Tom and Christine celebrate 70 years

Published 12:00pm 19 August 2022

Tom and Christine celebrate 70 years
Words by Nick Crockford

Nothing was going to stop Bolton Clarke Inverpine aged care residents Tom and Christine Hooper from celebrating their 70th (platinum) wedding anniversary together.

The pandemic might be continuing, but the Inverpine team at Murrumba Downs organised a morning tea (picture above) to mark the milestone on July 23.

Now, aged 89 and 92 respectively, they still enjoy each other’s company and Mrs Hooper said “try every day to spend time together”.

“We had a lovely day, we had roses and a lovely cake organised for us,” she said.

Move Down Under

“We weren’t even sure up until the very day whether we were going to be able to spend our anniversary together.

“When you think about it, it really doesn’t seem so long ago. 

“Time seems to go so quickly when you’re busy like us - moving over here to Australia, finding work, settling in with the kids and getting on with things.”

Mr and Mrs Hooper spent the day reflecting fondly on seven decades of marriage and Tom says they still love each other just as much as when they first met.

Tom and Christine celebrate 70 years
Tom and Christine Hooper on their wedding day, July 23, 1952

“I was about 17 when I met Christine - she was 13 and still at school. I used to meet her after school and take her home – she would sit on the crossbar of my bike,” Tom said.

“We lived in a quiet city called Exeter in England. It’s right down near the toe of England and we were really happy there.

“We always got on really well with Christine’s parents and we used to take them on trips in the car. It was lovely because Christine’s dad only ever had a motorbike in those days.”

For Mrs Hooper, to this day her memories of the wedding still make her giggle. She was 17 and Tom was 21 by then.

'Quite surprised'

“My mum and dad let us get married because I think they were afraid that I would put the family to shame, it was like that in those days,” she said.

“I think everyone was quite surprised that they were wrong though!”

“We got married in the registry office and it cost seven and sixpence in those days, and we always laugh because you could get a dog’s licence for the same amount of money.”

After a few years, the Hoopers had two children and decided to migrate to Australia to start a better life.

Tom and Christine celebrate 70 years
Tom and Christine Hooper

“We were in our 30s when we moved over to Australia with our two boys,” Mrs Hooper said.

“We thought there was more opportunity here for our sons mainly, but also the weather was better.”

And the secret to a strong and happy marriage of 70 years? “Never let the sun go down on your wrath,” she added.

Big milestone

Bolton Clarke Inverpine Lifestyle Co-ordinator Rekha Singh and her colleagues have loved watching Christine and Tom celebrate such a big milestone.

“Life doesn’t stop when you come to aged care,” she said.

“With all the things happening at this present time with so many people sick or having COVID-19, there is a lot of stigma out there.

“We are always looking to do more to support residents to live well, so that no one is isolated.”

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