• Thu. Jun 20th, 2024

North East Connected

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Scots and English unite at Hadrian’s Wall

A wall, built by the Romans to protect England from the ‘barbarian’ Scots, has brought the two nations together – and will form the focal point at a North East wedding.

Newcastle University students Stuart Brown and Fran Lalor fell in love while taking part in an archaeological dig at Hadrian’s Wall – and now the two are preparing to tie the knot next to a giant model of the structure.

The couple, who now live in Manchester, will travel north for their wedding at Newcastle’s Great North Museum:Hancock, where they will exchange their vows facing a 1:4700 scale model of the 73-mile long wall, built to serve as the northern frontier of the mighty Roman Empire.

And Stuart, a 27-year-old web analyst, whose mother’s family are from Scotland, will wear his kilt for the ceremony, which will be attended by around 15 close family members and friends, in November.

The pair met while taking part in a two week dig at the wall’s Birdoswald fort during a summer break in their Ancient History and Archaeology honours degree course at Newcastle University, “so it really means a lot to us,” said civil servant Fran, 27.

“We have great memories of studying in Newcastle and, of course, of the Wall, so it’s great to be holding our wedding in a venue which unites those two places.”

The Great North Museum’s interactive model of the Wall, its forts and milecastles, forms the centrepiece of a gallery packed with archaeological finds.

“It also houses the gold Aemelia Ring, believed to be one of the earliest Christian artefacts found in Britain,” said Joanne Everett, events co-ordinator for Sodexo Prestige Venues & Events, which manages catering and events at the museum.

“So, there is a romantic symbolism, which makes a wedding here very special indeed.”

The happy couple are postponing their honeymoon to next year when they plan to go on safari and scuba dive in Tanzania.

“But first we’re going on a mini-moon in Northumberland,” said Fran, “and top of our to do list is to walk Hadrian’s Wall.”

For further information about holding weddings at Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums’ venues, call 0844 856 1074, e-mail events@twmuseums.co.uk or visit www.prestigevenuesandevents.sodexo.com.

By Emily