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Wednesday, 17 December 2014

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Former Barrow dad marries own daughter

A WELL-KNOWN former Barrow vicar has presided over the marriage of his own daughter.

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PROUD Father Mark Edwards, right, with his daughter Fiona Edwards and her husband Matthew Ng after performing their marriage ceremony

Father Mark Edwards MBE served at St Mary’s Church in Ulverston, St John’s on Barrow Island and St Francis in Ormsgill for more than 10 years as well as volunteering for Duddon Inshore Rescue from 2003 to 2008.

Father Mark, as he is affectionately known, reluctantly moved to the North East in 2008 after his licence was not renewed by the Bishop of Carlisle, and has served as a vicar in Newcastle and Chaplain to Northumbria police since.

In 2010 he was awarded the MBE for services to Barrow and has also been awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for services as an emergency first responder.

But last weekend, Father Mark carried out his most memorable achievement yet – conducting the wedding service for his own daughter – Fiona Edwards, a former Parkview School pupil.

Fiona and her now husband, Matthew Ng married at St Matthew’s Church in Dinnington near Newcastle, under the watchful eye of the bride’s father.

She met her husband, whose family is originally from Hong Kong but are now settled in South Shields, in the Newcastle Christian Life Centre. They announced their engagement last April. The couple will honeymoon in Thailand for two weeks before returning to their home in Wallsend.

“It was an extremely emotional time and at times also stressful,” Father Mark told the Evening Mail, while admitting he shed a few tears the night before but retained his composure throughout the service.

“I have married many couples during my ministry but this is the first wedding I have stressed over and have been slightly nervous about.

“I now have more empathy for other couples presenting themselves for marriage!

“It was difficult at times not to feel overwhelmed by my emotions. I was marrying my daughter and she was leaving the vicarage for the last time on the morning of her wedding.”

  • See the Celebrations section in Saturday’s Evening Mail for a full wedding report and more pictures.

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