A POPULAR Padiham couple who tied the knot just six months after meeting are celebrating 50 golden years together.
Former Mayoress of Padiham Carol Stinton said it was love at first sight when sweetheart David first walked into her life – at the former Elgin Manufacturing Co. in Springhill Road.
Carol (70) was working as a receptionist there when David (76) walked through the doors as a contractor from Birmingham.
She said: “I thought David was a foreigner at first because of his funny accent but it was love at first sight.
“I asked our boilerman Jack to check him out and shortly after David took me to Todmorden Train Station in his Zephyr Zodiac which sealed the deal!
“The key to a happy marriage is definitely love and we still love each other now.”
David left his home behind and settled in East Lancashire just six months later when the couple were married at All Saints Church, Haberghaam.
They bought their first house in Railway Terrace, Padiham, and their honeymoon was in Caernarvon, Wales, with the in-laws.
Carol added: “I was an only child but David was one of six so I inherited a family. My mother wasn’t pleased at first because she wanted me to marry someone in a suit rather than a boiler suit but we’ve had a wonderful life together and I still love him just as much.”
After working together in the Walton Arms, Altham, where Carol served in the cocktail bar and David as a waiter, the couple opened their own bed and breakfast Windsor House in Church Street, Padiham.
Carol added: “I was like Basil Fawlty – I used to shout at all the guests! They must have enjoyed it though because they kept coming back. We had the business for 15 years.”
Since retiring, the couple have pursued their very different interests. David prefers the quiet contemplation of gardening and cycling while Carol has become somewhat of a celebrity on the nation’s television screens.
She has appeared in “Going Going Gone” with Eric Knowles, “The Weakest Link” and famously a saucy appearance in the cult hit “Come Dine With Me” – a show David has still not watched.
Carol said: “I got some criticism for Come Dine With Me but it was heavily edited. My appearance did see me invited as a guest on Fern Britton’s chat show, which went out live and was a great experience.”
Carol has always kept busy – she also ran an antiques shop, was a magistrate, independent councillor in Burnley and a member of Burnley Mayoress’s Committee.
The couple, who have three children and eight grandchildren, one of whom has just returned from a tour of Afghanistan with the Army, celebrated their anniversary with close family at Waddow Hall.