A diamond wedding is worth celebrating well and Charlie and Joan Sharpe did just that by going out for a meal and throwing two separate parties.
The Gosport couple celeb-rated their big day with their family at The Cocked Hat in the town.
The next day they threw a party for their neighbours at their home and on the Saturday they held a big bash for about 100 people at Gosport and Stokes Bay Golf Club.
‘Our anniversary was on a Thursday and we’d planned this party for the Saturday, so we thought we’d do something in between and invited the neighbours in. We were celebrating for three days, but thought “why not”,’ says Joan.
Charlie, 85, and 77-year-old Joan met at the Anglesey Hotel in Gosport after she went to meet her parents there. It had been raining and Charlie, who was serving in the navy and stationed in Gosport, lent Joan his mackintosh to go to a nearby dance. ‘I didn’t see her after that,’ he says but Joan explains that he was standing at the bar all evening – and they are both laughing now.
The pair began dating after that and were eventually married at St Mary’s, Alverstoke. They spent their honeymoon in the Isle of Wight and returned for their anniversary after their children gave them the trip as a present.
The couple lived for a while in Charlie’s native Lincolnshire but moved back to Gosport and raised their family – Colin, David, Patricia and Alison.
After leaving the navy Charlie worked as a driver and salesman for Walls fruit and vegetables and then as a builder.
Joan worked for 21 years at the Ferguson television factory in Gosport.
Charlie plays for a British Legion crib team and Joan has been a member of the Gosport-based St Vincent Singers for 30 years.
The couple have eight grandchildren and seven great grandchildren.