tHE BALLAD OF jANE AND jOHN
A young couple were starting to date
As the swinging 60s got under way
Dashing John, rugby player, classics teacher
Lovely Jane, the secretary he admired every day.
Their love was born in Cambridge
For John the wrong colour Blue
But from the moment they met at the Leys
They could sense that this love was true.
It was on a trip to see West Side Story
That John Walter got down on one knee
"Jane, If I'm Tony you're my Maria
Tonight, tonight - will you marry me?"
Among family and friends they tied the knot
1960, July 23rd
They exchanged their vows and
There is no doubt they have stuck to their words.
Looking back their marriage has been special
So many moments of delight and joy
From the birth of Rachel their daughter
To having boy, after boy, after boy.
Another decade and another big moment
moving home 11 days after the birth of Dan
From East House in a posh private school
To a comprehensive and life in a caravan.
Millom brought many fond memories
But it was a town that could not meet their needs
So John got a promotion to headmaster
And the family moved to Rawdon in Leeds.
That stay saw some key family developments
with Jane's mum Grace moving over the road
As the kids aged she returned to the workplace
With Rathbones and then at Crossroads.
But once again a new decade brought change
Moving to the grandeur of Netherton Hall
It was a wreck when the Horns moved in
But became a home that was loved by them all.
After most of their marriage in Yorkshire
They decided to make Leicestershire home
Closer to family spread across the Midlands
The perfect place for Tiger John to roam.
Sixty years is a long enough marriage
For a story that goes on and on
So forgive me if I end with some highlights
So this ballad doesn't go on too long.
As well as eldest child Rachel,
Sons Barney, Daniel and Matt
There was lovely Plato the dog
Not forgetting Tiddles the cat.
Their careers brought Royal recognition
Wal's OBE for his work with SHA
Arn's fingers have been in so many pies
It's easy to forget what the reasons for her gong are.
Counselling, probation, Chairman of the bench
Committees too many to list in order
But among the favourites for the kids
A job with YTV bringing a video recorder.
Their current job they see as among their most vital
But with Mila, to Gran and Grandpa we add the word great
They are so proud of Luke, Aidan, Gwilym and Mim
Not forgetting James and Alex, who is always Gran's mate.
Other highlights are holidays in Cornwall and Brittany
Especially their home in St Radegonde in France
Now they have fallen in love with Weybourne
Will they give it up? - no luck or chance.
They share so many things in common
Loving jazz, the Archers and Newsnight
In recent years Arn joined Wal as a Rotarian
But TMS can still cause a fight.
So as this ballad comes to a close,
There is just on thing we can all say
Covid 19 may have changed celebration plans
But it can't spoil this wonderful day.
*Arn refers to Jane, Wal is John, TMS is test match special and SHA is Secondary Heads Association (now ASCL Association of School and College Leaders).
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