The platinum wedding anniversary of Jim and Gladys Till

A COUPLE who have known each other since they were small children have celebrated 70 years of wedded bliss.

Jim and Gladys Till first met when they were five and seven, married 20 years later and this week toasted their platinum anniversary.

The great grandparents, of Broadacre, Caton, met in the picturesque village and have remained there ever since.

Gladys, 91, said: "We have always lived in Caton and we went to the same school – Brookhouse.

"We have known each other almost all our lives and we have been together on and off since we were about 16. After school we went to work at 14 and then we lived together in the middle of Caton. Jim was good at sport. He played for Caton for 24 years at football.

"I used to go to watch the matches and the family did too. Then Jim used to come to the house and ask to see me."

Sport-mad Jim, 93, who worked on his family's farm in Caton, then asked for Gladys's hand in marriage. They married on January 1, 1938 in Caton – but had to slightly delay their honeymoon getaway.

Gladys added: "We did not go on a honeymoon because I had to go back to work and he had to go back on the farm so we went to the Isle of Man in August." Gladys, and Jim – who now suffers from short-term memory loss – have two children: Catherine, 62; and Graham, 63 – and are the proud grandparents of three and also have two great grandchildren.

And the key to happy married life is keep your independence and enjoy retirement, according to Gladys.

"It is best to keep your own interests when you get married," she said.

"I think you need to give and take, have healthy home-made food and plenty of fresh air and exercise.

"We did not start going away until we were 65 but now we have been to Australia because my sister lives there.

"We went there for three months and then another six weeks and then we started going to Europe."