Sunderland couple celebrate six decades of marriage

Eddie and Joan Bilton toast their 65th wedding anniversary

Eddie and Joan Bilton toast their 65th wedding anniversary

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More than six decades after their eyes met at a dance, a couple are celebrating a milestone anniversary.

Eddie and Joan Bilton have enjoyed 65 years of marriage after getting wed on June 24, 1950, at Silksworth Church.

Eddie and Joan Bilton toast their 65th wedding anniversary

Eddie and Joan Bilton toast their 65th wedding anniversary

The pair met at the Miners’ Hall in Silksworth.

“We met at the Miners’ Hall dance one Saturday,” recalls Eddie, 87. “Joan was 17 then. I danced with her and then we danced together all the time.”

The pair went on to have two daughters, Maureen, 61, and Heather, 50, and enjoyed a happy working life with Eddie working as a surveyor in the coal board and Joan, now 86, as a civil servant.

Speaking about the secret to a happy marriage, Eddie, of East Herrington, said: “We’ve never fallen out.”

The couple will celebrate their anniversary with a gathering at The Stackyard in West Herrington.