Happy couple celebrate 60 years of wedded bliss
A diamond couple with more than six decades of happy memories together have celebrated a major milestone.
Eileen, 83, and John Hopper, 85, marked 60 years of wedded bliss with a family party.
The couple, from Easington Village, met at Sunderland’s Rink Ballroom in 1956 and married at St Barnabas Church on April 12, 1958.
They started married life in Peterlee before moving to be near John’s family in Easington Village in 1963.
They have three children, three grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, and many of them were at the diamond wedding anniversary party held in their honour at Seaton Holme.
Eileen has paid tribute for her husband for the support he has given her over the years.
She has been involved with various groups, and was a parish councillor for 34 years.
Eileen said: “I have been involved in various commitments over the years, and could not do what I do without John’s background work.
“He is always there to help in everything I am involved with, from driving her to events to finding out information, delivering leaflets and the many other jobs entailed.
“People get two the price of one!”
Through their children Ian, Keith and Ann, the couple became involved in various activities, including running a youth club for over 10 years for Easington Community Association.
Eileen ran a Save the Children children’s group and became involved in the Easington Village Residents’ Association, and was secretary for their village fair.
When the Easington Village Parish Council was formed, she became a councillor for 34 years and served as chairman.
The parish council bought Seaton Holme as their headquarters and she has been very involved with events in the building.
Eileen was interested in local and family history eventually went on to write three books on the history of Easington and Seaton Holme.
She finished her working life working at Vaux Breweries offices, in Sunderland.
John served for five years in the RAF before his marriage, and later worked for Expanded Metal, in Hartlepool.
When John was younger he played cricket for Easington Colliery and his interests are gardening, walking his dogs, reading, horse racing and following Sunderland AFC.
Instead of asking for anniversary presents, Eileen and John requested donations to the Bradley Lowery Foundation and Alzheimer’s Research UK.
A total of £195 was raised for each cause.