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Greenham couple celebrate special sapphire anniversary

When asked what their secret to a long-lasting marriage is, the couple agreed quarrelling was never an option.

Fiona Tomas

Fiona Tomas

fiona.tomas@newburynews.co.uk

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01635 886639

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WHEN Dorothy and Albert Smith tied the knot, Winston Churchill was Prime Minister, you could buy a pint of beer for 11p and it would be four months until Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation.  

That was on February 28, 1953, and yesterday (Wednesday), the Greenham couple celebrated 65 happy years of marriage together.

It means Mr and Mrs Smith will, in official terms, be celebrating their sapphire jubilee, the term first coined last year to mark the 65th anniversary of the reign of Queen Elizabeth II. 

Mr Smith, 85, lived in the next street to Mrs Smith nee Ferguson, 83, in Manor Park, Slough, where the pair grew up and met as teenagers. 

Their relationship started when they used to pass each other on their daily walk to school.

Mrs Smith said: “Albert used to see me going to school, because he had pals up that way, so we used to pass each other every day and that was the start of it.

“It is kind of a sweet, childhood story, really. He only lived down the next corner from me.”

They started going out when Dorothy was 15, before Albert plucked up the courage and asked her to be his wife three years later, marrying in St Mary’s Church in Farnham Royal, Slough. 

The couple moved to Greenham in 1988 and over the years have watched their family expand to six children, nine grandchildren and eight great grandchildren, with two more great-grandchildren on the way.

Mrs Smith said: “I can’t quite believe we’ve reached 65 years together. It’s gone so quick.

“Our youngest children, who are twins, are 60 this year – now that makes me feel old.”

When asked what their secret to a long-lasting marriage is, the couple agreed quarrelling was never an option.

Mrs Smith said: “You have to correspond with each other. You have to talk with one another.

“We’ve had our differences of opinion, obviously, but that’s natural.”

Mr Smith added: “We’ve never had an argument. If one of us wins an argument, so what? To me it doesn’t prove anything.”

Five years ago, the couple received a special letter from the Queen and are they expecting another one this time round.

To celebrate the special occasion, the couple enjoyed a family gathering at their Greenham home last Sunday, although they insist celebrations on the actual day will be kept low key.

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