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Six Decades of Marriage for John and Mary Morris of Wetley Rocks

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: July 03, 2014

By Abbey Buxton

  • Above, John and Mary on their wedding day. Left, the as they are now.

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A couple who used to run a village shop are celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary.

John and Mary Morris, of Main Road, Wetley Rocks, first met at a garden party to raise funds for the Wetley Rocks Methodist Chapel youth club in 1949, where Mary was selling tickets on the door when she was 17 and John was 20.

Mary, whose maiden name is Titterton, said: "We knew each other anyway as our families were friends and I'd seen him at the youth club, but he'd never got round to speaking to me or asking me out before.

"Our first date was to Hanley Speedway and then he joined the methodist chapel, having originally been a member of St John's Church in Mill Lane, so we could see each other more.

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"We both continue to be members of the Methodist chapel, me since 1941 and John since 1949.

"John has done a lot for the chapel over the years and is a founder member of the Wetley Rocks Male Voice Choir."

The couple were engaged when Mary was 21 and married when she was 22 at Wetley Rocks Methodist Chapel, on July 3, 1954 – meaning they are now celebrating their Diamond anniversary.

The ceremony and reception went without a hitch, with only a slight hiccup beforehand.

Mary explained: "John had forgotten to pick up the wedding certificate before the weekend, and on the morning of the wedding he had to cycle all the way to Cheadle to get it, but he managed to make it back in time. We were the first of four couples to be married at the chapel that year, including my late brother William Titterton, and we are the only ones to have reached our diamond wedding anniversary."

The couple honeymooned in Torquay and went on to have three children Joy, Beryl and Donald. They are grandparents of five, great-grandparents of two and step great-grandparents of one.

Mary said that she and John have always got on very well throughout their 60 years of marriage, and have always been good friends as well as husband and wife.

She said: "I've never had a grey hair, but John's is white; he says it shows who the worrier is in our house. We've always got on very well and John is very understanding.

"We always counted our blessings and kept occupied, and if we had any problems they were always discussed and sorted out together.

"John is very caring and loving and we've always told each other everything; there are no secrets."

John and Mary started married life living in a house they had built in Cheadle Road, Wetley Rocks.

They later moved to Main Road, Wetley Rocks, where they ran a corner shop from 1972 until 1989.

Prior to that Mary worked as a clerk at Joshua Wardles before having their children and John worked at Brittains Paper Mill. Mary said that John always kept himself busy and was a very active member of the community with various groups including the Royal British Legion, the methodist chapel and male voice choir, of which he is an honorary member, as well as attending parish council meetings.

Unfortunately, he was taken ill in 2006 following a heart by-pass operation.

He is now being taken care of at Elizabeth House Nursing Home, where he has resided for the past 18 months.

The couple celebrated their 50th anniversary at The Travellers Rest in Stanley. This year, to celebrate the occasion, Mary's son is visiting from Ireland where he now lives and there will be a family get-together at the house.

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