'Inseparable' Suffolk couple celebrate 73rd wedding anniversary

Tom and Margaret

"Inseparable" Tom and Margaret. - Credit: Care UK

An "inseparable" couple from Bury St Edmunds have been celebrating more than 70 years of marriage.

Ninety-four-year-old Margaret and 93-year-old Tom Shipley celebrated their 73rd wedding anniversary at Care UK's Glastonbury Court, on Glastonbury Road, where they live together.

The Shipley's met when they were 14 years old while they both attended the choir at Spring Mill Walk Chapel.

A few years later Tom began painting the lines at the local tennis club, while Margaret served afternoon tea, which gave them both a free membership which they used to spend time together.

Tom and Margaret on their wedding day

Tom and Margaret on their wedding day - Credit: Care UK

At 17, Tom joined the Royal Air Force, where he served for four years while continuing to write to Margaret. They got married when he returned in March 1949, going on to have three children, Ian, Ann and Katherine.

Tom said: “I was never sure why Margaret liked me – I was such a sulky teenager, and she was so bubbly and chatty!

“The secret to a long marriage is not to fight over money. Our money has always been ours, not mine or Margaret’s individually. We just blended as a team.”

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To mark the occasion Glastonbury Court's head chef prepared a surprise romantic meal for the couple in the home's dining room, which had been decorated for the occasion.

Pictures of the couple were showcased, and they were joined by their daughter Ann for their favourite meal, fish and chips.

Customer relations manager at Glastonbury Court, Chantal Sencier said: “Here at Glastonbury Court, we regularly celebrate big anniversaries and understand the importance of maintaining relationships and celebrating life’s milestones. We were honoured to be a part of such a special moment for Margaret and Tom.

"They are truly inseparable, and we can all learn a thing or two from their long-lasting marriage. 

“Marking such a special occasion at the home allowed many of the residents to reminisce and share fond memories of their own wedding days – it was lovely to hear their stories too. Happy anniversary Margaret and Tom!”