Ilkeston couple mark 70 years together

John and Olive Hampton of Little Hallam Lane, who are about to celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary.
John and Olive Hampton of Little Hallam Lane, who are about to celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary.

An Ilkeston couple will celebrate 70 years of marriage on Sunday.

John and Olive Hampton will celebrate their platinum wedding anniversary after meeting at the age of 14.

The couple married in 1945 at the age of 20, at St John’s Church, on Nottingham Road in Ilkeston.

John was on a week’s leave from serving in the Royal Engineers during the war and they married at 9.30am after walking to the church.

Olive said: “Due to the quick decision to marry there were only two others at the wedding, one of my brothers and one of my sisters as well as the vicar.”

John’s dad did not approve of the marriage because war was still raging and he thought they should wait. John served in France and Germany after going over to the beaches of Normandy on the sixth day of the D-Day landings.

After the wedding, John took Olive to his mother’s for bacon and eggs. Following the wedding breakfast his mum asked him if he would mind getting two loads of coal in off the street – one for her and one at his brothers who was at work at Stanton. John changed his shirt and got stuck in. Afterwards, in the afternoon they went to the Ritz Cinema together.

“It’s a far cry from the lavish weddings that take place today. But those were different times,” said Olive, who is looking forward to her granddaughter’s wedding later this year.

The couple, both aged 90, are from Ilkeston and are lifelong residents of the area.

They said the secret to their long and happy marriage is ‘a positive outlook and teamwork’. Olive said: “I do the work and John makes up the team, but it’s the laughter and the companionship that keeps us going.”

They will be celebrating their wedding anniversary with family and hope to go to the seaside for a paddle later in the year.