Alan married his mate’s date

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It was lucky Alan Young decided to go to a ball with his best friend because he ended up marrying his mate’s date.

Retired teachers Doreen and Alan Young celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary two weeks early on Saturday, at St Edmundsbury Cathedral’s Refectory.

Doreen, better known as Miss Young the teacher in BBC’s 2006 Evacuation series, was a young civil servant when she went on a date with a colleague.

“We went to a ball and his best friend and I fell in love, and that was Alan,” she said.

Alan, who taught at Culford School for 25 years, recalled: “She didn’t like him so she danced with me. It didn’t worry him — he thought it was a joke!”

The couple from York Road, Bury St Edmunds, hope the weather on their March 30 anniversary will be better than on the day 19-year-old Doreen married 21-year-old Alan in Stoke Newington.Doreen said: “1963 was the second coldest winter in a century. It was still quite raw at the end of March.”

Their son Francis is also a teacher and daughter Naomi is a clinical researcher.