Couple finally marry - 40 years on

A COUPLE who tied the knot earlier this month had been waiting longer than most for their special day.Joe Cross and Beverley Chapman finally married at St Thomas' Church in the Essex village of Bradwell-on-Sea, 40 years after they split up and lost touch.

A COUPLE who tied the knot earlier this month had been waiting longer than most for their special day.

Joe Cross and Beverley Chapman finally married at St Thomas' Church in the Essex village of Bradwell-on-Sea, 40 years after they split up and lost touch.

Mr Chapman, 69 next week, said the couple had been neighbours in Parsonage Lane, Tendring, in the 1960s.

They got to know each other and began dating - but broke up after Beverley's mother objected to their marriage plans.


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The pair went their separate ways and married other people, with both relationships ending in failure, but their paths crossed again four decades on when Beverley served Mr Chapman in a garage where she was working.

“They always say you never forget your first love - and they're right,” said the new Mrs Chapman, 58.

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She said that after losing touch, they both married new partners in 1967 and incredibly also both had children two years later.

Beverley moved to Burnham on Crouch and Mr Chapman to Althorne, less than three miles away, yet they failed to see each other for decades.

After their relationships ended for different reasons, they had their chance meeting in the garage which was followed by Beverley's discovery that she worked with one of Joe's daughters, whom she asked to pass on her telephone number.

She said: “She took it home and gave it to Joe. He called and we met up that night.That was three years ago - I knew straight away I would love to go back out with him, but I didn't think he would be keen on a relationship, but he was - he was as keen as me.”

She said it was clear to one another that it was as though they had never been apart and that they had “gone right back” to the way they once were.

The couple decided to get married at long last and on May 5, in front of many members of their respective families, they did just that.

Mr Chapman said: “It was a lovely day, they all got on so well and it worked out really great. We think we're lucky to have a second chance.”

Beverley's elderly father Christopher Marjoram, 83, was even able to walk his daughter down the aisle this time - he missed her first wedding after the best man forgot to pick him up.

elliot.furniss@eadt.co.uk

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