AN ADORABLE couple from Gourock are celebrating their 75th wedding diamond anniversary in lockdown.

Allan and Nora McLeod tied the knot in London just after the Second World War where both served in the armed forces and their paths first crossed.

Allan, 98, and Nora, 95, were born and brought up at opposite ends of the country - Allan in Port Glasgow and Nora on the Isle of Wight.

Years later the couple locked eyes with one another for the first time.

Allan said: “During the war I was an anti-aircraft gunner in the Blitz, stationed in Knightsbridge in London, where I escorted the ATS girls to and from their barracks through Hyde Park at night.

"That's how I ended up meeting Nora.

“I remember when I first saw her - she was dancing with another soldier and he was going to fight with me over her.

Diamond wedding

Diamond wedding

"But I managed to get her in the end.”

Nora - who worked as a cook in the officer’s mess in Rutland Gate - said she also vividly remembers their early encounters.

She said: “I remember Allan never wanted to dance — he preferred to play the musical instruments.

“But I had learned the jitterbug while I was stationed in Cornwall with the Americans, so I used to enjoy dancing.”

Both Allan and Nora can recall the horrors of the conflict that unfolded before their eyes, especially the flying bombs.

Nora said: “You would hear them buzzing and then it would stop and you knew they were going to come down.

“One dropped on a soldiers’ barracks not far from where we were stationed.”

After surviving the war, the couple tied the knot on Nora’s 20th birthday on February 1 in 1946.

Having left the armed forces the couple moved to Port Glasgow and went on to have four children - Ann, Margaret, Allan, and Joyce between 1947 and 1959.

Allan, who will turn 99 in August, worked in the shipyards and admiralty during the day, while Norah was a housewife.

Allan played clarinet and saxophone with the famous Charlie Harkins and the Kit Kat Band which performed in various venues in the west of Scotland including The Moorings in Largs, Greenock Town Hall, and The Cragburn Pavilion in Gourock.

They bought the Wool Haberdashery Drapery in Dubbs Road in Port Glasgow in 1966 and worked there until 1990.

Nora said: “It was a job but it was our life too, and a good one.”

After a well deserved retirement, the couple then moved to the Isle of Wight, where they enjoyed spending time with Ann and her two daughters.

They moved back to Scotland 2013, settling in Gourock's Ashton Court close to their family which now spans five generations.

Five generations pictured in 2016

Five generations pictured in 2016

Daughter Ann, who still lives on the Isle of Wight has two daughters, two grandsons and a great granddaughter.

Margaret, who lives in Wemyss Bay, has one son and two daughters, five granddaughters, one great granddaughter and one great grandson.

Allan who lives in Gourock, has one daughter and one son, and has three grandsons, and Joyce lives in Greenock.

Margaret said: "Mum and dad enjoy being taken out for coffee and love visiting Kip Marina and the Cafe Riva, sitting watching the boats and swans or going for a wee drive to Largs, and they love spending time with their family.

"They have been wonderful during this last year, with being confined to their home and adhering to the rules of Covid.

"We pop in every day making sure they are okay and tending to their needs but they do wonderfully well.

"They have each other and they have us."

The couple's Covid-19 vaccine appointments were within ten minutes of each other a couple of weeks back at the Gourock Health Centre, and they said it was 'wonderfully well arranged'.

Seventy five years of marriage is known as the Second Diamond Wedding after the first diamond is celebrated at 60.

Asked for her parents' secret of longevity in age and marriage, Margaret said:"They love each other to bits - happiness is the answer."