Thetford couple Wallace and Pearl Catchpole celebrate milestone anniversary and birthday
- Credit: Sonya Duncan
A Thetford couple who knew each other at school are celebrating two milestones.
Wallace and Pearl Catchpole both attended the Norwich Road School and started a relationship following a school dance when Mrs Catchpole was 15 and Mr Catchpole was 16.
The pair spent three years engaged before they tied the knot on February 15 1958 at St Mary’s Church in the town.
In addition to marking their Diamond anniversary the pair will also celebrate Mrs Catchpole’s 80th birthday two days later.
“I knew Pearl before she left school,” said the 80-year-old. “I used to do a milk round around her road and I was really shy when I used to see her coming out of her gate.”
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After the school dance the couple continued to go to dances at St John’s Hall, now the School Lane Doctor’s Surgery.
“We went out for several years and I popped the question and she said yes,” added Mr Catchpole.
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Mr Catchpole said he feels fortunate he can mark the occasions with his wife.
She suffered a stroke at a bingo hall in Bury St Edmunds in 2014.
The Norwich City and Liverpool football fan said: “I am lucky to have her here.
“It really upset me and people were calling when it happened and I could only cry down the phone.
“It makes you realise how important someone is to you. We don’t see eye to eye all the time but we get over it. Perhaps we don’t speak to each other but we come around.”
Mrs Catchpole, who worked for a home help service and as a cleaner, has since recovered and said she is looking forward to celebrating both milestones.
“I do not know what I would do without him,” she said. “We have had our ups and downs. You just work for it.”
Mr Catchpole added: “It is an achievement really. And so is reaching the age of 80. She has been a good wife to me. You get to understand each other I think.”
The couple have a son and daughter, David and Debra, six grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
To mark the two milestones Mr and Mrs Catchpole will be holding a celebration on February 18 at Thetford Town Football Club. The party will be attended by family and friends.
The couple also enjoy going away on holiday and said they hope to do so later this year.