Northampton couple who married during World War Two celebrate 79 years of matrimony

Not many people can boast that they have celebrated their 79th wedding anniversary but that is exactly what one Northampton couple have done one year away from their oak milestone.

Tuesday, 31st December 2019, 12:41 pm
Updated Tuesday, 31st December 2019, 1:05 pm
George and Mary Loake

George and Mary Loake, whose combined age is 202, celebrated being married for almost 80 years on Boxing Day.

The couple met on the so-called Bunny Run in the 1930s, the name given to Abington Street during the couple's courting days when it was a popular meeting place for young lovers.

The pair, who now live together at Abington Park View care home, were married in 1940 during the Second World War where George, who is now 102 years old, was stationed on the Isle of Man where he was in the RAF ground crew.

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The day before the wedding, he got as far as Crewe when there was an air raid. He became stuck at Crewe train station and nearly did not make it back in time for the wedding but luck was on his side and they tied the knot at All Saints Church before their reception in Newlands.

The pair have both lived in Northampton throughout their lives and had their very own bungalow built after the war in St James area.

They were still living in the same home until two years ago before the decision was made for them both to live together in a care home as Mary has dementia.

Mary was born into a large family of seven children before she spent her working life in the boot and shoe trade at Lotus Shoes where she was a forewoman for her department.

After his time in service, George returned to civvy street where he took up work in the leather industry as a colour matcher at Pearce & Co and Barker Shoes.

Their niece, Jackie Osborn, said: "They are really lovely, caring people. Auntie was always very proper and she's always been the Queen of the family, and anyone who meets my uncle George says they love him.

"We have always held them in such high regard.

"Mary has always said 'he would never argue with me, no matter how much I would try' and we believe this is what made their marriage last so long. We feel it’s an incredible achievement to be married 79 years."