Wickford Flood wedding - the Italian perspective.

The Italian Connection

The Italian press imagined Wickford to be an old town with ornate old buildings.

The story of the flood obviously caught the imagination, not just of the national press, but the international press as well!

The Italian press published an article and a full page colour illustration showing four young men swimming towards a church (St. Peter’s Catholic Church, London Road!!) with a wedding gown held over their heads and a young women being helped through the doors by a priest.

The caption underneath, loosely translated, said, “In Wickford, Essex, England, they should have celebrated the marriage, but the preceeding night a violent storm hit the village and so much rain fell that it formed a deep lake around the church.  They did not have boats.  The young affianced decided to still go ahead with the marriage.  They put on their swimming costumes and swam to the church.  The groom, the brother and the witnesses carried the bride’s dress.  When they got to the church, the groom had to borrow a pair of trousers.  The nuptials ended happily”.

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  • This article referred to the marriage of Maureen Marsh-Fieley. I do not know her married name but I understood that both she and her husband had French parentage and spoke the language. It was natural that they spend their honeymoon in France but it was a bit of an anticlimax because as soon as they settled into their French hotel the Gendarmerie knocked on their door and took the bridegroom off to do his national service! He had dual French/British nationality and was therefore liable for it. Last time I saw Maureen was in about 1961/2 when she was walking along the High Street with her husband and new-born baby son.

    By Denis Mitcheson (26/08/2013)

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