‘Honesty, sharing and understanding’ the key to Harrogate couple’s 65 years together

NADV 1509078AM1 John (86) and Doreen (88) Brown who celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary. (1509078AM1)
NADV 1509078AM1 John (86) and Doreen (88) Brown who celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary. (1509078AM1)

A devoted Harrogate couple celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary surrounded by their loving sons on Wednesday, September 2.

John and Doreen Brown grew up in Tamworth, Staffordshire, and met when they were teenagers, aged 17 and 19 respectively, through various social gatherings arranged through the church.

NADV 1509078AM3 John and Doreen Brown who celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary. (1509078AM3)

NADV 1509078AM3 John and Doreen Brown who celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary. (1509078AM3)

After they married four years later at Wilnecote Parish Church, the couple went on to have two children, Robert, 62 and David, 57 before they moved to Harrogate in October 2014.

John and Doreen decided to move to Harrogate to be better supported by their son David, after John was admitted to a nursing home in Lichfield Staffs two years previously.

The couple said that some of their happiest moments together were building up a vast network of friends from Tamworth to South Africa.

John said: “My job has meant numerous house moves from Tamworth, to South Africa, Leicester, Scotland and more latterly Lichfield in Staffs.

“One of our particularly found memories was our time in South Africa between 1960 to 1962 with my work.

“We were travelling both ways by cruise ship, both of our boys were born by then and Doreen’s parents could visit us on holiday, long before the time of mass foreign holidays of travel.”

Throughout his career, John worked for Dunlop firstly in the laboratories before moving through the tanks to become Technical Director of Dunlop Tyres before retiring at the age of 55.

Doreen spent her time as a full time housewife with the couple stating that they used to enjoy going to local ‘Whist drives’ in Lichfield.

However, John has spent the last three years in nursing homes following the onset of Parkinson’s disease meaning Doreen could no longer look after him.

John’s devoted wife now visits him every day at Bilton Hall Nursing Home with both of them being able to see their sons and grandchildren more often after their move.

To celebrate their incredible achievement, Robert and his wife teamed up with David to take their parents out of for the day to enjoy lunch and share time with the family.

After the celebrations, Doreen revealed the secrets to their long-lasting marriage.

She said: “Honesty, sharing, understanding each others roles and limitations and most importantly being prepared to compromise.”

David said: “It’s great to see my parents still in love after all these years.

“Whilst ill health is now stopping them from being as close as they would like to, the memories are strong and with family support they can still be with one another on a daily basis.”