Shropshire's 'Golden Couples' celebrate

Golden couples took to the dance floor at a Shropshire hotel for a nostalgic event to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversaries.

Golden couples took to the dance floor at a Shropshire hotel for a nostalgic event to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversaries.

The commemorative tea dance was organised by the Shropshire Star and took place at the Albrighton Hall Hotel, near Shrewsbury, yesterday.

A total of 37 couples attended the event where they enjoyed afternoon tea with scones and cakes while listening to the wonderful Edna Jones playing a variety of old-time music on her musical organ.

Viv Birch, Midlands News Association promotions manager, said it had been a great day and congratulated the couples on reaching the important milestone.

She said the annual event had been held for a number of years.

Its purpose was to commemorate local people reaching half a century of marriage.

Mrs Birch said: “We changed it last year to a tea dance and everybody loved it so we decided to do it again this year.

Reminisce

“Edna was also hugely popular last time so we invited her back to play on her organ.

“We’ve had people who have not seen each other for years and then met up again and they love it because they can reminisce on their wedding days.”

Among the couples celebrating this year was Michael and Jean Jones, both 70, of Beckbury, Shifnal.

They tied the knot in 1961 at Holy Trinity Church in Oswestry.

Mrs Jones said their bond with each other had been particularly important over the past 15 years after she fought breast cancer some time ago but was diagnosed with bowel cancer last year.

The mother-of-three said that she underwent an operation and is still receiving treatment now.

But she said she has been given tremendous support by her husband during her illness.

Mrs Jones said: “I don’t know what I would do without him, he has done literally everything for me.”

Kneale Kelly, 75, and his wife Beryl, 73, of Wellington, were also among the couples attending the celebratory tea dance.

Mr Kelly said he and Beryl met after she was waiting for a boyfriend who was late for a date outside the Tontine Hotel in Ironbridge and he managed to sweep her away in his Vauxhall Velux.

He said: “I was driving past and I thought ‘I know that young lady’.

“I stopped and she said she was waiting but he hadn’t turned up so she jumped in the car and off we went.”

By Russell Roberts