The only neigh to tie the knot

Amanda and Darren Howe in their carriage
Amanda and Darren Howe in their carriage

HISTORY repeated itself for a newly-wed couple at the weekend when they recreated an element of the bride’s parents’ wedding day.

Amanda and Darren Howe were married at St George’s United Reformed Church, in York Road, Hartlepool, on Saturday.

Amanda, whose maiden name is Butler, arrived in style in a horse-drawn carriage - just as her mum Jeanette Butler (nee Filby) did 30 years ago when she married Amanda’s dad, Ian.

The new bride left the church with her husband in the carriage, which was pulled by a smart black horse, called Gordon, which is kept at her dad’s Stag Transport firm, in Mainsforth Terrace.

Jeanette and Ian, from the West Park area, were also transported from church in a carriage after their own wedding, at St Aidan’s Church, on August 21, 1982, as featured in the Mail at the time.

The couple, whose carriage was provided by Russell Jackson, will celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary this year.

Amanda, who works for her 27-year-old brother Philip Butler’s firm, Butler’s Home and Garden, in Stockton’s Portrack Lane, met Darren six years ago when they both worked at Housing Hartlepool.

She was a finance assistant and Darren still works there as a gas fitter.

Darren, whose parents Evelyn and Arthur Howe live in West View, proposed at the lock gates at Hartlepool Marina on the couple’s fifth anniversary of being together.

Amanda, from the Foggy Furze area, said: “We just thought it would be nice to have this, like my mum and dad did.

“I have seen wedding pictures from their photo album and it was a nice thing to see.

“We thought it would be really memorable.”

Jeanette, 48, said: “I think it was lovely that they also had a horse and carriage.

“My husband is a horsey person so it was something he wanted to do. It was something different.”

Amanda and Darren’s chief bridesmaid was Cara Nossiter, 25, with bridesmaids Natalie Stabler, 25, and Darren’s daughter Lexie Howe, 10, and 10-year-old Beth Henderson.

The best man was Kevin Hall, and the usher was Amanda’s brother Philip.

They had a reception at the Grand Hotel, in Swainson Street, with 88 day-time guests and 140 evening guests.

The couple are now set for a honeymoon in Mexico.

Their open-top horse and carriage was provided by Hartlepool-based Dream Day carriages.