A devoted couple have celebrated half a century of married bliss – just months after one of the pair successfully overcame cancer.
Hetton husband and wife Alan and Margaret Jackson tied the knot in September 1965 at Eppleton Church, which is now no more.
I’ve not had the official all clear, I’ve got to be on tablets for five years, but I’m cancer free and that’s all that matters right now.Margaret Jackson
They met in their teens after Margaret moved from nearby Easington Lane to Hetton.
Alan, 71, and Margaret, 70, went out to dances and regularly met at a cafe during their courtship, before moving in together in the town. A miner, Alan worked at Eppleton and Murton pits, then working as a security officer for Lockharts before retirement, while Margaret was a school cleaner.
Their life together has been happy apart from Margaret being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012.
“I had to have a mastectomy, chemotherapy and everything else, but I’ve got through it all,” said Margaret.
“I’ve not had the official all clear.
“I’ve got to be on tablets for five years, but I’m cancer-free and that’s all that matters right now.”
The couple, who have a daughter Sharon, 48, and a grandaughter, Sian, 23, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with a trip to the Chilton Country Pub, near Fence Houses, before having a party at their George Street home, surrounded by family and friends.
“We had a great time even though it was a cold night,” added Margaret.