The most popular song of 1958 was Volare by Domenico Modugno and Patricia Nottage may have danced to it at her wedding that year.

Karitane nurse Patricia Branford from Mangamahu married farm manager Douglas Nottage from Hunterville and the couple will celebrate 60 years of marriage this week.

"We were late starters for those days," says Patricia.

"We were in our early 30s and most people married younger in those days."

Douglas and Patricia Nottage at their 1958 wedding.
Douglas and Patricia Nottage at their 1958 wedding.

The couple met through their younger siblings - Douglas' brother and Patricia's sister who had married earlier.

"We have two sons who live in Australia and our daughter Donna lives in Palmerston North."

The Nottages were foster parents to a number of children and Donna, says Patricia, was the one who stayed.

"She wanted to stick with us and I'm so glad she did because she is a wonderful daughter."

Patricia, now 91, and Douglas, 95, still live in their own home in Hunterville and have never wanted to live anywhere else.

'We look out on the lovely green hills and we never get tired of that."

Patricia says she is not as fit as she would like to be but Douglas, she says, is as "fit as a flea".

The couple's son Craig is home from Australia and busy organising two celebrations for his parents' anniversary.


"We are having a small gathering with relatives on Thursday and then a bigger party on Saturday," says Patricia.

Registered couples in the Commonwealth receive a congratulatory message from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on their 60th wedding anniversary.

"We don't have ours yet but we haven't read the mail today," says Patricia.

Although not as mobile as she used to be, Patricia still likes to spin and meets with
her weekly group for a good yarn.