Eastney couple celebrate 60 years of laughing together
‘We’ve had a lovely life together,’ says Joy as she smiles at her husband of 60 years, Jim Crossland.
‘He’s always making me laugh.’
And it was Jim’s sense of humour that stood out for Joy, nee Goodwin, when they first met in September 1957.
Joy says: ‘I moved to Eastney from Stoke-on-Trent when I was 15 because my father retired here. I was 16 when I met Jim, who was 19 at the time. Jim was based at Eastney Barracks.
‘We met in St Andrew’s Church, Eastney. My friend asked me to go along to the Royal Marine Parade and said it would be fun, so I went too.
‘She went and sat with the Marines during the service, which she wasn’t supposed to do but I followed her anyway.
‘Jim changed places to sit next to me. During the service, he flipped to the back of the leaflet which was headed “marriage services” and pointed at me. I couldn’t stop laughing.
‘He was making me laugh – that’s just how he is.
‘We were talking once we were outside too and we set a date for that Thursday,’ recalls Joy, 78.
‘And it all went from there.’
As the happy couple got on so well, it wasn’t a surprise when Jim, who is originally from Scotland, proposed on Eastney seafront.
‘I was so happy,’ reminisces Joy.
The couple tied the knot on March 28, 1959, at St Andrew’s Church, Eastney – the church where they met.
‘It was lovely. I remember looking out the window and I could see him waiting for me outside the church.’
The Crosslands moved to their first home in Locksway Road, Milton, for eight months before moving to Malta.
‘We went to Malta for two and a half years while he was in the marines.
‘It’s so unspoilt there, we loved it. We still go back when we can.’
When the Crosslands were back on British turf, they lived in Plymouth for two years and then moved back to Portsmouth.
In 1968, the couple had their daughter Lucy, who grew up in Stamshaw, and today are grandparents to Jade.
To mark their diamond anniversary, Jim and Joy celebrated with their family and friends at the Royal Marines Club, Eastney, on March 30.
‘Men can drive you up the wall but Jim always has me laughing,’ says Joy. ‘We always talk about things and laugh about things.’
Smiling at his wife, Jim, 81, adds: ‘She only has good points and she has always cared for me.’