Golden wedding couple stick together through sickness and health

Thomas and Emily Sowerby toast their 50th anniversary.
Thomas and Emily Sowerby toast their 50th anniversary.

The marriage pledge to stay together ‘in sickness and in health’ rings so true for cancer survivor Emily Sowerby as she celebrates her golden wedding.

She says Thomas, her husband of 50 years, “was my brick” when she was diagnosed with breast cancer seven years ago.

Emily and Thomas Sowerby's wedding day, as covered by the Gazette.

Emily and Thomas Sowerby's wedding day, as covered by the Gazette.

The marriage has gone in a flash for the couple captured on camera by a Gazette photographer on their wedding day – and again to mark their golden day.

One of our snappers was on hand back in 1965 when Emily and Thomas tied the knot at St Peter’s Church in South Shields.

And to mark their golden day, the Gazette called to the couple’s home in Bamford walk, South Shields, to capture them toasting 50 glorious years.

The intervening time has seen them raise two daughters and a son, and they are now proud grandparents to seven and great-grandparents to one.

Tom was my rock

Emily Sowerby

The family clan will gather this weekend at Buzzers bar in Victoria Road, South Shields, for a celebration bash.

It’s a long time from the day almost 55 years ago when the then-teenagers were introduced by friends on a Horsley Hill street.

At the time, 15-year-old Emily was working as a telephonist at the former Smiths furniture shop in James Mather Street, South Shields, while Thomas, just over a year older, worked at Swan Hunter in Wallsend as an apprentice shipwright.

Emily, who turns 69 tomorrow, said: “We got on straight away after we met. We have had a happy marriage, a few ups and downs, but who doesn’t?

“I remember the Gazette photographer coming to take our photograph on our wedding day – I have to say that I was slightly slimmer then!

“Tom was there for me when I was diagnosed with breast cancer. He was my brick and he really helped me to get through it. Thankfully, I was given the all-clear two years ago.”

Thomas, 70, added: “It’s been a good marriage and we have been happy all the time since we met back in 1960.

“I’m pretty sure it was love at first sight.”