BILL and Sybil Holland have had their share of troubles but they say the trick to a long and happy marriage is weathering the storm.

Last week the pair celebrated their diamond wedding anniversary.

Two children, five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren later, the couple reflected on their wedding day on May 29 1954, in St Paul’s Church in Edgeware Road.

Sybil, 80, said: “It’s a long time ago now. There aren’t many people who were there around any more.

“I think it was sunny and we held it at around lunchtime. It’s hard to remember now.”

To celebrate their big day, their elder son Robert sent them on a surprise holiday to Hayling Island in Hampshire.

Sybil, said: “It was all organised by Robert and Theresa. They had a pink bag with all the information in it and we went for two nights at Warner’s at Hayling Island.

“We thought it was wonderful. “They had done everything. It was lovely, and we didn’t expect anything like that.

“He drove us down there too last Wednesday and picked us up again on Friday.”

Sybil was also delighted to receive a message from the Queen, congratulating the couple.

She said: “It was lovely. The postman had to call us because he couldn’t just put it through the door because it comes recorded delivery. “He said it was such an honour to be able to deliver it. I don’t think many people get to celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary.”

Bill was a police constable with Wiltshire Police before he retired 30 years ago.

The family travelled around the county as his job involved postings to Salisbury, Sandy Lane, and Tidworth as well as Swindon.

The 81-year-old said: “I loved it. I loved every minute of it. Not sure I would now though.”

The couple had two sons. Robert was born in the year after they married in 1955, and now works as an oil engineer.

Sybil was pleased that he still lives close by.

She said: “He just lives around the corner.

Robert’s younger brother, Ian, was born in 1960 but died in 1997 after complications in an operation following a long illness.