LOVE at first sight is not a romantic notion reserved only for films, but the basis of 50 years of happy marriage.
That is according to Margaret and Arthur Roper, from Swanfield in Long Melford, who celebrated their golden wedding.
The couple first met at a youth club, before getting together at a New Year’s Eve dance at Sudbury Town Hall in 1958.
“It was love at first sight,” said Margaret, 71. “I fancied him and he fancied me. It was as simple as that.”
The pair married in 1962 in Foxearth, where Margaret was born, before moving to Glemsford.
Arthur, now 73, joined the Army for two years as part of national service and then went on to spend most of his working life at Cubitt Theobald, while Margaret worked as a receptionist until she took up a position at watchmakers Knight and Gibbins in Sudbury.
“Whatever I did, it always had to fit around family life, as that was most important,” said Margaret.
The pair have two children, Carl, who lives in the same street, and Miranda, who lives in Great Cornard. They also have four grandchildren.
To mark five decades together, the couple enjoyed a family meal in their home village and Margaret said it was occasions like this which made life special.
“We are a family that celebrates at every little opportunity,” she said.
“There have been so many highlights through the years and it has all been memorable.”
Margaret added that her advice to any newly weds was never to go to bed on a row.
“That is what my mother told me and that has helped keep us together,” she said.
“We have lots of common interests and take any excuse for a party.”