Missed bus was couple's route to love

SITTING next to a stranger on a bus was an odd place for Esther Twitchett to find love.

Dave Gooderham

SITTING next to a stranger on a bus was an odd place for Esther Twitchett to find love.

The chance meeting was made all the more peculiar because her future husband, John Burmingham , had missed his usual route and only got on board because his instincts told him to.

But 14 months after the random exchange on the bus in Sudbury, the couple were married and reflecting on how fate played a part in them finding love.

Esther said: “The whole thing is very strange and hard to explain. I just met John on the bus and I think we both just thought the same thing pretty much straight away. It is a lovely story and we had a beautiful wedding, but I guess why and how we met was just one of those things.”

The notion that the couple were destined to meet was made even more likely when John, 74, decided to ignore his usual bus and get on at a later one. He then met his future wife who was on her way home from working as a volunteer at the St Nicholas shop in Sudbury.

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Esther, 76, explained: “There wasn't any room for me and my trolley at the front of the bus, so I went and sat beside John and we got chatting.

“I remember when I got off in Bures, I thought 'he was nice but I don't suppose I will ever see him again'. Then the following week he was there (on the bus) and we got talking and our relationship went from there.

“There was no particular reason why he didn't get on the earlier bus, he just told me there was something in his head. He said that something inside told him to get off the bus at Sudbury and catch the later one. I suppose to be truthful I knew almost at once that he was someone special.”

The couple, who are both widows and will live in Wivenhoe, Essex, were married at St Mary's Church, Bures, where Esther had lived for more than 50 years. Instead of traditional gifts, the married couple asked for money which was then donated between St Nicholas Hospice and Ferriers Barn centre for disabled people in Bures.