Best man appeal from Romford Old Boy

A FORMER Havering pupil is taking his wife on a nostalgic 3,600-mile roundtrip for a special diamond anniversary class reunion.

And this week, John Waller issued an urgent appeal to the person he most wants to see – buddy John O’Connell who was best man at his wedding to Margaret 49 years ago.

This year’s bash is the fifth and final mass gathering of the boys who joined the Royal Liberty School, in Upper Brentwood Road, Romford, as wide-eyed 11-year-olds in 1951.

Remarkably, the organising group has found all but 28 of the 126 pupils in their year, and are counting on a huge turn-out of Old Boys and wives at the party – to be held in the school hall in September.

The Wallers, now living in Tenerife where John ran a cycle business, are among three first-timers booked in.

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Incredibly, Mike Fruin, formerly of Collier Row, and the Rev Peter Nunn, once of Romford, will be flying in with their wives from Tasmania.

“If this is to be our last big get-together,” said organiser Mike Rendell, “we want to give all the lads and their ladies a day to remember.”

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For the Wallers, that could mean a personal reunion with their best man.

“It would be the ideal kick-start to our golden wedding celebrations next year,” John said. “John is, however, proving an elusive target.”

“John was a popular guy,” said co-organiser John Morris. “We’ve been looking for him for ten years or more. We’ve found a few people of the same name, but we can’t pin him down.”

Anyone who can help can call: 01245 259480, or e-mail:

Other absentees include: John Anderson, George Cooke, Harry Cornish, Ray Fuller, Mike Green, Mike McGregor, Gordon Owen, John Watson and Mike Zetter.

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