Respect, understanding and a sense of humour: the keys to one Suffolk couple’s 60 year marriage

Mike and Leila Gardener are celebrating 60 years together. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Mike and Leila Gardener are celebrating 60 years together. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

A couple in Wickham Market are getting ready to celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary.

Mike and Leila Gardener are celebrating 60 years together. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Mike and Leila Gardener are celebrating 60 years together. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

Mike and Leila Gardener met in 1957 at a dance being held in their native Tunbridge Wells in Kent.

A year after they properly met, the pair were married.

Mike’s work in the aviation industry saw the couple move

Dubai and Aden in Yemen.

Mike and Leila Gardener are celebrating 60 years together. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Mike and Leila Gardener are celebrating 60 years together. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant


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Nine years ago the couple moved to Wickham Market after Mike retired.

“We have really fallen in love with Suffolk,” said Mike.

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As part of the celebrations the pair, who have three children, 5 grand children and three great grandchildren, received a congratulatory card from the Queen.

As well as celebrating their wedding anniversary the couple will also be marking Leila’s 80th birthday next month.

When asked what their secret to a happy marriage was Mike said:“Three things: respect, understanding and a sense of humour.”

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