Belfast Telegraph

Friday 6 March 2015

Miranda helps couple tie the knot

Miranda Hart, practices with the London Community Gospel Choir in Soho as she plans a wedding for Comic Relief
Miranda Hart, practices with the London Community Gospel Choir in Soho as she plans a wedding for Comic Relief

Comedy actress Miranda Hart turned wedding planner as she was challenged with putting together a real-life marriage ceremony in a matter of hours.

The Call The Midwife star was given the task as part of her week of Comic Relief efforts which have seen her put together a dog show and perform a Strictly Come Dancing routine.

She called on the support of several star names after only finding out this morning that she was in charge of planning the wedding of Claire Gilchrist, 26, and fiance Ben Springett, 28, at Old Marylebone Town Hall in central London.

The bride and her father were driven to the venue by Top Gear's The Stig, where they were met by Harry Judd and Tom Fletcher from boyband McFly. Comedy due Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders were bridesmaids, wearing frilly meringue dresses.

Hart played a key role throughout the ceremony. She read the lyrics from the Spice Girls track 2 Become 1 with Four Weddings And A Funeral actor Simon Callow, and played Is This The Way To Amarillo on the piano with musician Jonathan Cohen.

Heather Small and the London Gospel Choir joined Hart for a rendition of Proud, Fletcher performed It's All About You and West End star Michael Ball sang All I Ask Of You from Phantom Of The Opera.

After the wedding passed off smoothly, a relieved Hart said: "The pressure was on but it was about Claire and Ben. I was determined to do the best I could so I got Michael Ball and the McFly boys and all these surprises for them to add to the occasion. I'm so thrilled."

The bride, from Maidstone, Kent, explained her decision to dedicate her big day to Comic Relief. She said: "We always wanted to get married and we thought why not, it can help raise a lot of money for a really good cause.

She added: "Miranda's been amazing all week. We just knew she was going to do what she could."

The new Mrs Springett said her biggest worry was when she was told she could only wear her chosen wedding dress if enough money had been raised. "The main fear the fact that I might not have been able to wear the dress, so I can't thank people enough for donating and getting me my dream dress," she said. "They had to raise £50,000 by 4pm and I think by that time that had raised £115,000 so they completely surpassed what they needed to and took me by surprise."

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