St Paul's Wedding To Go Ahead Despite Continuing 'Occupy' Protests
It may not be a picture-perfect wedding but one bride-to-be has put on a brave face and will walk down the aisle at St Paul's Cathedral despite the unsightly encampment at the foot of its magnificent steps.
The historic monument was forced to close on Friday for the first time since the Second World War amid fears that anti-capitalist protesters on its doorstep posed a risk to health and safety.
But Natasha Ighodaro and fiance Nick Cunningham will marry as planned - to the backdrop of dozens of tents and a banner reading "capitalism is crisis".
The pair sent a message to their wedding guests to assure them the ceremony would go ahead.
The note, posted on Facebook, read: "We're looking forward to seeing friends and family at the wedding today, and are pleased that it is going ahead as planned. love Nick Cunningham and Natasha Ighodaro xxx".
This followed an upbeat message on Friday which stated: "For anyone who is worried about tomorrow - don't be. The recent announcement doesn't affect us; it just means that we have run of the house :) xxxx."
With hundreds of demonstrators expected to descend on the place of worship, the couple have had to amend their plans.
Rather than using the cathedral's grand entrance, University of York graduate Miss Ighodaro, an account manager for a PR company, will slip in through a side door.
The decision to shut the monument came after activists, who have occupied a makeshift campsite outside the main entrance since last Saturday, refused to comply with requests to move on.
The Dean of St Paul's, the Rev Graeme Knowles, said the drastic step was necessary because independent health and safety and fire officers had identified unknown quantities of flammable liquids, along with smoking and drinking in tented areas, which compromised fire exits.