'As soon as I saw him I thought he looked a bit of alright!' Grandma, 71, marries 84-year-old neighbour
PUBLISHED: 11:46 23 October 2018 | UPDATED: 16:59 23 October 2018
A real life "autumn years" fairytale has captured the hearts of an entire community as an elderly couple tied the knot after four years as neighbours.
Rosie Bell, 71, and Barry Williamson, 84, celebrated their marriage at the Redmayne View housing care scheme in Sprowston on Saturday, following an official ceremony at St Cuthbert’s Church, on Wroxham Road, the previous Wednesday.
More than 100 family, friends, residents and staff joined the couple at their reception, with numerous donations made by businesses and well-wishers to make the day extra special.
The now Mrs Williamson said her new husband swept her off her feet after moving into Redmayne in 2014.
She said: “I knew there was a spark straight away. As soon as I saw him I thought he looked a bit of alright!
“We used to play cards together and he would come down for a coffee in the morning so we got to know each other.”
When they first met, her terminally ill husband was being cared for in a nursing home and she said it was painful coming to terms with the fact he would not be coming home.
Mr Williamson had lost his wife four years earlier and she said their mutual understanding and friendship started to blossom into love after her husband’s death two years ago.
She added: “It helps the new come around.”
The couple’s families were heavily involved with the wedding, with the bride’s son, James Sutton, giving her away and Mr Williamson’s grandson, Joe Siggins, taking the role of best man.
Staff at Redmayne also played a big part, transforming the dining room into a venue complete with candle-lit bird cages, a flower arch and chapel seating.
Sandra Spanton, manager at the scheme, said: “We put out an appeal on social media for help on the day and so many people came forward with offers of help, including an organ player, photographer, car and chauffeur, an arch for the ceremony and so many other things. So many wonderful people got involved.”
The couple said they are looking forward to spending Christmas together with their families in their new shared flat.
Mrs Williamson added: “We enjoy every day of our lives together. Its just marvellous.”