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Minster couple celebrate 60 years of marriage after first meeting at a dance

By Lewis Dyson

A simple request for a dance changed the lives of Minster couple Stephen and Doreen Cousins.

They first set eyes on each other at Battersea Town Hall and romance blossomed. They married in 1954, and on Thursday, April 3, they celebrated their diamond wedding anniversary.

The pair are members of Warden Bay Over-50s Club and the other members organised a party for them with champagne at Warden Bay Village Hall.

Stephen and Doreen Cousins who have celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary
Stephen and Doreen Cousins who have celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary

Mr Cousins, 82, said: “It was a real surprise for us because we didn’t know anything about it.

“It said ‘happy anniversary’ on the wall and they clubbed together and bought us a couple of things.”

He recalled the first encounter with his wife, 81, saying: “I went and asked her for a dance and that was it. We just clicked.”

He was a carpenter and joiner and she worked for the shop Peter Jones on a sewing machine, and they moved into a home in Battersea.

For 35 years they visited a caravan on the Isle of Sheppey and 14 years ago, after they retired, they bought a bungalow in Shurland Avenue. They have two daughters and a son, as well as seven grandchildren.

Mr Cousins accompanied his wife on a trip to King’s Bingo in Broadway, Sheerness, on Saturday, April 5, where their anniversary was announced over the loudspeaker.

When asked what is the secret to staying together for 60 years, he said: “We have a little barney now and again I suppose, but marriage isn’t perfect is it? But we still love each other and we help each other out. That’s it.”

Their granddaughter Amy Napp, 30, who lives in Surrey, sent off for a letter from the Queen to commemorate their anniversary and it has now been framed.

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