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Ringstead couple reflect on 70 years of marriage

Gordon & Flo Hunstanton

Gordon & Flo Hunstanton

Gordon Taylor was amused by the advertisement in the Lynn News regarding the names of wedding anniversaries as they only went up to 50.

In October, Gordon celebrated his 70th wedding anniversary (platinum) with Flo, whom he had met when she was just 15 and working as a housemaid at the rectory in Ringstead.

The war made for an unusual courtship as Gordon was in the Navy working on minesweepers.

They had talked about getting married when Gordon was on leave in the summer of 1943, but there was no time to prepare for a wedding as one day Flo was handed a telegram that simply read: “Arriving today 9pm to get married.”

They did manage to find a wedding ring and were married on October 16 in St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury St Edmunds. The next morning Gordon returned to his ship and they did not see one another for the next six months.

A few weeks before D-Day, Gordon found himself ‘volunteered’ for the dangerous job of clearing the harbours of mines at St Nazaire and Cherbourg, and he continued in mine disposal until 1946. Now 93, he holds the British Empire Medal (Military) for his work in the French harbours.

Going ashore in Normandy in June 1944, Gordon saw beautiful roses hanging over a wall. He cut one and sent it to Flo. She treasures it to this day.

After the war they returned to Ringstead where they brought up their family. Gordon and Flo have three grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

Nephew Ian recounted that joker Gordon was not always such a romantic.

He said: “Gordon and Flo were sitting together and Gordon had a glass of whisky.

He said: “I could not have managed it without you.”

Flo said: “That’s nice.”

He said: “I was talking to the whisky.”

Photo: Gordon and Flo Taylor pictured at Hunstanton’s United Services Club where they can be found most lunchtimes.

 

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