Countess Mountbatten Hospice Charity “Brides in the Aisles 2015” event was held at the Haskins Garden Centre on Sunday 10th May 2015.
It was the CMHC’s second attempt at a Guinness World Record for the number of “brides” in one place.
For the purpose of the record attempt “bride” equals wedding dress and head dress – i.e. veil, tiara, fascinator or similar.
“Dress” also included traditional dress from other cultures so the lady in the stunning ruby red and gold salwar kameez and shawl and the lady in the Hawaiian outfit were valid entrants.
So were the blokes in dresses! All credit to the several burly lads who wore dresses and tiaras, some laced in with extra-strength elastic at the back, others fitting surprisingly well into their outfits.
A word on accessories though guys, – a white and burgundy dress with neon orange trainers? Really, no!
We had quite a few younger ladies in bridesmaid and confirmation dresses and several family entries including one family with 9 members over 4 generations (the youngest, all in white carried in her grandmothers arms!)
Richard passed away in the Hospice at the age of 45 and his family wished to demystify the idea of Hospices being sad places. They found it “a lovely place, with happy nurses and doctors providing care and support for not just Richard, but the rest of our family and friends too.”
Rich’s Angels are a fund-raising group who attended the BITA event in his memory, with a fund-raising page at fund-raising page, and have inspired a second group, Rich’s Little Angels, who are also fund-raising.
The only entrant turned away was a beautifully dressed dog accompanying her owner, who was refused because “you can’t marry a dog!”
I was there to help with marshalling the event (as well as entering) as Team Leader Orange by helping to escort the brides through registration and into the restaurant area where they were sat in colour coded areas before the first count was taken.
What did I wear?
My dress was an Oxfam (from their bridal suite in Shirley) special as I didn’t quite fit into my wedding dress after 38 years and 2 kids! Asda also gave a £20 gift card to the charity to help with running costs.
Encouraged by the splendidly garbed MC we all paraded out of the restaurant in our teams then came back in past the counters. We then posed for a group photo only to be told by Zoe Hanson from Heart FM who was there with her daughter that we didn’t have enough Brides to make the record attempt, we had 230+ brides but the record stands at 748.
After a dance off competition we all went home and packed away our dresses. Maybe next year?
Each entrant paid £10 to enter and have a glass of bubbly and a call to Ruth at their fund-raising office confirms that the charity has netted at least £5,000 from the night.