Montrose couple John and Muriel Murray met the lord provost as they celebrated 60 years of marriage together.
Lord Provost of Angus Council Councillor Ronnie Proctor visited the couple at the home they have shared on Bridge Street for 52 years, marking their diamond anniversary.
But, for Muriel, the highlight of the occasion was having all the family together for the first time in two years.
Two of her sisters, Anne and Alison, travelled from Turkey, and her eldest sister Pat, who lives in Edinburgh, also attended the family get-together.
John and Muriel’s daughter Fiona came from France, and their three other children, Linda, Shona and Rodger were also there – all with their partners and children.
The couple’s great-grandchild was also there at the family lunch in the George Hotel, in Montrose, along with news of a second great-grandchild on the way.
Muriel, 82, said: “Having all the family there together – that was the best bit.
“All the little ones, the grandchildren and great-grandchildren. It’s been two years since we had everyone together like that.
“It was just wonderful. It made me feel so lucky to have them all and to be so healthy.”
The couple were gifted with plenty of flowers, including from the Lord Provost and depute Lord Lieutenant Robina Addison, who also visited them.
And they received a card from the Queen, which Muriel says is “beautiful”.
Sharing her secrets to a long-lasting marriage, Muriel said: “It’s a bit of give and take and knowing each other before you get married.”
Met at the dancing
Before they met, John and Muriel knew of each other through mutual friends but it was a love of dancing which brought them together.
They met one evening at the Rosemont, which they continued to visit regularly during their courtship, to dance to live bands.
Muriel has always lived in Montrose and John is originally from Laurencekirk.
John, now 87, moved to Montrose when the couple were married in 1962 – when he was 27 years old and Muriel was 22.
At the time he had just finished four years in the RAF as a police officer and was returning to work as a joiner, which he had trained to be before being called up for national service.
Having grown up on a farm, John has a love of the countryside and the couple have taken many holidays in country locations across Britain throughout their marriage.
They also travelled to Canada to visit Muriel’s aunt and uncle, and enjoyed taking their children on caravan holidays when they were younger.
John was also formerly a beekeeper. Muriel remembers fondly that he would make the honey, while she made the jam.
She said: “We didn’t have the same hobbies but we liked doing a lot of things together.”
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