Never too old for romance as Roy and his bride tie the knot

Evita and Roy Cleverly

Evita and Roy Cleverly

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ROMANCE is blossoming later in life for one city couple who tied the knot over the weekend.

Evita and Roy Cleverly enjoyed a whirlwind romance last summer before Roy, 83, proposed to Evita Holloway, 70, last November.

Evita was 69 and on holiday in Bletchley from her native South Africa, visiting her daughter and family at their home in Simpson Road.

A chance encounter at the local bus stop led to Evita meeting Roy, who has lived in Milton Keynes for than 18 years, and the spark grew from there.

Evita said: “Roy was living in the same road I was holidaying in and we happened to meet at a bus stop.

“We were each alone and as I did not know about the buses we got talking.

“He showed me around and we met up on further occasions.

“He likes to walk in the afternoons so he invited me to walk with him and I was thrilled to spend time with this dashing gentleman.

“From there he would say,’ come and have a cup of tea’, and then we got to having supper and he would walk me back down the road at 10pm to see me home.”

Roy, who like Evita speaks with the energy and enthusiasm of someone less than half his age, proposed to a shocked Evita on November18 last year. She said: “He popped the question and I asked whether he was serious, but he was.

“So of course I said that I would very much like to marry him.

“I am very privileged and honoured Roy feels he can take on a wife.”

Roy was a widower before having a partner for many years, while Evita, too, had been married before but the marriage broke up.

The two were not expecting to meet anyone else but were thrilled to find each other. They are generally mistaken as being much younger than they actually are and share a love of walking and cooking. As Evita explained: “It was all very unexpected but when you’ve got the chemistry, you’ve got the chemistry.”

Immigration laws were a concern as Evita’s visa expired in December 2011 so she had to return to South Africa for two months to secure her marriage visa. She added: “Fortunately I was able to go ahead and get permission to marry my English gentleman and when I returned here to Roy, I felt as if I’d never been away.”

The wedding was held slightly sooner than the couple had planned to ensure as many of their guests as possible would be able to attend.

About 50 guests joined Mr and Mrs Cleverly as they said their vows at the Register Office in Bletchley.

They later enjoyed a reception at the Swan Hotel.