After over six decades of marriage, George and Joyce Bell, both in their eighties, faced a heartbreaking separation when ill health landed them in hospital. For 100 days, they were apart, each battling their own health challenges.

Finally, after their recovery, they were reunited at Tollesby Hall Care Home in Middlesbrough. Last week, in a heartwarming moment captured on camera, Joyce, who had overcome a broken hip, was brought downstairs to reunite with her husband George.

Before, Joyce had mentioned to George that she wouldn’t accompany him if he ever had to move into a care facility. However, when she was discharged from James Cook University Hospital to Tollesby Hall Care Home and learned that George would soon join her, she was overjoyed.

She expressed her excitement to the staff, saying she couldn’t sleep from the anticipation and felt as though she were a young girl again.

Joyce, aged 87, and George, aged 89, both hail from Middlesbrough. They grew up on the same street, living next door but one from each other.

George was known for his playful nature, often playing tricks on people, but he was also incredibly helpful and willing to assist anyone in need.

The couple tied the knot 66 years ago when Joyce was 21 and George was 23 at St Cuthbert’s Church on Newport Road, which no longer stands.

When asked about the secret to their enduring marriage, Joyce humorously remarked, “Let them have their way and put your foot down, you have to with George.”

Following his National Service early in their marriage, George pursued a career as an electrician, specializing in armature winding, a job he thoroughly enjoyed. As a hobby, he crafted life-size models of engines.

Joyce had a unique career as a mobile window dresser, traveling to various towns in the area to create captivating displays. Even at 65, she was reluctant to retire because she found immense joy in her work.

For their Ruby wedding anniversary, George surprised Joyce with a stunning ring, a cherished memento of their enduring love.

Before their hospitalization at James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough last June, they resided in a bungalow in Marton. Joyce made George promise that if he ever needed to move to a care home, she wouldn’t join him. However, now that they are both at Tollesby Hall Care Home for recovery, they are grateful for the attentive care they receive.

Despite Joyce’s broken hip, she is recuperating well, and the staff ensure she can visit George downstairs every day. Rachel White, the activities coordinator at Tollesby Hall Care Home, praised the team’s effort in reuniting the couple and providing them with exceptional care.