Thetford wedding celebration with a difference

It was the year John F Kennedy was inaugurated as President of the United States, Breakfast at Tiffany’s hit the cinemas and satirical magazine Private Eye was published for the first time.

Closer to home, 1961 was also the year Sue and Russ Webber were married at Thorpe Road Methodist Church in Norwich.

Fast forward to 2011, and rather than accept gifts the couple have chosen to celebrate their golden anniversary by raising �1,500 for cancer research with a special evening for 120 of their closest family and friends.

Mr and Mrs Webber, of Monksgate, Thetford are busy planning next month’s event at Thetford Methodist Church which will include readings from the couple’s old love letters, a video of some of the wedding day which was originally filmed on an old cine camera, a choir, band and the original vows read out in church back in 1961.

Mrs Webber, 71, a part-time maths and French teacher at Thetford Grammar School, said cancer research was important to her and her husband.

“We’ve had so many people we know affected by this we think anything we can do we should do, plus we don’t need things, when you get to our age you have everything you need,” she said. “We’re got a wonderful team helping is with this. The band is getting together for a rehearsal and the choir is very busy and my daughter, who’s a music teacher has composed a song especially for the occasion which is very exciting. We will say a bit about our lives and how we’ve managed to struggle through 50 years together, which is quite a feat, I can tell you.”

Mr and Mrs Webber, who have two daughters, Sarah and Ruth, initially became friends through a mutual aquaintance in Norwich, where they both lived, and began to write to one other.

Most Read

After five years they married and began their new life in a two-bedroom bungalow in Horsham St Faiths, which they bought for �1,700.

Mr Webber’s job with the gas board kept the couple moving however and they then set up home in Wymondham followed by Barnham, near Thetford.

Eleven-years-ago they moved to Thetford proper where Mrs Webber continues to teach and her husband, 78, teaches older people to use computers in his spare time and runs a small framing business.

“I think a good relationship has its ups and downs,” Mrs Webber said. “If people tell me they never have an argument I don’t think they have a very vibrant relationship. “People are bound to ask how we managed 50 years and I think you find out what you can do to make each other happy and share that with other people outside your twosome.”

The couple are no stranger to raising money for charity and for Mrs Webber’s 70th boirthday donated �1.350 towards cancer research.

If anybody would like to donate towards the latest cause they can email Mr and Mrs Webber at