MYSTERY and surprise was the theme of the day for Alford couple Albert and Bessie Willerton who celebrated their Diamond Wedding anniversary last Thursday.
The happy couple were whisked away on a secret getaway which had been arranged by their loving family, after reading all the celebratory cards, including one from Her Majesty The Queen.
Bessie, now 84, met Albert, also 84, while he worked as a taxi driver from Sutton On Sea, dropping off her boss at the solicitor’s firm in Alford where she worked, then both aged 21.
The couple then dated for around three years before getting engaged one Christmas and marrying the following September in 1952 at St Wilfrid’s Church, Alford.
A big white wedding was enjoyed by all and a large reception was held at The George, next to the church, attended by around 40 guests.
Albert’s mother, also lent the pair, an Austin Seven car to use for their honeymoon vacation in Devon.
After the wedding Albert and Bessie lived with Albert’s mother in Mabelthorpe to begin with.
But the floods in 1953 persuaded the pair to move to Alford, firstly in Finsbury Street and then West Street, where they still live 53 years later, making it their forever home.
The pair are blessed with two sons, Ivan born 1956, who lives in Tetney, and Mark 1967 who also lives in Alford.
Family has always been at the forefront for the couple and a lot of time over the years has been spent with their four grandsons, Adam, Alex, Caine and Cole, who they are very fond of.
During the years, Bessie continued to work at the solicitor’s firm in Alford and Albert enjoyed work at Hornby’s Garage in Sutton On Sea.
A lot of time was also spent holidaying both in England and abroad and the pair have always enjoyed living in Lincolnshire despite loving Torquay.
For the couple’s 50th Golden Wedding anniversary, Bessie said the pair were treated to a surprise party by their family.
Bessie said of the secret to a long and happy marriage, that in the early years, marriage and family was important as well as her growing sons and now their families had kept them all together. Bessie also says friendship and the number of years spent with Albert had made them stronger.