A WEDDING with a difference took place at a parish church in York, writes Fran Rankin.

Seven-year-old Freddie Wilson “married” Phillipa Cranmer, six, at St Mary’s Church in Haxby in front of a congregation of more than 100 classmates and parents from Headlands Primary School yesterday.

Phillipa was given away by her “father”, fellow classmate Oliver Sadler, also aged six, and St Mary’s vicar, the Rev Ron Smith, officiated.

The wedding took place as part of a school project on people, places and parties.

Deputy head Louise Pearce said: “There’s no better party than a wedding. The children planned the event themselves by writing to Rev Ron to book the church, designing the invitations, sewing their own felt buttonholes and writing vows to make to each other.

"All the guests arrived in their finest clothes and took their seats in the pews while the groom waited at the front for his bride, who walked down the aisle to the Bridal March.”

Rev Smith said: “I’ve celebrated dozens of weddings in my 20 years as a priest. As you get older, the brides and grooms seem to get younger and younger. But not usually as young as this.

“The ceremony went well, the children were very attentive and that they enjoyed the experience of seeing how a wedding is done.”

The rest of the day was spent continuing the celebrations back at school with a small reception, a disco and the cutting of a wedding cake.