Couple’s recipe for 60-year long marriage

A popular and hard working Kirk Hammerton couple say the key to a long marriage is a determination for it to succeed.

Friday, 30th July 2021, 2:11 pm

Les and Janice Hornby, who married in the village on August 2 1961, also say keeping busy, and consideration and support for each other has helped them to reach their Diamond Wedding.

Daughter Amanda Kennerley said: “They say the secret of a long and happy marriage is expect and accept disagreements but don’t let them take over. Their faith has been a big help throughout.”

Les was born and brought up in the village and Janice moved to Kirk Hammerton in 1958 while Les was doing his National Service in Kenya.

“On his demob, in 1960, he returned to the village dramatic society, which he had joined many years before to find that Janice was then a member,” said Amanda.

“As the saying goes - the rest is history. They married the following year, both aged 22.”

Les resumed his job in the Civil Service on his demob and soon after their marriage he was posted to Cardiff where they remained for three years.

Les worked in the Inland Revenue offices in Llanishen and Janice taught at Llandaff Cathedral prep school.

Family reasons caused a change in direction and they returned to the area to run The Hammerton Hotel on the A59 in the 60’s and 70’s before taking over the village shop and post office when Janice taught part-time at the village primary school.

For a few years while at the Hammerton Hotel, the family also ran the Alexandra Hotel in Bridlington.

After leaving the shop, Les covered for holidays and sickness at local Post Offices, helped by Janice who covered when Les helped at the local undertakers.

The couple now run the village newsagency from their conservatory.

Amanda added: “My father received a BEM for services to Kirk Hammerton in 2012, followed by an invitation to a Buckingham Palace garden party in 2013.

“He has been involved in just about everything that is to do with Kirk Hammerton, ably supported by my mother.

“They are still heavily involved in the cricket club, chapel, church, village hall, newsagency, and the village newsletter which they have collated and printed monthly since 1992.

They have a daughter, Amanda, and a son, Jeremy, plus five grandchildren.