Fam­ily lunch marks cou­ple’s 65 years

Surrey Advertiser - - Front Page -

FRIEND­SHIP, com­pan­ion­ship and a stern telling off have been the key in­gre­di­ents for one Guild­ford cou­ple who are cel­e­brat­ing 65 years of mar­riage.

Cyril West, 89, met his wife-to-be Jill, named Dorothy Anne, 86, when they were both work­ing at Royal Sur­rey County Hos­pi­tal in the orig­i­nal build­ing in Farn­ham Road.

Af­ter their first en­counter they got en­gaged on Jill’s 20th birth­day in 1951 and mar­ried just over a year later at Mil­ford Church on Septem­ber 13 1952.

The pair went on to have a trio of sons, John, Peter and their youngest David.

Tragedy, how­ever, struck the fam­ily when their son John died aged 45 just a month af­ter their golden wed­ding an­niver­sary in 2002.

John had de­vel­oped type 1 di­a­betes when he was 14 and coped with it for many years but even­tu­ally suf­fered a heart at­tack.

When asked if the happy cou­ple dis­cov­ered the se­cret to wed­ded bliss, Mr West said: “I would be fool­ish to say we got on all the time but when we had a row and a few dis­agree­ments we just got on with it.

“We had some ter­rific rows over the years but we are both of the same tem­per­a­ment.

“We didn’t get up­set about work, some peo­ple let that af­fect them but we just worked, came home, raised our fam­ily and that was that.”

At first the cou­ple learned how to live to­gether in one room be­fore be­ing of­fered a coun­cil home where they have now lived for more than 60 years.

Jill found a job very close to home as a class­room as­sis­tant at Pond Meadow School just next door while Cyril worked as a con­tracts en­gi­neer.

They both re­tired at the same time and en­joyed 26 years of rel­a­tive free­dom.

“We are a lit­tle bit sur­prised,” Mr West said af­ter achiev­ing their lat­est an­niver­sary mile­stone.

“I do not think we ex­pected to reach this. We had our di­a­mond wed­ding an­niver­sary, 60 years, we were de­lighted with that and this one. My wife is not is not in the best of health, I am in bet­ter health, but it is quite an achieve­ment.”

Mr West’s main hobby was foot­ball with his love for the sport “blos­som­ing in the 1960s” when he took part in the ref­eree train­ing course and also be­came in­volved in the ad­min­is­tra­tion of lo­cal foot­ball.

Hav­ing cel­e­brated their golden and di­a­mond an­niver­saries with a large event, the pair de­cided to keep things qui­eter this year.

“Our youngest is up in Lon­don, he works on the DLR line. He was born in 1960 and is 57,” added Mr West. “He is com­ing down here on Wed­nes­day. He is pick­ing us up and pick­ing up our other son who lives in Go­dalm­ing.

“We are go­ing to the Fren­sham Pond Ho­tel for lunch.

“When we had our golden and di­a­mond wed­ding an­niver­sary we had an event.

“But we both said no to any­thing re­ally large this year. We have the fond­est of mem­o­ries and it will nice to share that with the fam­ily.”

Pic­ture: Keith Wood­land/ Crown Copy­right

Sean Gro­gan-Ed­wards re­ceives his cer­tifi­cate from Rear Admiral John Clink

Pic­ture: Steve Porter SA125530_3

Cyril and Jill West cel­e­brate 65 years of mar­ried life

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