28th October 2020

When support worker Paula Kearley discovered that her client Ray and his wife Joan were approaching their 60th wedding anniversary, she bought them flowers and a card but wanted to do more to make the day special.

The church in which the couple were married in Bulford is only open on Sundays, so Paula asked for it to be unlocked during the week so she could take them there to celebrate. 

Ray and Joan were overwhelmed to be back at St Leonard's and to hear a prayer being read out that had been specially written for them. Paula said: "They were both so touched and grateful and Joan said I was sent to them from God above."

Afterwards they paid a very emotional visit to the graves of Joan’s parents before heading home for a slap-up feast, which the couple's son Andrew joined as an extra surprise.

The power of forever

Paula said: “Just looking at Ray and Joan made me believe in the power of forever. They know exactly what it means to grow older together. I asked them what their secret to a happy marriage is. Joan said that it’s perseverance and tolerance and never to give up on each other, while Ray said it’s to always listen to your wife!

"It was just a perfect day and I felt so privileged to be a part of this wonderful celebration. I absolutely love my job and this is the exact reason why I do what I do.”