February 7, 2017 admin

True love stories: Simon and Becky

In the run-up to Valentine’s day, we’re blogging about some of the amazing true love stories our customers have shared with us.

One of our favourites is in Simon Wilkinson’s memoir, ‘A Lifelong Springtime of the Heart’:

(You can read an extract of Simon’s book here.)

In 1970 Simon was a young Police Constable, yet to realise his destiny was to become a priest. One day, he and a friend stumbled into the local nurses’ residences, to ask if anyone wanted to come out. He wasn’t expecting anyone to say yes – but fate intervened. Becky, who had just come off shift, was happy to oblige. From that day onwards their lives changed for the better.

“She is, quite simply, the star of the show, without whom I would have diminished in all that I have done”

Soon they began to spend all their time together, bonding over their mutual love of corn-on-the-cob,the church, and spending time with friends. Though they had their ups and downs, Simon writes in his book that the thought of not being with Becky was from the start, ‘unthinkable’.

University and marriage


In 1971 Simon decided that he wanted to become a priest, so he quit the police and applied to university. It looked like everything was about to change between he and Becky:

As the day of my departure for university approached, Becky became more and more upset. One day, when she was crying and saying that she knew that she would never see me again, I responded with: If you dont stop crying, I won’t marry you! Wonderful proposal!”

When Simon left for Nottingham University in September 1971, neither he nor Becky had a phone. So, for the next few months they wrote each other letters. Making the best out of a bad situation, Simon wrote to her in Greek both to practise his own and to teach Becky at the same time.

They married in  April 1972, and went on honeymoon to Tunisia. When they got back, they moved into the house in Beeston that Simon had lovingly spent months renovating. They could now begin their married life.

Married life

In December 1973, Simon and Becky had their first child, a boy. In 1974 Simon graduated from university, and over the next few years, their son was joined by another boy and two girls. Their familphoto-1_2015-5-14y was now complete.

Taking the cloth meant Simon had to relocate every six years. Together as a family, they travelled around England from Surrey to Yorkshire to Wiltshire. Becky and Simon’s lives were centred on the church: they held Shrove Tuesday pancake competitions in the community, organised fetes and fayres for the villages and in 1978 Becky started a career making vestments. As a family, they had many ups and downs, struggling through various family illnesses and ailments. Throughout it all Becky and Simon’s love remained strong.

Simon, in his book, says of Becky:

“She is, quite simply, the star of the show, without whom I would have diminished in all that I have done”