Diss Express helps north Suffolk college mates reunite

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Friends who had long since fallen out of touch have been reunited thanks in part to a letter placed in the Diss Express.

Mike Barker, formerly of Hoxne Police Station in the 1950s, where his father Ron was the village bobby, is now set to meet up with his college mates of the 1960s, travelling from his home near Honiton, Devon.

His pals had been trying to find him for six years, but luckily Mr Barker’s sister Sandra, who lives in Thwaite, spotted the letter in the Diss Express and alerted him.

The appeal was put in by Jeff Lowe, who was Mr Barker’s former tutor in woodworking at Bishop Otter College in Chichester, Sussex.

Mr Barker said: “Over the years I lost contact with my group – as happens.

“Meanwhile they enjoyed a 50th anniversary get-together in 2011 and another in 2013, neither of which I was party to as I was the one nobody could trace. Posters, notices stuck on trees and left in pubs in and around Diss bore no fruit until just recently when not one but two contacts were made.

“My sister Sandra Powell who lives in Thwaite received a letter from one of my group to pass on to me and less than a week later the advert from my lecturer at college, Jeff Lowe appeared in the Diss Express – so two for the price of one almost!”

The group is now set for a reunion in the Cotswolds.