Southsea couple celebrate their special diamond anniversary
‘Where has the time gone since 1959?,’ smiles Gloria Philpott, as she reminisces about her wedding.
Now celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary, Gloria and Ray Philpott recall how they first met on South Parade Pier all those years ago.
Gloria, 81, says: ‘We met when I was 16 years old in 1954 at a dance on South Parade Pier.
‘When we first started dating, I used to ride on Ray’s motorbike and we hid it at the end of the road so my father wouldn’t find out,’ she laughs.
After two years together they planned to get married, however Gloria’s father told them they had to wait.
‘We took a trip to a pub in Emsworth on Ray’s motorbike,’ explains Gloria.
‘He asked me to marry him when I was 18. I said we needed permission from my father but he wouldn’t give me away until I was 21 years old.’
Shortly after her 21st birthday, Gloria walked down the aisle at Sultan Road Congregational Church, Portsmouth, on September 5, 1959, towards the love of her life Ray.
Surrounded by their friends and family, Gloria and Ray, 86, celebrated before they honeymooned in Jersey.
The Philpotts, from Southsea, have three children Angela, Martin and Glen as well as five grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
To celebrate their special diamond anniversary, they enjoyed a surprise dinner where they were chauffeured in a white vintage car. They also celebrated with their neighbours at Homerose House with the Pompey Pluckers.
‘It’s just amazing and surprising,’ smiles Gloria.