A ST IVES couple who met at a cricket match have built a long lasting partnership which has accumulated 50 (not out) years of marriage. Geoff and Joyce Hookham, both 70, were married on July 28, 1956, at St Ives Methodist Church – a day which set them ba

Geoff and Joyce Hookham today.

A ST IVES couple who met at a cricket match have built a long lasting partnership which has accumulated 50 (not out) years of marriage.

Geoff and Joyce Hookham, both 70, were married on July 28, 1956, at St Ives Methodist Church - a day which set them back about £7 in total.

They had met when Geoff used to play cricket for St Ives. He slipped a note to his sister to be passed onto Joyce asking her out on a date.

It was the start of a relationship which was to build a half-century marriage.

Joyce told The Hunts Post she recalled Geoff's marriage proposal: "It was May 17. We had been to the cinema and were running home in the rain and he asked me. We were officially engaged in June and my ring cost £9."

As Geoff was a well-known local sportsman, details about the wedding were published in The Hunts Post. The headline was 'St Ives sportsman marries'.

"Our wedding day was a beautiful day although I was worried before we left as there were thunderstorms, but it died down before I got there," Joyce said.

The couple went to Brighton on their honeymoon where the hotel cost £10 - Joyce has kept all the receipts from her wedding, a notebook which contains her plans and even her wedding dress.

The Hookhams have lived in St Ives all their lives and have five children: Phillip, 48, Collin, 46, Caroline, 44, Nigel, 38, and Martin, 33. They also have 11 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

The pair are still active in various walks off life, helping to organise previous St Ives carnivals and Joyce still helps with other associations and St Ives Darby and Joan Club.

Geoff still enjoys his sport, playing bowls for the town as well as doing odd jobs for the family. He was also a governor at Thorndown School for 30 years.

He was a carpenter by trade and had his own building firm for more than 30 years. Joyce was a catering clerk and then helped Geoff with his business.

Joyce believes the secret to their long and happy marriage is "we get on so well and still adore each other". Geoff believes caring for each other was the key.

The Hookham's children have organised a golden wedding anniversary celebration for their parents on Sunday, July 29.