By Lucy Notarantonio
A couple who had to cancel their wedding refused to let the pandemic ruin their big day by having a virtual wedding.
Jonty Williamson, 28, proposed to his beau Beth Deeley, 28, in 2014 and they planned on tying the knot this year on April 4.
The couple, who live in Birmingham, West Mids, were left heartbroken when they were forced to postpone their long awaited wedding due to Covid-19.
But they decided to go ahead with their celebrations even if they couldn’t officially tie the knot – and even managed to get their celebrant to conduct a ceremony on Zoom.
The pair – who were dressed for the occasion – had their first dance with 19 guests – who were also suited and booted – present in their own homes.
They plan on legally getting hitched in September but for now the couple are ‘ecstatic’ with their experience of a virtual wedding.
Beth, who is a volunteer coordinator, said: “We were devastated when we had to postpone our wedding – I cried for days.
“We have been engaged for six years but decided to buy a house before getting married which pushed the wedding back a few years.
“We started planning the wedding in 2018 after I tried on a couple of dresses and found the one!
“In the middle of March, it became apparent that we won’t be able to go ahead with the wedding which broke our hearts – we didn’t want to wait any longer.
“We planned on going to a registry office on April 3 to legally become husband and wife before having a non-religious ceremony the following day with all our family and friends.
“We had booked a teepee with food trucks for our evening guests – it was going to be a festival style wedding.
“It has all my friends and I have spoken about for the past two years – the thought of spending our supposedly special day moping around the house was heart-wrenching.
“We didn’t have to think twice when our celebrant proposed a virtual ceremony – it certainly brightened up our day.”
The couple praise Karen Faulkner, who is a humanist celebrant, for preparing a brand new ceremony with a different script and plenty of Disney references – as requested by the pair.
The couple exchanged promise vows and had their first dance to ‘Can’t help falling in love’ by Elvis in the comfort of their living room.
They were joined by 19 friends and family who wore their fascinators and suits too.
Jonty, who is a manager, adds: “We exchanged promise vows and provisionally lent one another the rings for 24 hours – in preparation for the actual wedding.
“It felt like we were really getting married – we got ready in separate rooms and I couldn’t help but cry when I saw Beth, who looked beautiful in her dress.
“Fortunately, Beth purchased two dresses – one for the registry and the other for the ceremony and party which I am yet to see which will be a lovely surprise on the actual day.”
The couple hope their story encourages other people to make the best out of a bad situation and celebrate their intended big day too – even if it is via webcam.
Beth said: “The ceremony really changed a day which I was so upset about into something we looked forward to and an event people could get out of their pyjamas for.
“I’m even more excited for our postponed wedding date, now we’ve had a taster we can’t wait to do it for real.”