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A WEST Malvern couple will this weekend be celebrating 60 years of happy marriage.

John and Jean Mobbs were both born in Reading in 1932, but since 1965 have called Malvern home after Mr Mobbs's career with a chemical company brought them to the Midlands.

"John was based in Birmingham, but we didn't want to live there, and we knew Malvern from visits when we were younger, so we decided to live here, because it's so beautiful," said Mrs Mobbs.

The two knew each other from a young age, as Mr Mobbs used to play cards with his future wife's brother, but they date their relationship from a meeting on the banks on the river Thames, when Mrs Mobbs, a champion swimmer, was on the way to a swimming pool. Her future husband was also sporty, playing rugby and teaching as a Lawn Tennis Association coach.

After getting married in 1954 and moving to Malvern, the couple raised their three sons and, for about 25 years, successfully ran the Rock House guest house in West Malvern.

They have now retired but still live close to Rock House, which is now a private home occupied by one of their sons.

"We spend a lot of lime with our grandchildren, which we love," said Mrs Mobbs.

And the secret of a long and happy marriage? "Tolerance, compromise and patience," said Mrs Mobbs.