Golden wedding joy for couple despite coronavirus sinking celebration plans
PUBLISHED: 11:30 03 April 2020
The family of an Ipswich couple celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary are refusing to let the coronavirus take the shine off their golden celebration.
Bob, aged 71, and 70-year-old Pat were due to go on a special cruise on the Queen Mary in May and another longer cruise in August, but both have had to be scrapped because of the pandemic lockdown.
Their daughter Lacey said: “As a large family we were planning on throwing a surprise party for their anniversary, but with the viral outbreak this has had to be postponed.
“It’s such a shame as we really wanted to do something special but we will just have to wait until this is all over now.
“But we thought we would try and get something in the paper as they are a well-known couple and a lot of people they have known and worked with down the years would like to wish them congratulations.”
Bob and Pat, who live in Rushmere St Andrew, were the children of Irish parents who moved to Ipswich in the post-war years.
Pat grew up in Renfrew Road and first met Bob when she was a teenager and his family moved in nearby.
You may also want to watch:
They soon started dating but after a year Bob’s family decided to move to Holland. However Bob, while still only a teenager, decided he was staying in Ipswich and lodged with a neighbour to be near Pat.
They married on April 4, 1970, at the old St Mary’s church in Ipswich and went on to have eight children, 20 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Bob was an electrician who went on to become one of Suffolk’s longest serving firefighters, spending more than 40 years with Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service.
Pat will be a familiar face to hundreds of former pupils at St Alban’s Catholic High School in Ipswich where she has worked for more than 35 years firstly as a lunch supervisor and later as a receptionist.
Lacey said: “As adults with our own children, when we’ve asked mum how she coped having eight children she would smile and say ‘Well dear we just got on with it. I’d have had more if I could’.
“They are well known for always being together. In 50 years they have spent only rare occasions apart when one or the other has had short hospital stays. Today they still remain inseparable and do everything together.”
Read all of our coronavirus coverage here.
If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Ipswich Star. Click the link in the yellow box below for details.