Nelson couple celebrate 60 years of wedded bliss

Doreen and Keith Walmsley of Nelson celebrate their Diamond Wedding Anniversary
Doreen and Keith Walmsley of Nelson celebrate their Diamond Wedding Anniversary
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Teenage sweethearts Keith and Doreen Walmsley celebrated their Diamond Wedding Anniversary on Thursday.

Surviving six decades of marriage was never going to be a problem for the Nelson couple, who, even today, share the same interests – theatre, dancing and the Scout and Guides movement.

Doreen and Keith Walmsley of Nelson celebrate their Diamond Wedding Anniversary

Doreen and Keith Walmsley of Nelson celebrate their Diamond Wedding Anniversary

They first clapped eyes on each other aged 13 and 14 at a youth dance at what was then Carr Road Methodist Chapel.

They were married at the same place on September 1st, 1956.

Mrs Walmsley (85) said: “We were wartime children and in those days we had no televisions in our homes so the young people used to either meet at the pictures or dances.

“We were teenagers when we met and we wanted to learn to dance together.

“We really enjoy dancing and have danced together ever since.”

The couple made their first home in Delph Mount, Nelson and 15 years later they moved to Hibson Road, where they have lived since 1971.

Mr Walmsley (86) was well known in the town for running a shoe repairer’s business in Railway Street, and was later a volunteer with the St John Ambulance, while Mrs Walmsley is renowned for her decades of commitment to the local Guides and Brownies.

She was eight when she joined the Brownies and remained with the movement for an impressive 57 years - eventually becoming Brownie leader and assistant Guider with the eighth Nelson Central Methodist Guide Company and later rising to Nelson Division Commissioner for the Girl Guiding Association.

The couple were also instrumental in launching Nelson’s French connection with Creil in France back in the 1980s.

A vintage and classic car enthusiast, Mr Walmsley enjoyed visiting classic car shows and maintaining his Rover 2000, which he has recently sold.

The couple celebrated the milestone anniversary on Sunday at the Higher Trapp, Simonstone, surrounded by their two children - Joanne and Ian, four grandchildren and two great-granddaughters.

And the celebrations didn’t stop there as the diamond couple hosted an open house yesterday where they were visited by family and friends, well-wishers and Pendle Mayor Coun. Rosemary Carroll and her mayoress, Carol Belshaw-Goulthorp.

When asked the secret to their long and happy marriage, Mrs Walmsley replied: “To share the same interests and to listen to each other.

“We both loved dancing, visiting the theatre, Scouts and Guides - these things kept us very happy and busy.”