THE fifth smallest church in regular use in England hosted one of the country's first weddings after the easing of lockdown.

Lucy Winterton and Ben McClean walked the few paces down the aisle of St Michael's, Raddington, near Wiveliscombe, on Saturday.

They had feared they would be among the hundreds of couples forced to postpone their big day due to the Covid-19 crisis.

But the Government softened the measures just in time for Lucy and Ben to tie the knot in front of their families and a handful of friends.

The wedding party set out across the fields in wellies for the ceremony conducted by the rector, the Rev Martin Walker.

Afterwards, they returned to Lucy's parents' farm in Huish Champflower for the reception, held in a tent borrowed from a neighbour.

Lucy's mum, Olivia, said: "The wedding was originally going to be in Huish Champflower, but when we realised that wasn't going to be possible, we chose Raddington instead.

"It's in the same benefice and it's an incredibly beautiful little church. It was the nicest possible place."

Lucy and Ben had needed to obtain a special licence as their banns could not be read during the nationwide closure of places of worship.

On Monday the newly-weds headed for their honeymoon in Majorca, one of the first destinations to open up again to tourists, in the first EasyJet flight out of Gatwick.

The couple live and work in London, although Lucy grew up in Somerset.

Olivia said: "We were thrilled they were able to have their day after all.

"We were very lucky because there's lots of people who weren't so fortunate and who have had to put their weddings back to later in the year and even next year."

PHOTOS: Emily Fairweather.