Dunstable love birds share love story after 73 years of marriage

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Thorn Springs care home residents, John and Joyce Halls, have been sharing their story this Valentine’s Day after 73 years of happy marriage.

John and Joyce met when they were 16 and 15-years-old while they were out with their friends, but it wasn’t until John took Joyce’s friend on a date that he realised Joyce was actually the one for him. John said,

‘After we started courting, we saw each other every single day until I left to join the army at 18-years-old. Even then, we wrote to each other every day.’

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Joyce added, ‘My mum was always very fond of John, he was the apple of her eye! She would tell me not to mess him about because she knew he was a keeper.’

John and JoyceJohn and Joyce
John and Joyce

When John returned from his service, he knew that he wanted to propose to Joyce immediately, but he wanted her to choose the ring. The couple visited a jeweller in Tottenham, where Joyce found the perfect ring for £29 and ten shillings.

Joyce said, ‘On our wedding day, I had six bridesmaids who I made lavender dresses for, my favourite colour. My dress was handmade by a lady my mum knew; it was white and made from quite a thick material with a long veil.

‘Our reception was held in a barn at the bottom of my mum’s garden, where everyone was served ham, mash and salad. We were still very much on rations then, but we partied the night away!’

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John added, ‘My favourite memory from our wedding day was sitting in the car having our pictures taken and realising that we were now husband and wife.

‘Our friends have always said we’re joined at the hip, but the best advice I can give for a long and happy marriage is to never go to bed on an argument and to always be the first to apologise!’

This Valentine’s Day, John and Joyce will be spending the day together at Thorn Springs care home in Houghton Regis.

Katie Hughes, the Home Manager at Thorn Springs, said, ‘Every day, John and Joyce give each other love, compassion and time which is an inspiration to us all.

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‘It’s a privilege to have been able to share their special memories with them – it was the perfect way to spend Valentine’s Day!’

To find out more about living at Thorn Springs, call 01582 218560 or email [email protected].

Thorn Springs is a luxury residential and dementia care home operated by Ideal Carehomes, rated 9.9 out of 10 on care home review website,

With 66 en-suite bedrooms and attractive décor, Thorn Springs is proud to offer person-centred care in a dignified manner, promoting independence as far as possible.

Thorn Springs offers an all-inclusive fee to give peace of mind to residents and their loved ones.