GREAT MATES: Linda and Harry Henson celebrate their golden wedding anniversary today.
GREAT MATES: Linda and Harry Henson celebrate their golden wedding anniversary today. Rowan Schindler

Mateship the key to 50 years of happy marriage

MATESHIP is the key ingredient to a long and successful marriage according to Harry and Linda Henson, who are celebrating 50 years of marriage today.

They emigrated to Australia in 1981, with a brief period spent in New Zealand.

The couple married on the April 1, 1967 in Salford, England, and the story of how they met is a unique one.

"We actually met when we were 13 and 14-years of age.

"It was a real rough area of Salford... there were some Gypsies parked on this spare ground and they started harassing these two girls, and my mother went out with a broom and beat them off.

"And instead I spoke to Linda and Jean, her friend, and it started from there. They were from the other side of town and they didn't know what our side was like," Harry said.

"That was how I met his mother," Linda said.

"A bit scary."

 

Harry Henson looks at the photo of his family on his wedding day.
Harry Henson looks at the photo of his family on his wedding day. Rowan Schindler

Harry and Linda quickly struck up a close connection which revolved around friends and music in 60s England.

"I think the main thing was, our same like of music, and that still goes today, 50s, 60, and 70s rock'n'roll," Harry said.

"I think that was a starter, wasn't it?

"We used to go to the shows a lot, didn't we?" Linda said.

"Didn't have fighting in the clubs back then, you only got coffee and Coke.

"That's Coca-Cola, not "coke"," Linda said we a laugh.

The two quickly married and began a life together.

"We got married when we were 19 and 20," Harry said.

"It was fantastic. Terrific. We had a Jaguar r car. We went away on our honeymoon," Harry said.

"Weather was okay, sunshine," Linda said.

"Which was unusual," Harry added.

"And we went for our honeymoon in Blackpool."

 

Harry and Linda Henson on their wedding day. April 1, 1967.
Harry and Linda Henson on their wedding day. April 1, 1967. Rowan Schindler

The couple said there was one thing which always kept them close through the good and bad times every marriage has.

"Generally it's been good, and I think the reason it's been good is we are mates, you know, more than anything else," Harry said.

"We've gone through the bad times, and there has been bad times, but most of the times were good times.

"We've seen most of the world, we've done things we'd probably never had done if we had stayed in the UK back then."

"It's been great, a great 50 years, wish we could have another 50."

Harry spent his life as a safety engineer, working on project near and far, while Linda worked in administration, telephone switchboard and also spent time as a courier.

 

Harry and Linda Henson's letter of congratulations from Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
Harry and Linda Henson's letter of congratulations from Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. Rowan Schindler

They had planned a weekend party but the recent weather events have forced them to postpone to a later date.

"We were absolutely delighted to receive cards from his excellency Sir Peter Cosgrove, the prime minister, and all these other people," Harry said.

"It made us feel fantastic.

"Because we had to cancel our thing, I have to say, we have got more congratulation cards from the government than we have from our friends and family."

When asked if there was a secret recipe for marriage the couple had found, Harry was assured.

"Mateship. You can put love in there, you can put care in, whatever.

"Unless you're mates, it's it. You gotta be friends."

Gympie Times

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