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In a rush for a good luck kiss!

Reporter: KEN BENNETT
Date online: 26 August 2014

A NEWLY-WED couple left more than a hundred guests at their wedding reception so they could revive an ancient tradition.

Minutes after their wedding, Vicky Kelly and husband Richard Sample drove off in a vintage car to meet Saddleworth Morris Men during the rushcart festival.

Then still wearing her wedding dress, Vicky (33) scaled the 15ft ladder on the cart’s rush tower to receive a good luck kiss from cart “jockey”, Adam Walker.

The couple, from Uppermill, received a rapturous welcome when they joined the rushcart procession on its arrival in Dobcross on the traditional tour of Saddleworth villages.

Vicky, a nurse at the Royal Oldham Hospital, said: "Its something I'll never forget. Everyone, particularly the morris men, was absolutely marvellous.

"We'd settled on our wedding at Saddleworth parish church but we knew it was the rushcart festival weekend and we wanted to share it.

"We knew having the rushcart at a wedding was an ancient local custom and seen as a good luck charm.

"But as the timing of the wedding didn’t coincide with the morris men's schedule, we decided to join them."

She and her policeman husband Richard (37), received the best wishes of the dancers and crowd before heading back to Uppemill Civic Hall for their wedding reception.

Ed Worrall, Saddleworth Morris Men's secretary, said: "The bride got in touch through St Chad’s Church to see if a picture with the rushcart was possible. I passed on the timings and they turned up!

"Traditionally the bride should kiss the jockey for luck, and since he isn't allowed off the rushcart at Dobcross, Vicky climbed the ladder."

 

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