Scooter ride to work sparked couple’s romance

Rita and David Thomas
Rita and David Thomas
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David Thomas had always known Rita White because he played football with her brother – but they had never really been that close.

It wasn’t until one day in 1960 when David spotted Rita at a bus stop in Clanfield and offered her a lift to work on his scooter that things changed.

David and Rita Thomas on their wedding day

David and Rita Thomas on their wedding day

At the time, Rita worked in Horndean at the Smith and Vospers bakery.

And the couple then spent the next 18 months courting one another until they were married on July 28, 1962, at Holy Trinity Church in Blendworth.

David and Rita then went on to spend their honeymoon in Guernsey.

David, 75, and Rita, 70, are now celebrating their golden wedding anniversary after 50 happy years of marriage.

They live in Waterlooville and throughout his career David worked as a plumber, while Rita worked a number of part-time jobs, including in a shop, a bar and as a dinner lady.

They have four children Janice, Mark, Cheryl and Mandy.

David and Rita also have seven grandchildren Natalie, Emily, Bryn, Faye, Jodie, Alfie and Mollie.

Rita says: ‘I had known David for a long time and we had always been friendly with one another, but it was when he came out of the army and picked me up that day that we began courting. He was always a little older than me, that’s why.’

To celebrate their landmark anniversary all of their children clubbed together and paid for them to go back to Guernsey where they honeymooned 50 years ago, with the happy couple arriving back yesterday.

Rita says: ‘We had such a lovely time. We stayed in a great guest house and the children paid for it all. They really did us proud.’

The anniversary celebrations will carry on throughout this week as daughter Janice, is coming over from Dubai to visit.

Rita believes the secret to their relationship is the fact that they are so well suited.

She says: ‘We give and take and we’ve just floated along quite happily really. It’s been lovely.

‘We’ve been really happy for these 50 years together.’