Blind date a golden opportunity

BLIND dates can work and Woodbridge mayor, Les Binns and his wife Sylvia, are the real proof of the pudding.After being set up by their friends around 52 years ago, the couple are now celebrating their Golden Wedding anniversary.

By Jessica Nicholls

BLIND dates can work and Woodbridge mayor, Les Binns and his wife Sylvia, are the real proof of the pudding.

After being set up by their friends around 52 years ago, the couple are now celebrating their Golden Wedding anniversary.

According to Sylvia, 69, the pair just clicked when they met on a blind date at the cinema and there was no looking back.

Just three months after their first encounter Les, now 71, proposed and 18 months later they were married on April 12.

When they met, Les was a nurse in the Royal Navy and stationed in Gosport, Hampshire where Sylvia was living.

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She said: "I knew one of his friend's wives and she thought he would be someone I would like.

"We met up at the cinema and he had his uniform on – he looked really smashing in it.

"He told me that he liked my ankles!

"When he proposed three months later he said he had made his mind up straight away that he wanted to marry me."

The couple moved back to Les's home city of Hull when work began to dry up in the south of the country.

When he left the Navy, he retook all his nursing qualifications and worked within what is now the National Health Service.

Sylvia worked as a matron in a children's home, looking after ten children in care.

Eventually the couple had their own children, Stephen and Mark, and now have three grandchildren and another one on the way this year.

The pair moved to Suffolk in 1972 and lived in the grounds of Foxhall Hospital, where Les became director of nursing, before they moved to Woodbridge in 1980.

Les is extremely involved in the community and was a magistrate for 23 years.

So what has kept them together all these years? Sylvia said: "We respect each others views and share the ups and downs together.

"Being together you have a closeness that you don't have when you first get married, it is just something that grows.

"We both feel very fortunate and we have had a wonderful year as mayor and mayoress."

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