Love was not lost for childhood sweethearts Michael and Audrey Goodall, who celebrated their diamond wedding at the weekend after 60 precious years together.
Audrey, 80 and Mick, also 80, have lived in Waterlooville for over 50 years, but were both born in Havant, where they met.
‘Mick and I went to Bosmere Junior School and became friends with each other,’ says Audrey.
‘We didn’t start courting until we got older and when we left school we became more serious. We just clicked.’
Audrey married Mick at the Havant Congregational Church in 1956.
The couple had two sons, Malcolm, 58 and Andrew, 56. They also have two grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
Football has been a big part of the couple’s lives over the years, as not only was Mick a talented wood machinist and an employee of the Portsmouth Water Company, he was also an amateur footballer.
‘Mick loves football, he played for so many different teams,’ says Audrey.
‘There was Gosport Borough, Portsmouth Youth Team, Portsmouth Ex-Professionals, Waterlooville and Sutton United to name a few.’
Mick reached the FA Amateur Cup Final in 1963 with Sutton United.
The team lost 4-2 to Wimbledon, but Mick scored one of his team’s goals that day with a header that was the talk of the town.
The football lover also had a trial for Chelsea at the age of 19, where he played in the same team as Jimmy Greaves.
Unfortunately, he couldn’t join the club because he was about to do his National Service.
Along with the football triumphs, the diamond couple have enjoyed many wonderful times over the years.
Audrey, who worked at A&E Chapman’s Laundry for 11 years and for Vospers at Portchester for 13 years, says: ‘We went on holiday every year and took some amazing trips with friends.
‘We went to Malta for about 13 years running because Mick had relations over there.
‘We also used to go up to Yorkshire in the car, which was lovely.’
Perhaps one of the couple’s biggest highlights though, was winning the lottery almost 10 years ago.
‘We won £50,010, both of us were so overwhelmed when we found out,’ says Audrey.
‘We went to the post office in Portsmouth to collect our winnings, but they could only pay up to £50,000.
‘The extra £10 meant we had to wait!
‘It was definitely a great time in our lives.’
Pauline Aylmer is the couple’s neighbour and has lived next to them for 33 years. She says: ‘Audrey and Mick have been like a second mum and dad to me.
‘I’ve heard so much laughter coming from their house over the years, they are a lovely couple who have helped me out so much.’
Audrey wanted to mark the couple’s diamond wedding by getting their story into the Let’s Celebrate pages.
‘Me doing this is my present to Mick,’ says Audrey. ‘He would do anything for anyone, he’s such a kind person.’
‘I’m chuffed to think that we’ve got this far, he’s looked after me all these years and we’ve worked and shared everything with each other.
‘I just couldn’t fault the time we’ve had together.’