A COUPLE’S wedding day will always be twinned with tragedy as on the day they got married killer floods swept through Canvey.
Sixty years ago today Peggy and Charlie Smith, of Castle Lane, Hadleigh, were walking up the aisle at Rayleigh Church, while just a few miles away people were trying to survive the floods on Canvey.
Peggy, 79, said they knew the weather was wild that day, but that they never knew what was happening just down the road until after the church service.
She said: “We look back now and think ‘we’re still here’ but other people lost their lives. It’s a day we remember obviously because of the wedding, but the floods too.
“You think how lucky you are now, but on the day we tried to block it out. When we came out of the reception it was terrible.
“Everyone was talking about the weather and how bad the flooding was.”
Part of their wedding plans would have been scuppered anyway if they hadn’t travelled to Canvey to pick up the cake the night before the floods hit.
Peggy and Charlie, now 83, made the journey to Canvey to collect the traditional fruit cake, complete with marzipan and icing, ready for their reception on January 31.
They had to pick it up from the island because the woman who made it, who worked at a London bakery, lived there.