Joy and Henry enjoy their diamond days
LOVE blossomed out of war for Bexhill diamond wedding couple Joy and Henry Griffiths, who celebrated 60 years of happy marriage yesterday. (Thursday, July 1)
For the pair first met when Joy was evacuated from her native Addiscombe, a suburb of Croydon, Surrey, to live with her great aunt in Herefordshire, away from the dangers of German air attacks and flying bombs.
There, in Moreton Eye, she became friends with local lad Henry as they went to school together. They fell in love and later married at St Mary's Church in Canning Road, Addiscombe, in the summer of 1950.
Henry, now 81, was a plumber and decorator, working initially for his father-in-law who had his own business in Surrey, before setting up in his own right, while Joy, 80, worked as a shop assistant.
Voluntary work with the British Red Cross led Joy to become a paid centre organiser, and by the time she and Henry retired she was running the charity's centre at Shirley, near Croydon.
The couple left Surrey in 1993 and moved to the Sussex coast to a house in Collington Lane East, Bexhill, which has been their home ever since. They have a son, Nigel, and a daughter, Anne Marie.
Henry said: "We both enjoy gardening... which is just as well as we have quite a big garden to look after."
Joy added: "The house needed quite a lot doing to it at first, but of course Henry's trade meant we were able to take that in our stride.
"We love living in Bexhill and it's been a wonderful place to retire to."
The couple plan to celebrate their special day with a family gathering at the nearby Cooden Beach Hotel, but have also treated themselves to a second honeymoon, staying in some style at the Grand Hotel, Eastbourne.
PICTURED: Joy and Henry Griffiths and (above) the couple on their wedding day