Published on 7 July 2021
Each year, The Bridge brings you stories of love found on our campus.
Kirsty and Stewart Coole
Stewart made a joke to his friend the night before his first day of PGDE Secondary Education that he would “sit next to the prettiest girl in the room”. Stewart sat next to Kirsty and thus began a friendship which blossomed into a relationship. By January 2019, they were official and began their probation year of teaching, 13o miles apart. “It became clear very quickly that we didn't want to ever be that far apart again”, said Kirsty. They were married on October 11th 2020 just outside Dundee as a “wee nod to the city that brought us together!”
Copyright Rachel and Tonie Photography
Fraser and Margaret Cameron
Fraser and Margaret Cameron met studying Modern History in 1967. Their shared love for travelling and involvement in the European Society, which they helped establish, has given them many life-long friendships from across Europe. In 1969 the University Chaplain mentioned that flats were available for married couples near New Dines Hall for a small rent. “This was perhaps not the most romantic reason to get married”, said Fraser, “but we took the plunge and lo and behold we are still together 52 years after”. Both carried their love for Europe into their careers at EU institutions in Brussels.
Susan and Graham West
Fifer Graham met Dundonian Susan while studying in 1976. Susan was doing her degree in English and Philosophy and Graham was studying Accountancy and Jurisprudence. They were wed two years after graduating in 1980 and 38 years of married life has brought them three children and four grandchildren. Susan had a successful career in teaching at Linlithgow Academy, retiring in 2019 as their Curriculum Principal Teacher in English and Music. Graham spent his career primarily in the automotive industry but has recently shifted to the education sector, working for the past year as a Marketing and Student Recruitment Officer.
Jasper and Beverley Gilder
It was 1976. Jasper, a Geography student, was living in Airlie Hall when Beverley moved into the dorms across the road on Airlie Place and joined his friend’s Bridge School. After drinks at the Airlie Hall Christmas Dinner, they planned the next step. “By midnight we had decided that marriage was the best thing we could do to create a happy joint future”, explained Jasper. “In January we popped into the Postern Gate shop on Nethergate, bought an amethyst engagement ring and announced our engagement on the 14th February. There was a disco and party in the Tav Bar that night where people made a lovely fuss of us.” They were married in August 1978.
Sue and Steve Pearse
Sue met Steve when they were both studying Accountancy. “Steve’s flatmate was a member of the Golf Society, as was I. Steve would tag along sometimes and we also often bumped into each other outside lectures”, said Sue. They started going out and were soon engaged. When Sue got a job offer two years prior to graduation, Steve found a job nearby. “Steve lived with my parents, paying nominal housekeeping, in order to save for a house deposit!” They were married in 1996, with a reception at Copt Heath Golf Club in the West Midlands where Sue has been a member since 1983. They have two sons and celebrated their silver wedding anniversary this year.
Wendy and Ian Sampson
A house party during the swinging sixties brought Wendy and Ian together. “A girl in my digs was going out with Ian’s flatmate, and as we were short of a man for the party we were hosting, we asked Ian to come,” explained Wendy. In June 1962 they were engaged, and they were married in July 1964, the same month of Wendy’s graduation, and have since had successful careers, two daughters and five grandchildren. “There were a number of marriages with backgrounds similar to ours – the students’ union gave ample opportunity to meet. There were about four men to every woman at that time!”
Michael and Susan Day
Michael and Susan will be celebrating 52 years of marriage this year. They met in 1964, their first date in the Co-op’s coffee shop. “I left Dundee in 1968 with a future wife, a degree, friends for life, an appreciation of malt whisky thanks to the Scientific Society and a positive addiction to haggis and bridies - and enough sense to place wife first and degree last!”, reminisces Michael.
Sharida Fakurazi and Dato' Saiful Osman
Sharida never imagined that she would meet the love of her life at Dundee. Dato' Saiful was studying Architecture and they met on their free weekends. “The first time he told me that he loved me was at a cafe in the Wellgate Centre,” shared Sharida. “Not very romantic even then!”. Dato' Saiful returned to Malaysia and Sharida graduated a year later. “He welcomed me home, waiting for me at the airport. I knew he was the one for me! Three months later, we got engaged and we married on the 25 May 1997!” They now have five children and will be celebrating their silver wedding anniversary next year.
Xiaoxiao and James
After moving to Dundee from China in 2016, to study her postgraduate degree in International Business, Xiaoxiao Zhang met the love of her life, James. “I met James at a pub in Dundee called Duke’s Corner. He was sitting with his friends, and when he noticed that we were leaving, I heard him say “are you leaving?” My English wasn’t great at the time, so that was the only sentence I heard. He handed me his business card too – as he ran his own business, I assumed he thought I would be a good potential employee and wanted to hire me. When I contacted him the next day, I realised otherwise!” Being from an Entrepreneurial family, Xiaoxiao’s ambitions were always on business and she dreamed of starting her own business – so their romance blossomed over their common business interests. A few years down the line, they have set-up home together in Dundee now run their business together. They tied the knot in July 2021 - congratulations to the newly weds!
Photo taken by Graeme Wilson Photography https://graemewilsonphotography.com/
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