Those that bowl to­gether, stay to­gether

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE - KRIS DANDO

Anne Sole says lawn bowls is ‘‘a stupid game’’ but tak­ing it up was the only way to spend time with her hus­band af­ter she re­tired.

‘‘It def­i­nitely was a case of ‘if you can’t beat ‘ em, join ‘ em’, be­cause Bar­rie was never home,’’ she said.

‘‘Bowls has meant a lot to us – we have great friends through the game and it keeps us healthy and ac­tive.’’

Now long-time mem­bers of Tawa Ser­vices Bowl­ing Club, the Soles will cel­e­brate 60 years of mar­riage on June 23.

Both are 83, but as Bar­rie is six weeks older, he said he’s the boss.

‘‘I thought I might get a Queen’s Birth­day hon­our for putting up with Anne for 60 years,’’ he said.

Anne, on a more se­ri­ous note, said be­ing mar­ried 60 years had been about friend­ship and com­pro­mise.

‘‘Some­times one of you can’t man­age with­out the sup­port of the other – one of you has to be stronger. For us, it’s al­ways been a real part­ner­ship.’’

The As­cot Park cou­ple, orig­i­nally from New Ply­mouth, love their adopted city, in which they have lived since 1963.

Their first home was in Ti­tahi Bay, be­fore mov­ing to Con­clu­sion St. From the back of their home you can see the Aotea sub­di­vi­sion, which Bar­rie has watched grow from noth­ing.

‘‘When we moved here, it was just farm­land and a lot of gorse. The fire ser­vice was al­ways over there, putting out fires.’’

Af­ter mov­ing to Ti­tahi Bay, word got out about Bar­rie’s keen in­ter­est in rugby.

‘‘We’d only lived there a week and I got a knock on the door one night. Next thing I’m trea­surer of Ti­tahi Bay Rugby Club.

‘‘I’d gone down to Onepoto [Park] to watch a game, had a chat with some­one and word trav­elled fast.’’

Bar­rie worked for the Post Of­fice and later ANZ for 39 years, be­fore re­tir­ing in 1987.

Anne was well known in the com­mu­nity as a reg­is­tered nurse and ma­tron at Rus­sell Kemp Home. A lit­tle like Bar­rie and the rugby club, Anne was only sup­posed to be fill­ing in at Rus­sell Kemp for two week­ends in 1968, but fi­nally re­tired from there in 1990.

The cou­ple were also in­volved in Girls and Boys Brigade and Anne had a long con­nec­tion with Ti­tahi Bay Women’s In­sti­tute.

They have a son, John, and daugh­ter, Sue, one grand­child and two great-grand­chil­dren.

PHOTO: KRIS DANDO

Bar­rie and Anne Sole are ap­proach­ing their 60th wed­ding an­niver­sary.

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