Hastings couple celebrate 60 years of marriage with Diamond Wedding Anniversary

Hastings couple Noel and Sheila Schofield celebrated their Diamond wedding anniversary today (Thursday, July 8).

Thursday, 8th July 2021, 3:38 pm

They met in 1959 at a Joe Loss dance at Bridlington, on the East Yorkshire coast. Noel was on home leave after a 2 and half year tour in Malaya with the RAF. Sheila a secretary with a car parts firm.

They married in 1961 at Sheila’s home village of Middleton on the Wolds, in East Yorkshire. After a honeymoon on Isle of Wight, moved to live in a small single room touring caravan near the RAF College at RAF Cranwell in Lincolnshire where Noel was stationed. Over the next 10 years the family raised 3 children, 2 boys and a girl, and lived in 8 different homes. Whilst Noel was twice sent away from his family when the RAF posted him abroad to Borneo during the military campaign against Indonesia in the early sixties.

In 1971, after four years at Rainham, Kent with Noel employed by an aerospace company based at Rochester airport working on the TSR2 and the F111 fighter-bomber projects, he was offered a management job with Ekco-Hawkins.

Noel and Sheila  Schofield 60th wedding anniversary SUS-210607-105226001
Noel and Sheila Schofield 60th wedding anniversary SUS-210607-105226001

Although the family had only visited Hastings once when Noel played rugby against Hastings and Bexhill at their old ground at the Polegrove in Bexhill, the family then moved from Rainham to Hastings.

Ekco-Hawkins were the well known local company that made the famous Hostess Trolley, and that later become part of the Philips Electronics group. He stayed for nearly 30 years until the factory was shut down. After which he worked for 15 years as a management consultant for various companies in the South East covering Health and Safety at Work and Environmental management.

For the past 50 years they have stayed in their original Hastings home in Blacklands. A house close to good schools, the park and St Helen’s woods. Five grandchildren have since arrived to add to the family.

Early in her time at Hastings Sheila enjoyed working part time in the China department of Plummers department store, a store that later became Debenhams, and later as a clerk in the service department at Philips.

Noel has been a Freemason in lodges at Battle, Bexhill and St Leonard’s for nearly 50 years, whilst Sheila is an active member of Christ Church, Blacklands and the many social groups associated with that church.

Although job opportunities have since caused two of them the move away, both parents think that all 3 children David, Alastair and Emma were fortunate in being raised and schooled in Hastings. The town enabling them to enjoy a wide range of social activities, including scouts, guides, boating, fishing and sea rowing, with all three becoming church choristers at Christ Church.