A SOUTHAMPTON couple who married in 1946 celebrate their platinum anniversary this month.

Anne and Ron Hawkins met at a dance at Shedfield Lodge in 1945 where Ron was convalescing having been discharged from the army with a shrapnel wound to the heel after serving in North Africa, Sicily and Italy.

Anne was doing ‘essential works’ in the Fareham laundry.

They got married the following year on May 18 at St Peter’s and St Paul’s Church in Fareham.

They had no wedding cake, photos or party, but went to south Wales for a week’s honeymoon.

After getting married Ron, 93, went on to train as a carpenter and joiner in Redbridge, before taking a job as caretaker at Bellemoore School and Shirley First School where he worked until 1988.

The couple brought their two children, Len (an adopted nephew) and Derek up in Shirley, where they still live, and have two grand children and five great grandchildren.

Ron said: “We were brought up in poverty – I remember putting cardboard in my shoes to go to school because they were worn through.

"But having full employment straight after the war was brilliant, we had a bit of money to spend and it held us together.”

Anne, 89, who suffers from osteoporosis, said: “We’ve come through very tough times, sad times and happy periods.

"You have to work at it - it’s not a bed of roses.

"You’ve got to be there for each other and of course be faithful.”