50 years of bliss for twin-nation couple

Rita and Ian Smith. Picture: Comp
Rita and Ian Smith. Picture: Comp
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RITA Vella and Ian Smith from Bonnyrigg have celebrated their Golden Wedding anniversary.

Maltese-born Rita met Ian, from Edinburgh, while he was serving in Malta with the RAF in the early 1960s. She was working as a housekeeper when she was first introduced to her future husband.

During their courtship the couple enjoyed going on walks and to the pictures together.

And they were married in the famous Church of the Assumption of Our Lady, known as the Mosta Dome, in Mosta on the isle of Malta on November 8, 1964.

Ian brought his bride to Scotland to begin a new life in Lasswade. After a short while they moved to Bonnyrigg. And they have lived in the town’s Beech Loan for most of their days.

Ian, 74, initially worked as a postman in Bonnyrigg, then moved to the GPO in Edinburgh until his retirement. Rita, 71, worked with the council as a home help for many years before retiring. They have two daughters, Maria, 49, and Brenda, 46, and two grand-children, Lee, 20, and Daryn, 16.

Ian enjoys a lot of walking and some running and has been known to do the occasional 10km run.

He also enjoys football and supports the local Bonnyrigg Rose unior team.

Rita enjoys a game of bingo with her friends, dancing, the women’s guild and is a regular churchgoer at Our Lady of Consolation in Bonnyrigg.

Rita said of her husband: “He is a good man and I love him to bits. He’s quite quiet whereas I’m full of beans. But we hardly ever argue.” The couple celebrated their milestone occasion by enjoying a “fabulous” meal with family at local Italian restaurant Gigi’s.

Rita was presented with a family photo-album spanning 50 years, which brought tears to her eyes.