‘It’s all about give and take’ says Northampton diamond duo celebrating 60 years of married life

Maureen and Alan Panter celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary with a surprise dinner at the Five Bells in BugBrooke.
Maureen and Alan Panter celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary with a surprise dinner at the Five Bells in BugBrooke.

A couple of golf loving great grandparents from Northampton were given a diamond wedding anniversary to remember when their family held a surprise bash.

Alan and Maureen Panter of Jubilee close, Briar Hill reached the milestone year on March 12 and on the day the great-granparents of six, who also have 11 grandchildren, two sons and a daughter, thought they were going to go out for a meal with close family.

But when they arrived at the Five Bells, in Church Lane, Bugbrooke, a party of family and friends were there to greet them.

It was funny because they were all saying how ‘we know you don’t like a fuss’,” Alan said. “But then of course when we got there, all these people were there. “There must have been at least 50 or 60 coursing, family, golfing friends.”

Maureen first asked Alan for a dance at the Exeter dance hall in Northampton in the early 1950s after they had both ‘exchanged a few looks’, Alan said.

They married in 1955 at Dallington church, but Alan was soon called to national service in the Korean War.

Alan, when he returned, went on to work most of his life in the electrical wholesale business.

Maureen, after raising their three children, Beverley, Nick and Mark, went on to work as a secretary at Elm’s Dental Surgery, near Northampton general Hospital, for a number of years.

Both of them had long careers, working until they were 76, Alan said.

But the couple’s shared passion over the years has been playing golf.

Both of them have been Northampton Golf Club in Harlestone and Alan, who still plays, had a handicap in the single figures at his peak.

Maureen became captain of the women’s team there in 1985.

After 60 years of marriage, Alan says the time has flown by.

“It’s all about give and take,” he said. “I would love to say we have never had a cross word, but who can?

“It’s amazing how quickly the time has gone.”