“There’s still a wild physical attraction between us!” Pensioner, 74, and her 36-year-old toyboy husband defy critics to renew their wedding vows
When Edna and Simon Martin got married in 2005, many doubted their relationship would go the distance.
Edna was 70 and Simon was just 32. But the happy couple have not allowed the 38-year age gap to hold them back – quite the contrary. The very much in love pair have just renewed their wedding vows at home in Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset.
“When we got together, Simon said that ifhe could have just one year with me, it would be worth it,” says Edna. “Now we’ve done six, and before I go galloping off into senility, we wanted to celebrate!”
We do: Edna, 76, and Simon Martin, 38, renew their wedding vows at home in Weston-super-Mare in front of their beloved organ
Edna and Simon”s union caused national outrage when they first got together.
She was portrayed as a predatory granny, while Simon was depicted as a naive virgin who dabbled in cross-dressing.
But they were clearly the perfect match and are more in love than ever – as demonstrated by their Christmas-themed second wedding.
Edna wore the same purple dress that she wore at their first wedding – and wiped away a tear as they said their vows in unison.
Loving pair: The couple had a Christmas-themed ceremony, and Edna wore the same purple dress she wore to their wedding six years ago
Simon – a musical genius – played a rousing rendition of Abba”s Mamma Mia on an old organ he has lovingly restored since moving in with his wife.
Thewedding may not have been as raucous as your average nuptials – but it was a perfect demonstration of a love that is still just as strong as when the couple first “collided” at an organ concert at the Odeon in Weston in 2003.
It was love at first sight, an instant recognition that they had found their “other half”.
After renewing their vows, the pair told Closer magazine about how their relationship has changed.
“Our relationship is deeper now,” says Edna. “We’re stronger together. And there’s still a wild physical attraction between us,” she giggles.
Simon adds: “Before I met Edna I was withdrawn and had no friends. She’s taught me what life is all about andI’m rampant for her.”
Six year timewarp: Edna and Simon at their first wedding in 2005
The couple laugh off questions about whether their relationship is more romantic than physical.
“Good God, no,” says Edna, licking Simon”s nose. “Our relationship has the same passion as a pair of 25-year-olds. We kiss about 150 times a day.
“We hold hands all the time – we even sleep holding hands.”
“Yes, we”re still crazy about one another,” confirms Simon, as Edna pats his bottom.
Any suggestions that Edna is more of amother than a lover to Simon are met with disbelief. “If I was his mother, I’d be arrested!” she laughs.
Asked if they still make love every day, the couple smile at each other and nod. “Age doesn’t stop you requiring sex,” says Simon. “Everyone has needs.”
When the couple met, Simon was a loner who had never had a girlfriend and still lived with his parents.
His astonishing musicality impressed far and wide, but it was his cross dressing which later made headlines.
Edna said: “If he wants to dress up in a green caterpillar suit with pink flip flops what does it matterI don”t give a monkey”s.
Made for each other: The pair had both lived very different lives before they met each other. Edna had been married for 37 years, and Simon lived as a recluse with his parents
“He lived with his parents for 30 years and did the teenage thing when he was 25 and developed much later.He was totally isolated.”
Edna was the result of an affair her mother had with a local charmer in Somerset, a coal miner who married five times and had seven families.
She was a bit of a tomboy and after grammar school studied engineering at Stroud Technical College in Gloucestershire, working as a civil engineer until retiring in her 60s.
Edna was divorced from her husband of 37 years (they married 20 years before Simon was born). She had four children with him, one of whom, a daughter called Wilma, died aged 13 from Wilson”s disease, another, a son, disappeared years ago following a family squabble.
After her divorce, Edna had a relationship with another toyboy, a milkman 16 years her junior – younger men chase her, she says, what can she do – but he died of cancer five years before she met Simon.
It was love at first sight.
“Eddy was arevelation,” says Simon. “We laughed and laughed and laughed. Others may have noticed the age gap, but we certainly didn”t. And she was very glamorous, too.”
Edna found Simon equally irresistible, but the 39-year age gap stood in their way.
For one thing, Simon didn”t know how his parents, who were younger than Edna, would take the news he”d fallenin love with a 70-year-old granny.
Inspiration: The couple first “collided” at an organ concert at the Odeon in Weston in 2003. Music still plays a large part in their lives
Edna felt the right thing to do would be to let Simon meet a girl his own age.
They were torn by angst and longing. But one day in January 2005 Simon made up his mind.
He wrote Edna a love letter declaring himself, then took the train to Weston. The rest, as they say, is history and the couple were married at Weston-super-Mare register office in July that year.
Their tale is an inspiration for anyone worrying about taking the plunge.
Edna says: “Every night I go to sleep lying on Simon’s shoulder and we wake up holding hands. We’re madly in love. Being married to Simon is magical.”
READ THE INTERVIEW IN FULL IN THIS WEEK”S CHRISTMAS ISSUE OF CLOSER MAGAZINE, ON NEWSSTANDS NOW.