THE vicar is an important part of any wedding.
But that was even more true for the Reverend Chris Collison, who conducted the marriage of his daughter, Sarah Anne-Marie, at the weekend.
The reverend of St Hilda’s Church on the Headland, proudly gave away Sarah, 25, to husband-to-be Andrew Shipley, 20.
He then quickly changed into his robes to carry out the rest of the service.
Rev Collison said: “It was a great privilege taking my daughter’s vows as well as walking her up the aisle.
“When the first hymn started, I then went into the vestry and put my robes on and came back out again and took the wedding.
“It was a glorious day, absolutely wonderful. The weather was beautiful, there were lots and lots of friends and family from all over the country.
Rev Collison had to switch places at another important point during the ceremony.
He explained: “At the point where somebody says ‘who gives this woman to be married to this man’ I stood down next to Sarah again to give her hand over to Andrew.
“My colleague Verity Brown said those words then I went back and took the vows myself. Everything went like clockwork, and it was just a wonderful celebration of God’s love.”
The celebrations lasted well into the night at Hardwick Hall hotel, in Sedgefield, and the happy couple will honeymoon in Morocco.
Sarah Anne-Marie, a nursery practitioner, said she did not have to think twice about asking her dad to perform the ceremony.
She and husband Andrew, 20, who works for the police, live in Garforth, in Leeds.
Sarah said earlier: “I’ve always wanted my dad to walk me down the aisle then carry out the service as the vicar.
Mum Anne Collison added it had been a “perfect day”.
She said: “Everything went smoothly. I don’t think any of us stopped beaming all day.”