Cathy Howes, deputy editor

Get to know the girls behind your favourite bridal bible...

Wedding credentials: With several how-to-wed books under her belt, Cathy was no stranger to weddings – apart from her own – until Friends Reunited helped her finally say “I do” to the teenage sweetheart she dated when she was 17!

Dream venue: “Somewhere seriously historic – like Leeds Castle or Hever – with a cloudless sky, a gourmet picnic, barrels of ale, a swing band – and absolutely no disco.”

On-screen inspiration: “Mr Darcy himself, Colin Firth. Not for the wet breeches in Pride & Prejudice, but for the way he shyly flirts with Renée at the blue food dinner party in Bridget Jones. Pure repressed passion!”

Fave aisle anecdote:  “When my mum married my dad in Westminster Cathedral (he used to be an altar boy, so it qualified as his parish!), she was so overwhelmed by the cavernous church, all she remembers of the service is the priest’s odd socks poking through his sandals.”

Words of wisdom: “Don’t be a stranger at your own wedding. Surround yourself with people you love and like to spend time with, not distant acquaintances you think you should invite (or get pressured into asking)."

Little loves: Smiley red gerberas, personalised vows, tear-jerking groom's speech, Van Morrison and a Chevvy 57 with the top down.


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