A WELL kent Beith couple have received a special message from King Charles and the Queen Consort as they celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary.

Janet and Douglas Boyce will mark 60 years of marriage today (Saturday, December 17) by spending the weekend with their daughter, their granddaughter and her husband and close family friends to enjoy a theatre trip, champagne and a lovely meal.

Janet (nee McEwan) and Douglas met in Paisley in August 1961 at a party when they were 20 and 24-years-old, respectively.

After many proposals which Janet had declined - as she felt she was too young to get married - she finally said yes!

Controversially, they did not get engaged, and decided in November 1962 to get married in December that year, ahead of Christmas. They planned to move to London as soon as they were married.

Douglas was an electrician and secured a transfer to the English capital with his then employer James Kilpatrick & Sons so they could begin a new life and make a fresh start independently from their families.

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: Douglas and Janet with Provost Anthea DicksonDouglas and Janet with Provost Anthea Dickson

They boarded a train on the very day they got married on December 17, 1962 and moved to London.

Shortly after that Janet got a job and they quickly adapted to London life in the sixties.

Two years later they had a daughter and stayed in London for another six years, moving back to Scotland in 1971.

They moved back to Paisley but after a year they decided to move to Beith to enjoy a quieter way of life, closer to the seaside towns they both enjoyed visiting.

For most of their working lives Douglas worked in the Steelworks at Hunterston, continuing his electrical trade, having previously worked in Port Glasgow in the shipyards for a number of years, and Janet worked as a wages clerkess in Kilbarchan at a paper mill.

After 50 years of living in Beith they are well known to locals having made many friends over that time.

Local Provost Anthea Dickson visited the couple on Monday to congratulate them and delivered a lovely flower arrangement and card.

Congratulations Janet and Douglas; 60 years is an amazing achievement, and as Janet often says: "Never a cross word."