A GENTLE nudge is the secret to a South Tyneside couple’s 60 years of wedded bliss.
Bob and Margaret Johnston are celebrating their diamond wedding anniversary today.
The octogenarians from Marsden in South Shields believe their years of happiness are down to ‘never arguing’.
Mr Johnston, 84, said: “I think we’ve lasted so long because we’ve never raised our voices to each other.
“And if one of us does go in a huff the other will be sure to give a nudge.
“We never go to sleep on an argument. That’s our motto, and it’s worked.”
The couple first met at the then Majestic Ball on the Pier Head in South Shields, when Mr Johnston was 24 and his future wife was 20.
He said: “I was a bombardier in the artillery and had just came back from the Far East.
“I’d gone to the dance with my sister, and spotted Margaret, so I asked if I could walk her home, after I’d walked my sister home of course.”
Romance blossomed and the pair were married at St Peter’s Church in Harton Village, South Shields, before they both moved in with Mr Johnston’s father in Ashgrove Avenue, Cleadon Park.
In 1954, they moved into their own house in Lincoln Road, and became parents to Bobby, who died in 2004, aged 50, Sandra, 56, David, 55, and Stephen 50.
Mrs Johnston worked at Price’s Factory in Laygate, while her husband, after being de-mobbed, became a bus driver.
They later moved back to Ashgrove Avenue, before having to be relocated to Grotto Road, due to the Cleadon Park redevelopment project, about eight years ago.
The grandparents-of-seven and great-grandparents-of-three are looking forward to spending their special day with family – and seeing their son David, who’s travelling from New Zealand.