Denmead couple tie the knot at care home after finding ‘love at first sight’ during the pandemic

CARE home residents who found love during the pandemic have now tied the knot in a special ceremony at their Denmead home.

Wednesday, 27th July 2022, 12:58 pm
Updated Friday, 29th July 2022, 3:52 pm

Derek Brown and Mary Turrell, residents of Easterlea Rest Home in Denmead, married on Tuesday and celebrated their vows with family and friends.

It was a double event for staff and residents as it was the first wedding hosted at the rest home.

The lovebirds - both aged 77 - met after Derek moved into the home just before Christmas.

Derek Brown and Mary Turrell at Easterlea Rest Home. Picture: Habibur Rahman

Mary has lived at Easterlea Rest Home for a number of years after moving into the home in 2017.

The pair quickly gravitated towards each other after meeting eyes ‘across a crowded room’.

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Derek, who is from Newcastle and has been married previously, said: ‘Mary was already here and my niece got me in here. That’s when we first met.

Derek and Mary with their friends and family at Easterlea Rest Home. Picture: Habibur Rahman

‘All of a sudden we got together, and ever since then we’ve been very, very close.’

Mary, from Aresford, who has been married twice previously, said: ‘It was love at first sight. He is everything I ever wanted.

‘Life can be tough but it brought me my perfect man.

‘We sing, we paint, dance if I can keep on my feet. Most things we do together.’

The couple share a kiss. Picture: Habibur Rahman

Bunting, flowers, and bows in pink, silver, and lilac decorated the home’s garden as guests and family members came together to enjoy food, drink, and cake.

Mary said: ‘We wanted to mingle all the families together so they get to know one another and keep seeing one another.’

The bride carried a pink and purple bouquet of blossoms, and the groom wore a matching bloom pinned to his shirt pocket.

Derek’s niece Kerry Silver and Mary’s daughter Jacquie Croughan were among the guests toasting to the happy couple.

Derek with his niece, Kerry Silver, and Mary with her daughter Jacquie Croughan. Picture: Habibur Rahman

Carol Boyce-Flowers is registered manager at Easterlea Rest Home.

She said: ‘We'd love to congratulate Derek on Mary on finding happiness at Easterlea, it was the first wedding we have hosted and are delighted that two of our residents found love at a time in their lives when some others have stopped looking.

‘Romance blossomed after Derek moved into Easterlea a year ago and they have since become inseparable.

‘Everyone really enjoyed the day.’

Derek was in the navy, and in his younger days he painted buses and later worked as a French polisher.

The couple found each other during the pandemic and got married at their care home on Tuesday, July 26. Picture: Habibur Rahman

After gaining her teaching qualifications in dance and P.E, Mary worked at Worthing High School.