Golden joy for Hogsthorpe couple

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It may have been more than 50 years ago, but Jean Marriott, of Hogsthorpe, still remembers the moment she realised she had met her future husband.

“The first time he kissed me I knew I was going to marry him,” she said of Ron, with whom she has recently celebrated their golden wedding anniversary. “Stars must have come in my eyes, I don’t know what happened.”

Jean, 71, remembers Ron asking her at the end of their first date in the Yorkshire Dales, before she left the car and went back to her parents, if he could kiss her.

“He said ‘please could I kiss you?’ and I said ‘yes’,” she said.

“I went in and said ‘I’m going to marry that chap’ to my mum and dad – and I did.”

However, Jean had not been quite so convinced about Ron, 76, when the couple met for the first time a few days earlier at a wedding where Jean was a friend of the bride, and Ron was best man.

“When I first met him, he’d had about nine big glasses of Mackeson stout,” she said.

“He was falling over. He was a right silly boy.”

But Jean had been told ahead of that first impression that she and Ron were “made for each other”.

She added: “It seems we were.”

After their marriage in September, 1966, the couple, who hail from Sheffield, moved to Burgh le Marsh where they ran a petrol station together for 15 years.

During their working life, they would go on to sell popcorn, Slush and candy floss at Butlin’s, and later run a fish and chip shop in Skegness.

“We always worked together,” said Jean. “We absolutely loved each other to bits – and we still do.”

They have two children, Helen, 40, and David, 35, and two grandchildren, Cameron, 20, and Robyn, 15.

The secret to a long marriage, Ron gave as “being faithful, honest and true”.

Jean added that Ron was a best man when they first met ... and over the years he has remained just that.