Howard and Lesley

Howard and Lesley, Lake District 1981

Howard and Lesley, Lake District 1981

Cornwall and Scilly Isles August 1985
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A fabulous holiday – even popping over to the Scilly Isles for the day. Very exciting. Even more exciting was when I had to call a midwife out to attend to Lesley. Thankfully, all was well.

Kenya October 1983
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This was our holiday of a lifetime. I had a business trip to Zambia, and my work grade meant that I travelled business class. I had a word with the travel agent and was able to reduce my travel from business class to cattle class, pay a bit extra (only a few hundred pounds) and end up with a work trip, plus a 2 week holiday for two to Kenya. Get in! So after my work in Zambia, I flew up to Nairobi in Kenya to meet Lesley who had travelled from Heathrow that day. We got on to the overnight train and travelled cross country to Mombassa on the East coast of Africa. That was a train ride to remember. We woke up early morning on the train, opened our cabin window and were greeted by the hot African sun and giraffes in the plains in the distance. Wow!! And we spent the most wonderful time relaxing in The Shelly Beach Hotel (as recommended to me by my dear friend Richard Lemmey). Our apartment was right on the beach and we went on quite a few day trips, such as on an Arab Dhow, a snake farm and a glass bottomed boat. Take a look at our photos.

Whitley Bay and beyond 1981
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We had a couple of trips to Whitley Bay. We went up late 1980 for New Year’s Day and saw my Mum swimming in the sea, then off to the Black Horse to watch the Monkseaton Morris Men. Later in the year we returned to Whitley Bay and went to St Mary’s Island, the Spanish City, then on to Holy Island and into Scotland to visit her Grandma.

Purton Stoke 1981
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We loved our cottage in Purton Stoke (No.15). I named it Low Rush after the original cottage called that in Weardale.  Our biggest project was revealing and restoring the inglenook fireplace. Such a filthy job. The fire never drew properly, but it looked great!. Lesley and settled in here and even joined the village committee.

Lesley’s 21st birthday May 1981
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The purchase of our cottage, no.15 Purton Stoke, completed on 29th May 1981, the same day as Lesley’s 21st birthday! What wonderful (unplanned) timing. We had a fabulous garden party that was attended by lots of family and friends.

Our first house 1980 to 1981
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When Lesley and I got engaged, we lived briefly in my house in 84 Cardigan Road, Reading. Our first marital home was 15 Cherry Avenue in Langley (near Slough). It was a modern staggered terrace and backed onto the main east-west railway running from Paddington to Bristol (and back again I guess).

A trip to Northumberland 1979

I was very keen to show Lesley the delights of the North East. We went to Whitley Bay, then up the coast to Craster, then on to Glasgow (Greenock) to visit her Grandparents.

Before we were married 1978 to 1980
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From the day we first met, we enjoyed a fantastic social life together. We were definitely made for each other and getting married was a no-brainer. I proposed to Lesley in the courtyard of the St George Hotel in Wallingford. Lesley Shore and David Rhodes were there with us at the time. I gave Lesley the engagement ring that I bought in W H Woolworth for £1. We later chose a beautiful ring, made of white gold, diamond and sapphire. Many years later, Victoria inherited this ring and it became her wedding ring.