FIFTEEN happily married Bromsgrove couples stepped up to renew their vows at the weekend to mark the beginning of National Marriage Week.

The renewal ceremony took place at Bromsgrove Methodist Church, presided over by the Rev Christine Holzapfel, and the Rev Richard Wilde with the couples involved sharing a total of 503 years of married life between them.

Two couples had been married for 54 years, and decided it would be a lovely opportunity to renew their promises to one another.

The Rev Wilde said: “This has been a wonderful moment as my wife and I joined all the other husbands and wives in giving thanks for the past all that has gone well as well as difficult times shared. In fact it can be through times of adversity that we realise just how vital our partner is.”

The event was part of a national renewal organised by Care for the Family, which saw more than 1,000 couples renewing their marriage vows and having their wedding rings blessed in front of family and friends.

Each couple repeated the phrase ‘To have and to hold from that day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death us do part’ adding in the name of their partner, before celebrating with music from Grace Church and New Song Churches.

The event was so successful that organisers already have plans for another renewal ceremony next year.