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Dagenham couple relive wedding day – with groom’s original tie

PUBLISHED: 13:00 17 February 2016 | UPDATED: 15:43 17 February 2016

Brian and Sharon Devlin at St Cedds church in Dagenham

Brian and Sharon Devlin at St Cedds church in Dagenham

Archant

A wedding cake, roses and half a dozen smitten couples were part of a Valentine’s Day full of love and remembrance.

Sharon and Brian Devlin on their wedding day in 1970Sharon and Brian Devlin on their wedding day in 1970

Married members of the congregation at St Cedd’s Church, in Lodge Avenue, Dagenham, were given the chance to reaffirm their devotion to each other – and one couple even re-enacted their whole wedding.

“It was nice for everybody,” Sharon Devlin, 65, who relived her 1970 ceremony with husband Barry, said. “It didn’t compare to the original, but it was lovely and lighthearted.”

Barry, 67, nearly awed churchgoers by attending the service in the suit he wore 46 years ago – but it was not to be.

“Everything more or less still fit,” he said. “I could get into it. But then when I went to zip up the fly, it just fell apart in my hands.”

Brian and Sharon Devlin renew their vows at the churchBrian and Sharon Devlin renew their vows at the church

Barry did, however, wear the same tie – and ducked his wife’s wrath.

“He hasn’t put an ounce of weight on,” she said. “I hate him. He hasn’t aged at all – except for his silver hair.”

Also taking part was church curate Rev Ruth Dowley, 69, who renewed her vows with husband Terry, 66.

“We’ve done it once before, but this time was with lots of other people and it felt different,” she said.

Brian and Sharon DevlinBrian and Sharon Devlin

“The environment of a place changes everything – and it was lovely, with all the heart-shaped balloons.

“The whole day was a celebration of love – between men and women, but also between God and humans.”

For the vicar of St Cedd’s, the Rev Tony Rablen, the day was a first – and a lucky coincidence.

“We only did it as Valentine’s Day fell on a Sunday,” he said.

Terry and the Rev Ruth Dowley in 1972, who renewed their marriage vows at St Cedd'sTerry and the Rev Ruth Dowley in 1972, who renewed their marriage vows at St Cedd's

“Traditionally Saint Valentine is one of our weakest saints – there’s not much going for him – but it was a great excuse for a celebration of love.”


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