Valentine’s Day: Romance isn’t dead in South Tyneside, say Shields folk

George Clooney.
George Clooney.

YOU don’t need to say it with flowers, chocolates or a candlelit dinner.

Love is, apparently, always in the air for romantic South Tynesiders, whatever the date.

Valentine’s Day is a chance for husbands, wives, partners and potential suitors to express their feelings, but many shoppers in King Street, South Shields, feel the day puts too much pressure on couples to splash out on their other halves.

Despite reservations about the commercial aspects of the occasion, they agree that loved ones should be cherished.

Cecilia Ross, 65, says romance is still burning bright with her husband of 45 years, Alan.

The pensioner, of Marsden, South Shields, said: “I would say that my ideal Valentine is my husband Alan. We have been married for 45 years, but if he hadn’t got me a card, there would be some ructions.

“He still makes the effort after all those years.

“We will be celebrating Valentine’s Day with a quiet night-in with a Chinese meal.”

John Neilson, 52, of South Shields, feels Valentine’s Day is another landmark day putting undue pressure on cash-strapped folk to fork out.

He said: “I think it is too commercial. People don’t have the money to be spending, not only on Valentine’s Day, but also at Easter and other holidays like that.

“It is just another way for shops to get more money off people.”

Despite his criticism of the February 14 hype, he isn’t jilting the event completely.

Mr Nielsen added: “I probably will take my wife out for a meal tonight.”

Husband-and-wife John and Cathy Harman say they won’t be showering each other with gifts today – but they are still each other’s perfect match after decades together.

John, 69, said: “I think Valentine’s Day is more for the younger people now, but we will possibly go out for a meal.

“We have been married for 35 years.

“She is still definitely my ideal Valentine.”

Wife Cathy, 63, added: “I do think Valentine’s Day is a bit too commercial.

“John is still my ideal Valentine too. We will be having a quiet meal.”

Angus and Christine McDonald say you don’t need a special day to celebrate your love as any date is an opportunity to toast your happiness with the special person in your life.

Angus, 66, of South Shields, said: “I think you either do Valentine’s Day and really get into it, or you don’t.

“You don’t need a particular date to show you love each other. It doesn’t matter if it is February 14 or February 18 or any other date.

“Christine is still my perfect Valentine, without a shadow of a doubt.”

Christine, 63, added: “I think it is more for the teenagers.

“I do think people are under a lot of pressure to spend money. It’s not just a bunch of flowers any more.

“But Angus is still my ideal Valentine. We have been married for 45 years.

“It is a day for the teenagers.”