‘It’s important to laugh together’ - South Shield couple share secrets of a happy marriage 60 years on
A South Tyneside couple have celebrated a lifetime of happiness together on their Diamond Wedding Anniversary.
Ruth and Kenneth James Baxter, from Bamburgh Avenue, South Shields, marked 60 years of marriage on Thursday, February 21.
Ruth, 80, and Kenneth, 82, met as teenagers at the weekly Co-op Youth Club in the town.
The pair later went on their first date - meeting on the popular spot known as Marrs Corner before going on to the cinema.
They went on to marry at St Michael’s Church in South Shields on February 21, 1959.
Kenneth worked as an engineer with the Merchant Navy for 40 years, while Ruth was a full-time mum.
The couple say family is the most important thing to them and have sons David, 59, Keith, 58, Michael, 56, and John 53.
They have five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Ruth said: “We fist met at a youth club called the co-op in South Shields.
“We used to go every week but didn’t bother with each other for a while, but then we just went out on a date.
“We met at Marrs Corner as everybody met there back then and then went to the pictures.
“We later got married and I had my eldest son David 11 months after.
“Keith worked at sea as an engineer in the Merchant Navy and I looked after the boys, as you did back then.
“With Ken going ways to see we had holidays when he came home to the likes of Allendale and Hexham.
“But as the boys got older we did go away together.”
Over the years the pairs also enjoyed ballroom dancing and say church had been a big part of their lives.
The pair still attend St Michael’s Church in South Shields where they got married and received a special mention in a service at the church last week in recognition of their special anniversary.
On their secret to a long and happy marriage, Ruth said: “We have had our ups and downs but we just forget it.
“We have a laugh together and family is really important.”