THEY may be celebrating 70 years of marriage, but the time has flown by for platinum anniversary couple Ron and Margaret Clavell.

The pair, who both grew up in Salisbury, celebrated their milestone anniversary yesterday and Mr Clavell said: “It doesn’t seem that long. We keep thinking ‘where’s the time gone?’”

The couple met through friends and Mr Clavell worked up the courage one evening to ask his future wife, then 16, to go to the cinema with him. “That’s how it all started, but I can’t remember what we saw now,” he said.

Love blossomed and the couple got engaged before Ron, 91, was called up to the army in 1942. He served with the 5th Wiltshire Regiment in the 43rd Wessex Division and was based in Kent when the couple married at Wilton Church in 1944. They moved back to Salisbury when Mr Clavell left the army in October 1945.

He then worked as a bricklayer, eventually becoming self-employed in the building trade until he retired aged 67. His wife worked as a cashier and bookmaker in Salisbury until Tony was born in 1952.

The couple also have two grandchildren and a two-year-old great granddaughter and celebrated their anniversary with a family dinner at the Grasmere Hotel on Sunday.

They like to get out and about with their family and are members of several local social clubs. Mr Clavell is also a keen keyboard player and ten pin bowler.

Mrs Clavell, 88, said the secret to their long and happy marriage is looking after each other.