Rugby couple dance their way to 60 years of marriage

Joan and Dennis Graham
Joan and Dennis Graham

Love blossomed at a country dance for diamond couple Joan and Dennis Graham.

They celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary with a family meal on Thursday.

The couple have lived in Bilton since 1966 having originally moved to Dunchurch in 1959.

They married at St Helen’s Church in Wheathamstead, Hertfordshire, four years after a chance meeting at a dance in Askham, in the Lake District, from where they both originally hailed.

And part of the celebration will be to raise funds for Bilton Silver Band, something very close to their hearts.

A ‘not so surprise’ party on Saturday for friends and family will help raise funds for the band which has nine members involved - three generations - plus Joan and Dennis who are trustees and vice presidents.

Both daughter Diane and son David play cornet with the band as do some of their four grandchildren, and four great grandchildren.

“It’s played a big part in our lives,” said Joan. “It always kept them busy and we have a lot to be grateful for. We still go to any concerts and sometimes to watch them practice on Mondays and Fridays.”

Dennis worked for Howard’s the butchers in Dunchurch then moved into security at Roots Group and GEC Rugby while Joan was a housewife before working at the at the Co-op.

As for their secret to a long and happy marriage they said: “Everything we are going to do we discuss together - it’s a joint decision.

“It’s about not thinking about yourself and thinking about one another.”