A LOCAL couple celebrated their diamond wedding last Thursday (July 14) at their home in Inverurie.
Agnes and william (Willie) Skene received flowers and a bottle of ten-year-old malt whisky, presented by Inverurie and District councillor, Michael Raeburn, on behalf of Aberdeenshire Council.
Both were born in the heart of Aberdeenshire’s countryside, she at Culsalmond and, while Willie was born in Oldmeldrum, he was raised in Fishorford. After Agnes left school, she went to look after two small children on a farm adjacent to the farm where Willie worked.
Speaking of their first encounter, Agnes said: “They had no servants where Willie worked, so I did their baking. It was then that I first met him. I think he must have liked my scones and my buns. He’s stayed with me for 60 years, so I must have done something right.”
Willie joked: “She was too near – I couldn’t pass up the opportunity.”
As 20-year-olds, Agness and Willie spent their leisure time going out on their bikes and enjoying local dances. They began their four-year courtship before before embarking on wedded bliss in July, 1951.
The year after their marriage, Agnes gave birth to their daughter Wilma, followed four years later came son Alastair.
Agnes said Willie was a farm worker “for all his days”. He worked for the Walker family at Old Rayne for 47 years before his retirement and their subsequent move to Inverurie. Describing their lives in those days, she said: “It was work, work, work all the time, we’d work evenings and weekends so there wasn’t much time for socialising, but we did visit friends.”
As “country folk”, the couple enjoyed the simple things. Wilma said: “We used to play cards, we ran a whist club for about 20 years, that was our hobby.”
Having moved to Inverurie upon Willie’s retirement in 1991, Agnes said they enjoyed returning out to the country: “I enjoy going back sometimes, I’m still a country quine.”
As time went on, the couple were belssed with five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren who, with their families, are divided between Inverurie and Insch.
Willie had no intention of sitting about when he retired from farm work - to the contrary, he has been employed at Thainstone since his retirement, carrying out a number of different tasks, saying “that’s my hobby”. He has worked at Thainstone since retirement in 1991.
And there was more to the success of their marriage than Ages’s scones and buns. Willie said: “You just take every day as it comes” and Agnes added: We’ve been happy all our days. We never spent money unless we had it, we never kept secrets and we’ve always been honest with each other, that’s what makes a good marriage.
Agnes and Willy are planning a family meal at a later date, but as yet, no plans are in place.