April 24 2014 Latest news:
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
A Norfolk couple have celebrated 60 years together by renewing their vows in front of friends and family.
Robert and June Bird, from Salhouse, met at a dance around 63 years ago when Mrs Bird, 16, fell over coming off the dancefloor and was rescued by her soon-to-be husband.
They began talking and made arrangements to meet again.
Mr Bird, 19, was studying a cabinet maker apprenticeship when he was called up for national service, during which he quickly became a lance corporal.
Towards the end of his two-year service Mr Bird wrote to ask for leave to marry his girlfriend, a letter he still keeps in their marriage book.
The couple were married at a ceremony in Witton Church.
Soon after, they had their first child Dawn, who was followed by Jacquita and Alan.
The family initially had “a hard time of it”, according to Mr Bird.
Their first marital home was a caravan but, through their family, they bought a house in Thorpe Hamlet.
Over the years the family bought and sold property across Norfolk before settling in Salhouse in 1996.
Mr Bird, whose sporting interests included football, cycle speedway and hot-rod racing, worked for a shopfitting company on sites such as the Bell Hotel and Jarrold’s.
The Norwich City season-ticket holder was headhunted to join Anglian Double Glazing, where he worked for 23 years before being recruited to Aspen Windows, where he stayed until he retired at 66.
Mrs Bird, a keen darts and bingo player, worked in various jobs, including at the Colman printers and as a cleaner for 27 years.
The couple, who also have four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, celebrated their diamond wedding at the Oaklands Hotel in Norwich in front of 42 guests.
When asked for any pearls of wisdom Mr Bird said “life is what you make it” and added that although everyone has arguments, “we just got over it and carried on”.
“We married each other because we loved each other and that was enough,” he went on.
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