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A man who beat his wife through their 37 year marriage has spoken of how anger-management has saved their relationship

Couple speak out to encourage others in abusive relationships to seek help Photo:

A man who beat his wife throughout their 37 year marriage has spoken of how anger-anagement therapy has changed him.

He says it helped him to conquer his temper - and saved their relationship. His wife was told by her daughters to leave him because the violence was so frequent.

The couple want to remain anonymous but are speaking out to encourage others in abusive relationships to seek help.

The husband said "I would get very angry and jump out of my seat and make a lunge for her. Or if we were in bed I would push her out of bed. It's very hard to listen and not feel a sense of guilt and shame."

His wife added "I just remember him punching very hard and fast and I just thought, that's it."

Violence had always been part of the marriage until 18 months ago when he embarked on a course run by the charity Relate which he believes changed their lives.

The former abuser said "I suppose if I hadn't been pushed I may have carried on but thankfully I did something about it and it's transformed our lives."

Greater Manchester Police are using their story to show others they can put an end to abuse. More than 64,000 incidents of domestic abuse were reported in the area over the last year.

It comes as the force was granted permission to extend their use of Domestic Violence Protection orders.

The orders will allow police to ban abusers from their homes for up to 28 days. Officers can act if they suspect abuse, even if there's not enough evidence to charge a suspect.

The orders have been piloted in 6 areas of Greater Manchester over the last 12 months.

In that time 184 orders have been issued. Deemed so effective the force can now grant orders across the whole of Greater Manchester.

Detective Superintendent Phil Owen commented "If you're suffering domestic abuse you're in two minds about contacting the police because you don't want to criminalise your partner, so clearly this is an added layer of protection."