CRASHING waves and a hurricane-force gale greeted a couple who chose to get married on Valentine's Day.
Bride and groom Angie and Ben Sammut had to weather the storm – on Ferocious Friday – for their wedding in South East Cornwall.
As the couple took their vows in Cawsand Congregational Church, the wind howled outside and huge waves were crashing up over the seawalls below.
Angie said that because of the narrowness of the street, she had to walk to the church up the hill from the Cawsand Bay Hotel where the reception was to be held.
Father of the bride Mal Girling, from Torpoint, said: 'Angie was hanging on to my arm for dear life, walking as quickly as she could in heels, with her wedding dress bunched up around her, and holding on to her hair and her flowers.
'But we were lucky, as in that five to 10 minutes just before the ceremony at 4pm, the rain stopped. She managed to arrive looking beautiful and glowing. But by the time we came out of the church, it was lashing down with rain again, and as it was now high tide, the storm was at its peak. It was horrendous.'
After the ceremony, the guests, along with Angie's mum Izzy Girling, and the groom's parents Mark and Joy Sammut, all had to get back down to the hotel. By this time the waves were crashing over their cars outside and over the hotel wall.
One of the groom's two sons, four-year-old Austin, was standing on the hotel balcony when a wave caught him. Soaked to the skin, he had to change out of his pageboy's outfit. Two of the guests who went to his aid were also soaked.
Angie said: 'The weather may have been terrible and I may have got a bit wet and bedraggled but to me it was a beautiful, crazy, random, unpredictable and memorable day. All our guests had a great time storm watching and said it was one of the most enjoyable weddings they had ever been to.
'The Rev Jill Murray who married us also helped to make the day romantic by presenting us with a wooden heart after the ceremony. The aisle was scattered with red hearts, and because the storm had made everything so dark, the church was lit with lanterns and candles.'
For Ben and Angie their wedding day lasted for only 16 hours. They are both corporals in the RAF and each had to separately report back for duty the next day. They met while on tour in Cyprus two years ago and are hoping to get a joint posting so they can be together.