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Alex Hamilton and his partner Jane - who took his name many years ago despite not being married - will say ‘I do’ later today at the ages of 91 and 89 respectively.
The couple first met in Jane’s home city of Birmingham in 1956, when they were both married to other people. But it wasn’t until seven years later, on Valentine’s Day 1963, that they decided to run away together and start a life and family of their own.
“When they ran away together, dad asked mum to marry him when her divorce came through,” said the couple’s daughter Sally.
“She said yes but as time went on, there was no real reason for them to get married. They were living fine together and mum changed her name so no one knew they weren’t married.
“But they have been reflecting on their lives for the last year or so and I think they were disappointed they never did get married.
“So dad decided he wanted to put things right and marry mum after 60 years.”
They moved to Stourbridge in 1963 and to Harrogate a year later, before Alex started his own cheese and butter business and moved the family to Bridge of Allan in Scotland.
Sally said her parents had, like everyone, gone through ups and downs in their lives - and had even survived working together in the family business - but added that they were still as close now as they were all those years ago.
“We see them looking over at each other at the table and it’s like they’re 17 years old,” she said. “They always stick by each other. He speaks very highly of her when she’s not in the room and she speaks very highly of him too.
“They just have such a positive outlook on their older years. They just don’t see anything as something to give up or give into. They still go out and live life as best they can.”
Sally added that honesty, having time apart to enjoy hobbies but sharing a social life and spending time with their family had been their secrets to living a happy life together.
Alex and Jane will tie the knot at Tillicoultry Church, with a reception being held at the Roman Camp Hotel in Callander.
They will celebrate with their two daughters Sally and Kate, Alex’s sons Gordon and Neil and Jane’s daughter Beverley by their sides. Most of their 11 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren will also be there.
The day will be made even more special by the fact that Alex’s beloved team Hearts will be playing in the Scottish Cup Final on the same afternoon.
“Dad has missed the last two cup finals Hearts have played in because he went to hospital so we’re telling him just to relax this time because we don’t need that stress on his wedding day,” she said.
“But it would be great if they won. It would make an already really memorable day all the more special. It would be brilliant.”