NEVILLE and Johanna Dawson will this weekend celebrate 65 years of marriage, and say they wouldn't want to have lived those years anywhere but here in Bathurst.
The pair was married by Monsignor Leo Grant on April 24, 1954 in the Catholic Cathedral of St Michael and St John, making Wednesday their actual anniversary.
But 27 of their closest family members will join them in Bathurst on Saturday for an early celebration at Paddy's Hotel and they count themselves fortunate to be marking the milestone.
"We're very lucky, God's been good to us and kept us together," Mrs Dawson said.
Johanna (Toomey) and Neville Dawson are heavily engaged in the local community, with Mr Dawson receiving 2014's Citizen of the Year and Mrs Dawson a former president of the Catholic Women's League.
They say community involvement and having their own hobbies have been the keys to their long and healthy marriage.
"Be together but have your own interests as well because you can't be together all the time," Mrs Dawson said. "It also gives you something to talk about."
Mr Dawson was born in Bathurst and Mrs Dawson in Blayney, and they've never left. "Bathurst is the best place to be, we wouldn't want to have done it anywhere else," Mr Dawson said.
"It's been so good to us."
Together they brought up their three daughters and a son who have given them nine grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren.
Some of their fondest memories as a couple are from the three dances they'd attend weekly, along with the 10 balls they'd dress to the nines for every year.
"We both loved dancing, we've stopped because the bands aren't there today," Mr Dawson said.
Mr Dawson is a golfer who was named one of Bathurst's Living Legends in 2015 and has been involved with Rotary for 56 years.
Mrs Dawson is a former tennis player and has also been part of the Inner Wheel organisation for 56 years. Together they are heavily involved in the Catholic community.
The full-of-life couple started their own business, Dawson Removals, now run by their son, Peter.
Long-lasting marriages run in the Toomey family with Mrs Dawson's brother recently celebrating his 67th wedding anniversary. But it's not always been easy.
"We've had lots of ups and downs, sadness and joy - that's just life," Mrs Dawson said.