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Home   Gravesend   News   Article

Couple from St James Oaks, in Trafalgar Road, Gravesend, celebrate 60 years of happy married life

14 March 2014
by Julia Roberts

The couple celebrated their diamond wedding anniversary with friends and family, and a special message from the Queen.

Mr and Mrs Pilcher, both 83, met as children but it was not until Mr Pilcher started playing football with Mrs Pilcher’s brother Brian that they found love.

Berry and Maureen Pilcher on their wedding day in February 1954

Berry and Maureen Pilcher on their wedding day in February 1954


She said: “We all went to Sunday school at the Salvation Army but I didn’t take much notice of him in those days and Berry and his sister drifted away.

“But then he started playing football with Brian. My dad used to run the team and the players would come around to talk tactics.

"Berry told me one day he saw me combing my hair in the mirror and he thought: ‘That will do for me’.”

The couple were 21 when they started courting and tied the knot two years later at the Salvation Army Hall, now occupied by Tesco in New Road, Gravesend, on February 27, 1954.

Mrs Pilcher said: “When I go in, I try to work out exactly where it was in the store that we were married. It was either by the bacon counter or the baker’s.”

The couple had their reception at St Mark’s Church Hall in London Road, Northfleet.

They started married life living with Mrs Pilcher’s parents in Old Road West, Gravesend, before moving into their own home in the town and had sons, Graham, now 55, and Adrian, 50.

Berry and Maureen Pilcher celebrating 60 years of marriage at a surprise tea party

Berry and Maureen Pilcher celebrating 60 years of marriage at a surprise tea party

Mr Pilcher worked for BT in London until he retired at 57, while Mrs Pilcher worked at The Co-op in Pelham Road.

They live in St James Oaks, in Trafalgar Road, where home life is a true family affair.

Their neighbours include Mr Pilcher’s sister, Bett, 80, who married Mrs Pilcher’s brother, Brian, 85.

Another neighbour is Mrs Pilcher’s other brother, Ken, 88.

Mrs Pilcher said: “It’s lovely that we all live together and my mum would be thrilled.”

The couple, who have a granddaughter, Sophie, 26, celebrated their anniversary with a surprise afternoon tea party with family.

Sadly, Mr Pilcher now suffers from Parkinson’s, but the couple are still very much a team.

When asked about the secret to a lasting marriage, Mrs Pilcher said: “It hasn’t all been honey and roses and you get your moments. We just pull together.”

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