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Woolton Hill couple's 65 years of 'give and take'

“It is all about compromise”  

Charlotte Booth

Charlotte Booth


01635 886637

Woolton Hill couple's 65 years of 'give and take'

THE sun shone for a Woolton Hill couple who celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary last week. 

Doreen Pearce, 83, and her husband Harry, 86, were childhood sweethearts, first getting together when Doreen was 14 and Harry was 17. 

They met at an Old-Time dancing class, which they both attended regularly.

Mrs Pearce said: “He always asked me to dance.”

They married in 1953 at Woolton Hill church, two years after Mr Pearce proposed on a bridge over the river at Sonning. 

Mrs Pearce said the key to a long marriage was “give and take”.

She said: “You can’t say that you have never had a row or fallen out, but it has to be give and take.”

Mr Pearce said: “It is just a matter of getting on with it. You take the bad with the good.

“It is all about compromise.”  

Throughout their 65-year marriage they have always used nicknames for each other, with Mr Pearce being known as Ducky and Mrs Pearce being Lover. 

The start of their marriage was difficult as they got married while Mr Pearce was on leave from the army.

He joined the 11th Hussars in 1951 and had been deployed abroad.

Following the wedding, he was deployed to Malaya for three years –  during which time the only contact they had was through letters, which they have kept safe for the whole of their marriage. 

While he was on active duty in Malaya, Mr Pearce lost an eye and was in a hospital in Singapore.

He said: “Doreen threatened to come out to see me in hospital, but because I was on active duty it wasn’t allowed.”

Mrs Pearce added: “I was really concerned, but they wouldn’t let me go. It was horrific”

They celebrated their 65th anniversary by having a family meal at the Traveller’s Friend, Crookham Common, on Sunday. 

They have two daughters, Shirley Coleman and Diane Martin, four grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

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