Falkirk couple celebrate six decades of marriage

Alex and Irene Anderson with Provost Pat Reid
Alex and Irene Anderson with Provost Pat Reid

A chance meeting in a factory office was the cue for the start of a lifetime partnership that has already lasted 60 years.

During the early 1950s, Irene Fyfe travelled from her home in Cumbernauld Village to apply for a job as a PBX telephonist at Smith & Wellstood in Bonnybridge.

While being interviewed, Alex popped his head round the door to pass on some information to Miss Humphries who was carrying out the interview and smiled at Irene before disappearing out the door.

Irene got the job, little realising that the young man who worked in the order department and had smiled at her would eventually become her husband. However, Alex said from the moment he saw her he fell for her big brown eyes.

The couple eventually married on June 5, 1954 in Cumbernauld Parish Church with the reception in Falkirk’s Tudor House.

They moved to London where Irene was employed as a receptionist in a Harley Street clinic, while Alex worked nearby in Conduit Street in the West End.

Their eldest son Ian was born in Bexley Nursing Home and five years later Alex junior was born at home in Cumbernauld Village.

The family came back to Scotland when Alex was offered a job at W.Alexander in Brown Street, Camelon, where he remained for 31 years in the buying/stores division until the company closed.

His last five years before retirement were spent in Falkirk Royal’s pharmacy department.

Irene returned to full-time work when their two sons were grown up and worked in administration with the school medical officer, the buying office at W.Alexander (Coach Works) in Camelon and eventually part-time in the maternity unit at Falkirk Royal before retiring.

Alex (87) and Irene (80) now live in Queens Drive, Falkirk, while Ian, wife Moira and children Marc and Emma, all live in Dubai, and Alex, wife Alison and daughter Laura, live in Denny.

The couple said: “We’ve been blessed with such a wonderful family and many kind friends and neighbours, and these are our recipe for a long and happy married life.”

Both keen tennis fans, the couple celebrated their Diamond Anniversary at Cromlix House Hotel, Dunblane, owned by tennis star Andy Murray.