When it comes to love, age and all its woes can just pack its bags and head for the hills, according to a Canvey couple.

Octagenarians Stella Bones and Leon Fievez are so smitten with each other that, despite a combined age of 164, they will tie the knot in a civil ceremony this week.

Mrs Bones, a sprightly 80-year-old who still works part time in a Marie Curie charity shop, will marry Mr Fievez at Southend register office on Saturday.

The former neighbours had lost touch about eight years ago when Mrs Bones moved from her home in Winterswyk Avenue, where Mr Fievez still lives.

But Cupid brought them together again at a pensioners' club at the Salvation Army Farm, in Hadleigh.

The retired dinner lady, who has three daughters, seven grandchildren and a great-grandchild on the way, said: "I divorced 20 years ago.

"I used to know Leon and his wife and used to chat with them.

"I moved away and then Leon's wife died and we didn't see each other until we met in the club.

"We had a few meetings, then he asked me to go on an outing and it went from there.

"We both like travelling and holidays.

"I have chosen my outfit, but I won't say what I'm wearing, as I am keeping it a secret."

A romantic to the core, Mr Fievez, 84, proposed on Valentine's Day this year. The former power plant worker said: "We are really looking forward to the wedding.

"You are never too old. Stella is great company."

The couple will celebrate their wedding with a small family gathering.