THEY met as teenagers when he was at boys brigade and she was in a ballet class.

Now, decades after love blossomed and sixty years after tying the knot Barrie Harvey, 81 and his wife Mary, 80, are very much a diamond duo.

The couple celebrated their landmark anniversary on Thursday – and received a card from the Queen to congratulate them.

The couple, of Coach Road, Astley married on August 29, 1959, at The Church of St Mary the Virgin in Bucknall, Stoke-on-Trent.

Years earlier, Barrie met Mary at a church hall at nearby Hanley when he was with a boys brigade and she was taking a ballet class. He was 16 and she was 15.

After marrying they moved to Astley and went on to have two children, Jonathan and Sarah.

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Barrie and Mary on their wedding day

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They have three grandchildren. Barrie worked in various refractory and ceramic fibre management jobs during his career.

Crafts maker Mary was employed as a school secretary at Hope Carr Nursery in Leigh for seven years.

She then worked in the same role at Parklee Community Primary School in Atherton before retiring.

The couple regularly attend St Stephen’s Church, Astley and are members of the Leigh and District U3A.

Diehard Port Vale FC fan Barrie praised his wife for looking after him ahead of a heart valve operation he is having next week.