CHILDHOOD sweethearts who attended and then both taught at a Chipping Sodbury school are set to celebrate their golden wedding anniversary this weekend.

Melvyn and Ruth Jeffries married at St Mary’s Church, Yate, on August 8, 1970 after first meeting at Chipping Sodbury Grammar School.

The couple will celebrate five decades together on Saturday.

Mel and Ruth moved to Yate in 1976 following their appointments as PE teachers at the Chipping Sodbury school.

Although Ruth left and became a primary school teacher at Rangeworthy Primary School, Mel spent his entire career at the grammar.

The happy couple have two grown-up children, and Mel and Ruth agree the key to a happy marriage are to respect, trust, be patient and support one another - but they also say one of the most important ways to keep a happy marriage going is to enjoy your own interests and to keep your independence.

Ruth said: “We have spent more time together in lockdown, than we have in our entire married life, it is very good to maintain independence.

“It’s vital to have a few good friends but also to have a wider group of friends to enjoy times with.

“We think a good row is healthy for a marriage but we won’t go to sleep without it being resolved.”

The couple had hope for a holiday and then an afternoon tea party to celebrate but cancelled due to Covid-19, so they have decided to celebrate at home with a glass of champagne instead.

Mel added: “I am thankful for a wonderful wife, a wonderful education and a wonderful career in this wonderful community.”