Terminally-ill former EastEnders star Wendy Richard and her new husband smiled and waved following their star-studded wedding ceremony.
On Friday Wendy married her long-term partner John Burns before beginning treatment for cancer. The ex-EastEnder, who has beaten cancer twice previously, brought the date of the ceremony, at a hotel in London’s Mayfair, forward after learning the devastating news that the disease had returned.
Wendy found the disease had returned to her left armpit during an annual check-up in January. It has since spread to her right kidney and bones.
Celebrity guests who attended the event included Todd Carty, who played Richard’s son Mark Fowler in EastEnders, Perry Fenwick, who plays Billy Mitchell in the soap, Laila Morse, who plays Mo Harris, and Wendy’s on-screen daughter-in-law Natalie Cassidy, who played Sonia Fowler.
As the couple left, the pavement outside was strewn with red-petal confetti. The couple got into a stretch-Saab with blacked-out windows.
The actress’s beloved dog Lily, a two-year-old Cairn Terrier, who is the niece of Betty, Pauline Fowler’s dog in EastEnders, was a special guest. Mr Burns smiled and waved Lily’s paw before the couple left.
Around 60 family members and close friends are thought to have attended the civil ceremony and reception. Scores of photographers stood outside the hotel as the proceedings, which lasted just over three hours, took place.
One guest, holding a glass of champagne, described it as a ‘joyous occasion with the dog playing a major part. It barked right on time’.