Bexley pensioner returns parents’ marriage certificate to Gretna Green

PUBLISHED: 16:39 11 January 2013 | UPDATED: 16:40 11 January 2013

John and Ellen Crossman with the display case in the Famous Blacksmiths Shop

John and Ellen Crossman with the display case in the Famous Blacksmiths Shop


Bexley pensioner Ellen Crossman paid an emotional visit to Gretna Green to return her parents’ marriage certificate to the place they tied the knot 76 years ago.

Stan and Mary Rayson married just over the Scottish border in the destination made famous for runaway weddings because they were not old enough to get hitched in England without parental consent.

They wed in the Famous Blacksmiths Shop and the 76-year-old thought it was right that the certificate was on show in the venue along with family photographs in a special display case.

Ellen, of Joydens Wood Road, said: “In their later years we nicknamed them Darby and Joan because they were inseparable and were devoted to each other.

“They had such a happy marriage it felt right to return their wedding certificate to the Famous Blacksmiths Shop where it all began.”

Mary died in 1996 and it was not until Stan passed away last year that Ellen found the marriage certificate in his belongings.

She travelled to Gretna with John, her husband of almost 60 years, at the end of last month.

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