Bike trip was catalyst for 60 years of marriage for Banknock couple

George Bateman and Janette Bateman celebrated their Diamond wedding anniversary on Thursday. Picture: Michael Gillen
George Bateman and Janette Bateman celebrated their Diamond wedding anniversary on Thursday. Picture: Michael Gillen

Celebrating a very special 
anniversary today 
(Thursday) are well-kent Banknock couple George and Janette Bateman.

They were married on April 2, 1955, at Haggs Parish Church - and 60 years later they are still recognisable as the handsome young couple seen smiling in their wedding photograph.

George and Janette Bateman on their wedding day in 1955

George and Janette Bateman on their wedding day in 1955

Several years before Janette (81), who grew up in Coneypark, was out for a bike ride with a friend in nearby Head of Muir when they stopped to speak to two young men - one of whom was Denny lad George (81).

“He didn’t waste any time and asked me out,” she said.

The couple were engaged in 1953, while George was undertaking his National Service, mainly in Ripon, North Yorkshire.

Their wedding service was led by the Rev. William Mechie, and a small reception was held in Coneypark community hall, which has subsequently been demolished.

The newly-weds enjoyed a weekend honeymoon in Edinburgh, with George still busy on National Service at the time.

After first setting up home in Stirling Street, Denny, the Batemans eventually settled in Banknock, where they have lived ever since.

George initially worked at the REME rail workshop in Stirling, and later became a supervisor at the Burroughs factory in Cumbernauld.

Janette had spells working at Falkirk Marks & Spencer and J&P Coats thread mill in Banton between raising her two children, Iain and Marlene.

A yearly highlight for the family was a holiday to Bournemouth - George and Janette love the southcoast town so much they went annually for an incredible 34 years.

The couple credit their long and happy marriage to “always talking to each other - even after an argument”.

The Batemans will celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary with their family - which includes four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren - with a meal at The Holybank in Stirling on Saturday.