|Ealing's Diamond Couple|
Local residents celebrate 60 years together
Ealing resident (and Ealing Today forum regular) Roy Bartlett, had an extra special festive celebration this year.
He and wife Beryl, were congratulated by the Queen for reaching their 60th Diamond wedding anniversary.
The couple who live in Drayton Grove met in 1945 when Beryl joined the youth club set up by the then 15 year old Roy.
The club progressed to the highly respected and innovative local football club Viking Sports FC famed for its ground breaking overseas tours including the Soviet Union in 1965 and involvement in the Russian led invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968.
As a short term wartime evacuee Roy was subsequently injured by bomb blast in South Ealing during the 1940 'Blitz' but recovered sufficiently to serve almost 3 years with the R.A.F, all chronicled in his book 'A Little Boy's War' and featured in several TV programmes.
He was honoured in 2001 by placement on the New Years Day 'London Roll of Honour' for services to the community of Ealing.
Starting work at the age of 14 at the A.E.C Southall factory Roy became a manager in the fork lift truck industry before reverting to a role working with children in care, a vocation that Beryl had undertaken for many years to retirement.
Both now disabled, they are a familiar sight around West Ealing on their mobility scooters 'terrorising' the locals.
The couple have one son Gordon who has been manager of non-league football club Wealdstone for the past 20 years. They have 2 grandchildren - Amanda and Craig.
Roy and Beryl agree that they have led an interesting, rewarding and at times, exciting life together.
Roy says: ''In the aftermath of war things were austere, we had an outside loo, no central heating and our kitchen table was an upturned packing case. We bought a table when we could afford it on our meagre wages. We were born of a generation that if something did'nt work, we fixed it, not threw it away. That same philosophy applies to marriage.''
6th January 2014