DAY: The couple with their bridesmaid and best man in 1949.

A HAPPY couple will be celebrating their diamond wedding anniversary with their best man and bridesmaid from 60 years ago.

Geoff Hunt, 89, and wife Betty, 83, of Langford Place, Sidcup, will be celebrating their landmark anniversary today after the courtship began on a holiday in Weymouth.

At their celebration meal at Frogpool Manor Restaurant, in Chislehurst, this Saturday will be the bride's sister Joan Housely, from Petts Wood, who was their bridesmaid and Ralph Hunt, from Salisbury - the groom's brother who was also the best man at the wedding in 1949.

Their wedding vows were exchanged in the same church where the groom's parents married in 1902 - St Andrew's Church in Court Road, Mottingham.

His parents, who also reached their diamond anniversary, claimed to have never said a cross word to each other.

Mr Hunt said: "They used to say they never said a cross word to each other and I think that can be said of us too.

"The secret to a happy marriage is tolerance, patience, hard work and respect.

"Possibly respect is the first. When we first met, my wife was reserved as she had a very closed life. We didn't have a lot time to play because we always worked."

Mrs Hunt, the eldest of three siblings helped look after her family from the age of 17 when her father, who was an air raid warden in Mottingham Road, Mottingham, died when a German V-1 bomb fell on the shelter in 1944.

The same bomb also damaged their family home forcing the family to temporarily relocate to their grandmother's in Grove Park.

Mrs Hunt, a former civil servant, said: "Women did not have careers in those days. You just took whatever job was available.

"I was looking for friendship to start with. It is difficult to remember everything as it was so long ago.

"The secret to a long marriage is patience, perseverance. It is hard work. It is nothing brilliant."

The grandparents and great grandparents are again following in the footsteps of Mr Hunt's parents, who also had their diamond anniversary featured in the Kentish Times, on March 30, 1962.

marina.soteriou@archant.co.uk

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