Harry, 91, and Vera Davies, 78, celebrated their diamond wedding on December 2 surrounded by friends at their home in Southsea and two days later, enjoyed a visit from their whole family.
Vera says her wedding day, a day she says she’ll ‘never forget’, took place at Portsmouth Register Office.
‘There was just a desk and about six chairs’
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‘There were five of us, we ended up round Harry’s mum’s eating fish and chips and then me and Harry went home to our flat,’ she says.
Vera says things were simpler then and ‘money was short,’ but while they didn’t have the means or need for a lavish wedding, the day was everything they wanted.
Both from Portsmouth, the pair met when Vera was just 15 and were married three years later.
They lived together at their home at Garnier Street, Fratton, for 51 years before moving to Southsea as they both grew more frail.
At the time of their marriage Vera was pregnant with their first boy Glen. ‘When my father walked me down the aisle he said “well I won’t ask do you want to marry this man because you’ve got to”,’ she says
The couple went on to enjoy 60 happy years together and counting, going on to have three other children, Tony, Mark and Neil who all live locally to their parents bar Glen who lives in Yorkshire.
However, he visits regularly and ensured he was there to celebrate his parents' diamond wedding which was particularly special as many of them had not seen each other since the Covid-19 lockdown.
‘We didn’t even realise we had no music on, we were all too busy chatting and catching up,’ says Vera.
The couple, who first met through Vera’s father who played darts with Harry, got off to a rocky start.
‘We didn’t like each other at first, mind you I was only 15, I told him I didn’t like him and he said I was a stuck up so and so,’ Vera laughs.
‘He looked a lot younger, he never looked his age and I was a dollybird,’ Vera says.
Harry and Vera began to see each other in a different light when they both attended a party when she was 17 and Harry made his feelings for Vera quite clear.
‘All the lights went out, he bent forward and kissed me and that was it,’ she says.
A brave move from Harry, as Vera says in all other aspects he was shy until 10 years into their marriage when he ‘changed for the better’ and now ‘you can’t shut him up,’ she jokes.
The pair were engaged on Vera’s 18th birthday while on a coach trip. She confidently announced: ‘I’m going to end up marrying you’ and Harry of course agreed.
‘I love him to bits, he’s very funny, he’s getting forgetful now but he still makes me laugh every single day,’ says Vera.
Vera says Harry has made her promise not to ‘go’ before him ‘that’ll be me finished if you go’, she quotes.
The pair have never stopped dancing, Vera says, and they’re sure this is one of the keys to a happy marriage.
A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron
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