Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 20°C

min temp: 13°C

Search

Gallery: You are never too old to fall in love - as this happy pair from Ipswich proved

PUBLISHED: 12:00 20 November 2012

Ipswich couple John Birkwood and Betty Roper get married at the age of 75 after meeting at Dunwich Court retirement Home

Ipswich couple John Birkwood and Betty Roper get married at the age of 75 after meeting at Dunwich Court retirement Home

Archant

THEY say you’re never too old to fall in love.

Fast Facts

Paul Walker, 88 and Ann Thayer, 87, of Maine, USA, married in November last year after 17 years of dating

In February this year, Dana Jackson married 87 year-old Bill Stauss in Kentucky

Rose Pollard, 90 married Forrest Lunsway on his 100th birthday last year - they had been together for 30 years

And, at the age of 75, Ipswich couple John and Betty Birkwood are proof of the saying after tying the knot in front of family and friends just a year after first meeting.

The loved-up pair’s story began last year when John, who was a captain in the army, moved into Dunwich Court, a sheltered housing complex in Waveney Road, and immediately spotted Betty at a weekly dance club.

He said: “Betty is a very good dancer and I was attracted to her straight away and I thought – I’m going to ask that girl out.

“We were face to face and I said ‘would you like to go to Felixstowe for a drive?’ And on that, hinged the rest of our lives.”

After their first date at the seaside the couple struck up an immediate bond and have embarked on a number of trips together – including one visit to Tavistock, in Devon, where Betty has family.

John added: “When I dropped her off at her niece’s, I was like a shy little boy being introduced to the relatives – I was nervous.”

The pair’s friendship was originally more for companionship – but within a few months their relationship blossomed.

John and Betty discussed getting married at length before finally deciding to take the plunge.

The wedding took place at the Whitehouse Baptist Church on Saturday, with members of John’s family coming from as far afield as the USA for the ceremony, which was followed by a reception at Dunwich Court.

Betty moved into Dunwich Court in 2008, three years after her husband died, while John, whose wife also died in 2008, moved to Dunwich Court from Scarborough last year.

John said: “Second love in the autumn of our years plus the warmth of good friends and neighbours around us – what more could we ask?”

Betty added: “We shall continue to live at Dunwich Court for the foreseeable future because it offers security and is a very happy place to live.”

The couple drove off for their honeymoon on Sunday and have spent a few days in Fontwell, near Chichester. They will also be visiting Chipshop – a small hamlet in Devon.

Barbara Bloomfield, Dunwich Court's scheme manager, said: “It is lovely to see two tenants so happy together.”

■ Have you got a heart-warming story to tell? Write to Star Newsdesk, Ipswich Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

The man arrested by police over a suspected murder in Bury St Edmunds on Thursday has been charged this evening.

Claydon High School has been recognised for its sporting prowess by achieving the School Games Mark silver award.

Two junctions on the A12 near Kelvedon in Essex will be closed for three nights this week as bridge repair works continue.

One of the biggest dates in Felixstowe’s summer calendar of events got off to a sun drenched start on the seaside this afternoon.

A baby born with a rare disease that causes such severe muscle weakness that even breathing, eating and swallowing become difficult for her has received support from a Suffolk charity.

Families in Ipswich needn’t have ventured far to hit the beach as a sandy retreat began its summer-long stint in Christchurch Park.

Thousands of people have headed to Jimmy’s Farm in Wherstead today for the first day of one of the biggest events on its calendar: Jimmy’s Festival.

A man accused of brandishing a fake gun in Ipswich has been detained to appear at crown court next month.

Regional housebuilder Persimmon Homes celebrates its apprenticeships programme.

Libraries face a challenging future under Brexit – but determined Suffolk communities will put up a fight to help them survive.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24