Diamond couple from Ancaster have travelled on a special 60-year journey together

Winnie and Dave Blankley celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary.
Winnie and Dave Blankley celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary.
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A couple who have lived all their married life in Ancaster celebrated their diamond wedding anniversary yesterday (Thursday).

Dave and Winnie Blankley met in 1953 at RAF Cranwell where Winnie was working as a nanny and Dave was doing work as a joiner. He did some work at the house where Winnie lived and their relationship blossomed from there.

Winnie and Dave Blankley on their wedding day in 1956.

Winnie and Dave Blankley on their wedding day in 1956.

The couple were married in St Kyneburgha Church in Castor, near Peterborough, where Winnie comes from, and enjoyed a honeymoon in Bournemouth. Dave says he paid £7, more than a week’s wages in those days, to pay for a party of 30 to go on a bus from Ancaster to the wedding.

Dave, 85, has lived all his life in Ancaster and enjoyed a long career as a joiner, working in many places around the region.

He said: “I have travelled all over the place and worked on many building sites. I have done a lot of roofing in the village and at Cranwell camp. I really enjoyed it. I love being outside in the fresh air. It was lovely.”

Before getting married, Winnie, 82, became a nursing assistant at Rauceby Hospital and later became a home help, caring for the elderly, mainly in Ancaster, for 21 years before retirement.

The only travelling we do these days is to the doctors for our survival pills!

Dave Blankley

The couple have two sons, Malcolm and Mark, and a daughter, Margaret.

They have five grandchildren, five great-grandchildren, two step-grandchildren and two great-step-grandchildren.

For many years, Dave and Winnie were members of local indoor and outdoor bowls clubs, including Grantham and Sleaford. Dave also played darts. Winnie was a member of Ancaster WI.

The couple have also enjoyed travel over the years and were members of Grantham Twinning Club, visiting Germany every year for over 20 years. Dave said: “The only travelling we do these days is to the doctors for our survival pills!”

The couple celebrated their anniversary on Saturday with family at the Eden House Hotel in Grantham. On Sunday, they will see more family for tea and cakes.

The couple say they like to live life to the full.

Dave said: “ We have always gone 50/50 and shared life to the full.

“We have led very active lives and gone on many bus outings and holidays.”

Winnie added: “I have enjoyed a long and happy mariage and we have a big family who we like to see.”