It was not just church bells ringing out in Melksham at the weekend, as fire sirens heralded the celebrations for one pair of newlyweds.
Melksham firefighter Peter Quadling surprised his bride Alvina after their wedding by organising for a vintage fire engine to take them to their reception on Saturday. The Melksham couple travelled from Devizes Register Office to The Farmhouse in Southwick in a fully operational 1952 F12 Dennis Fire Engine, decorated for the occasion.
Mrs Quadling said: “Peter is a retained firefighter and has a love of old engines, but that was a lovely surprise. “I wasn’t expecting it, but I knew he would do something like that.” The groom’s passion for classic fire engines has played a large part in their relationship. He proposed atop an engine at the Melksham Carnival three years ago.
The couple, who were childhood friends in Melksham 30 years ago, were accompanied on the engine by their children. Mr Quadling’s daughters Jade, Amber and Cerise were their bridesmaids, along with Mrs Quadling’s niece Megan. Her son Ashley gave her away and his younger brother Jordan delivered the rings The engine was driven by a colleague of Mr Quadling’s from Trowbridge Fire Station, who volunteered to take the family to the reception. The tender – borrowed from a collector from Swindon – was in service until the 1970s and is still in working order. The new Mr and Mrs Quadling held an afternoon reception at The Farmhouse, followed by an evening reception at Melksham Conservative Club. They will honeymoon on a cruise around the western Mediterranean.
Mrs Quadling said: “We would both like to thank all our friends and family that helped make this day extra special.”