Bungay mayor marries

JOHN Groom became the first mayor of Bungay to marry while in office when he wed his long-term partner Jayne Niblett on Saturday.Their marriage at Mettingham Church brought a big bonus for the East Anglian Air Ambulance - the couple asked for donations to that vital cause in lieu of presents and that brought in a remarkable �2,500 from a celebration party attended by 230 guests at Hales Barn the following day.

JOHN Groom became the first mayor of Bungay to marry while in office when he wed his long-term partner Jayne Niblett on Saturday.

Their marriage at Mettingham Church brought a big bonus for the East Anglian Air Ambulance - the couple asked for donations to that vital cause in lieu of presents and that brought in a remarkable �2,500 from a celebration party attended by 230 guests at Hales Barn the following day.

It was the first time that the air ambulance had benefited entirely from a wedding in that way. The happy day also had the nice twist of Jayne going into the church as the bride and coming out as a Groom!

Mr Groom is in his second year as mayor of Bungay. He runs his butcher's business in Wingfield Street, and he and Jayne run John Groom's Catering and Carriages - which catered for Sunday's event. As well as being a Bungay town councillor he is also on Waveney District Council.


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The couple got engaged at Christmas and had been planning the wedding since then.

Jayne said: “This time last year I had to go into hospital at the time John had his 60th birthday, so we didn't get the chance to celebrate it. I was 60 this year.”

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John added: “We decided to have a party to celebrate both those birthdays, my 45 years in the butchery trade and 25 years running the shop in Bungay.”

That was all many of those at Sunday's party knew. But the couple started planning their wedding immediately they were engaged, had a small reception at their home on Saturday after the service - and announced it to the delighted gathering the next day, when the Rev Ian Byrne, who took the service, did a blessing.

Mr Groom added: “When I spoke to the air ambulance they said no one previously had dedicated their entire wedding to them, and to help that the Reads (who own the historic barn) donated it free, for which we are very grateful.”

The couple have been together 12 years. At the wedding, Malcolm Davey was best man, and Wendy Farrer was the bride's matron of honour. The bride wore a brocade top with a cream and silver taupe ensemble, and carried a bouquet of cream roses.

As well as the meal on Sunday - catering by John Groom Catering and Carriages - the afternoon included a cabaret with a magician and a jazz quartet. The bride's brother, Mike Hague, travelled from Seoul in South Korea to give his sister away, and Mr Groomdaughter, Victoria Groom, travelled from Australia to act as a witness.

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