Real Lives: Adventure has taken in Yemen and Linlithgow

Marshall and Alice Young met at the dancing in Winchburgh in 1943
Marshall and Alice Young met at the dancing in Winchburgh in 1943
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A COUPLE whose life together has taken them to Yemen and Linlithgow are celebrating their diamond wedding.

Alice and Marshall Young, both 84, met dancing in the Legion Hall in Winchburgh in 1943 when Alice was a telephonist with Telegraph Condenser Company at Bathgate, and Marshall, known as Andy, was employed at Scottish oils Candleworks in Broxburn.

The budding romance was, though, interrupted by his three years’ service in the fleet air arm as an air mechanic.

After being demobbed the pair were engaged and married in Kingscavil Church near Winchburgh on August 25, 1951.

Andy had transferred to Grangemouth refinery by this time, and in 1954 he was transferred to Aden refinery in South Yemen as commissioning operator, where Alice joined him in February 1955.

Their son Craig was born in 1961.

Alice said: “It was an exciting time in South Yemen as we were there during the political troubles and the uprising in Crater.

“The problem was solved by the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders under Colonel Mad Mitch. We also watched the departure of British forces when independence was granted.”

The family left Aden in 1975.

While Alice set up home in Linlithgow, Andy was posted on Das Island in the United Arab Emirates.

He then retired to Linlithgow, where the rest of the family – Craig and wife Anne, with children Lisa and Stuart – also live.

The couple celebrated their diamond wedding at home in Linlithgow.

Andy is a keen gardener and Alice is a lifelong fundraiser, doing voluntary work for the WRVS, and latterly for her favourite charity Crossroads.

Alice is also a founding member of The Abbeyfield and Linlithgow Link and was chairperson of the local RSPCC for five years during the late 1970s.

She said: “I would not have been able to do the charity work I have done without my husband.”

And on the key to a long and happy marriage, she said: “I don’t think there’s a secret – we’ve all had our ups and downs but we have had a very lucky life.

“We made it through the troubles while we were in Aden, and if you can come through that, you can come through anything.

“We listen to each other and we have the same sense of humour.”