Our first guest blog of the year comes from Peninsula Care Homes Business Manager, Dianne Gregory, who met with Cornerways resident couple celebrating their 71st Wedding Anniversary. Dianne shares her blog with us:
We were privileged at Cornerways recently to share in the celebrations of residents John and Cicely Balson who boast 71 years of marriage! After a bit of research I was unable to find the recognised symbol of 71 years, with 60 years being an expensive Diamond and 70 years being more expensive Platinum, I decided that 71 years must just be put down to ‘true love’
I met with both John and Cicely to find out a bit more…
John, originally from Bristol commenced in the army as a mechanical engineer but after a serious accident and with severe burns to his legs he was hospitalised for a year and asked to leave the army. Sheer determination from his mother pleading with the army to take him back enabled John to continue his career.
Cicely formerly from Scartho, Grimsby also joined the army as a shorthand typist.
They first met at Buntingford Barracks, Hertfordshire. John was 20 years old and Cicely 19 years, they were married in December 1945 in Cicelys local church in Scartho, a reception followed at the parish hall. As the war had only recently ended, food remained rationed but Cicelys mother produced a beautiful spread for all 100 guests.
With both John and Cicely in the army they were fortunate to travel to many Countries including Korea, Hong Kong, Malta and Germany to name a few.
They have a son, Mervyn and daughter, Patricia, four grandchildren and two great grandchildren.
They moved to Paignton following retirement and to be nearer to their son.
They are quite rightly proud of all the service medals they have received and remember fondly meeting members of the Royal Family.
I asked the secret of a long and happy marriage, and Cicely said “we’ve always helped each other and never rowed” John smiled in agreement… She went on to say, that they always worked hard, and she would often do additional shorthand work in the evenings, she said they both had a very good work ethic.