Sandy and Irene fifty years wed

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SANDY and Irene West (nee Fullarton), were married at the Old Church in Montrose on December 22, 1962, by the Rev. Wilson, standing in for the Rev. Kennedy.

The couple met at the dancing at the Locarno.

Irene was born at Dunecht, Aberdeenshire, where her father was a gamekeeper, but the family moved to Dun when she was four.

She attended Dun School and then Montrose Academy, after which she worked for the local Co-op.

In later years she worked for a shoe company, and for 15 years from 1989 was a partner then sole proprietor of a shoe shop in Brechin - something she wished she had done sooner.

She is a keen amateur artist, and in the past was a golfer.

Sandy is also a weel-kent face. He was born in Ferryden and went to the local school and then Montrose Academy. He started work as an apprentice baker, and then became a cook in the Merchant Navy. He worked on large passenger vessels such as the Union Castle, and Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth, affectionately known as ‘Lizzie’.

At first the couple lived in Southampton, but Cunard made the decision to send ‘Lizzie’ to work in America for several months in the winter, and Sandy felt it was time to move on.

They came back to Dun, and built the house they have lived in ever since. Sandy worked as a cook at Sunnyside Royal Hospital until he retired.

He joined the SNP in 1965 when the subscription was two shillings (10p), having been inspired by a broadcast by the then leader, Arthur Donaldson.

Letham SNP stalwarts Jim and Irene McGugan encouraged Sandy, and when he put his hand up at a meeting to ask a question, found that he had volunteered to become Jim’s general election agent for North Angus and Mearns.

In 1986 Sandy was elected to Tayside Regional Council as a Montrose representative, and in time became roads convener for the Region. When Tayside Region and Angus District Council were rationalised and Angus Council was created, Sandy was again elected, and continued his work as roads convener.

His Council membership spanned 26 years, including only one spell when he was defeated at the ballot box. He stood down before this year’s local election.

He has been a keen cyclist and walker all his days.

The couple have two sons: Roddy, who is married to Denise and lives in Qatar with children Stein and Jess; and Blair, who lives at Craig.

The whole family got together for a party with friends at the Café Dun on Saturday.