Couple celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary

Jean and Bill Dale celebrated 60 years of marriage.

Jean and Bill Dale celebrated 60 years of marriage.

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A couple celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary said one of the secrets to a long and happy marriage was having a sense of humour.

Jean and Bill Dale marked the occasion at Eastbourne House, in Whitley Bay, with a special party involving family, residents and staff.

Bill, who moved to Whitley Bay at the age of 14, and Jean, who grew up in Redcar, met at Christmas 1955 while Bill was home on leave from the Merchant Navy, going to a dance at Redcar Rugby Club on Boxing Day.

Although they both agree it was not love at first sight, Bill proposed within four weeks.

The couple were married at Christ Church, in Redcar on March 23, 1957. Bill left the Merchant Navy after the birth of their first child and eventually joined the Probation Service in Stockton on Tees in 1966.

Jean and Bill lived in Hartburn, Stockton on Tees for 50 years until they came to Eastbourne House in August 2016.

They have three children, six grandchildren and two great grandsons.

The couple’s other tips for a happy marriage include “Being together is the most important thing” and “to be happy, despite the trials and tribulations, to carry on, as there is always a blue sky around the corner”.