How this couple had 200 guests at their wedding amid the pandemic

Lifestyle Team
·2-min read

Many couples up and down the country are facing the difficult news that their dream weddings are having to be cancelled or postponed.

Childhood sweethearts, Ben Jackson and Sophie Austin, know this feeling all too well after their big day was cancelled because of the coronavirus.

Ben Jackson and Sophie Austin getting married over Zoom
Ben Jackson and Sophie Austin were due to get married in March. Photo: AAP

The pair, who got engaged in August 2018, were meant to be hosting their dream wedding for 200 people.

Not to be deterred by COVID-19, they decided to go ahead anyway and asked their friends and family to dial in through Zoom, a virtual video call app.

A Zoom wedding
Their family and friends attended the virtual wedding through Zoom. Photo: AAP

It might not have been the day they originally planned, but the couple weren’t disheartened by the way it turned out, describing it as “amazing”.

“I think it really drew back the sparkliness and extra stuff of a wedding and made it really obvious what was important: the two of us saying the vows to each other.

“Even though we didn't have everyone here, it made it more intimate and special.” Austin said.

Couple married during quarantine kiss
They've rearranged their wedding for September. Photo: AAP

The singer and actress wasn’t able to pick up her dress because the wedding shop she ordered it from closed down because of the lockdown.

Although the pair have rearranged their ceremony for September, they wanted to do something special on their would-be wedding day.

“We still wanted to make the date significant to us because we had such a build-up.

“Also it was so nice for everyone else as well to have an online party and see a lot of faces. It shows how good Zoom is in this time.” Austin added.

You might wonder what the dress code etiquette is for a virtual wedding. Jackson said there was a “real mix” of outfits from the guests.

Ben Jackson and Sophie Austin of the school sweethearts holding their wedding cake as they get married over Zoom video chat, after the Coronavirus lockdown made their dream wedding impossible.
The couple even had a cake on the day. Photo: AAP

While some marked the occasion wearing the outfits they were planning to wear to the wedding, others were a little more casual in their approach.

“I know a couple of my mates were wearing their suits but underneath they had their football shorts on.” Jackson admitted.

The idea of a Zoom wedding was originally floated by their pastor, and the pair loved the idea.

Once the lockdown is lifted they will have to go and firm up the legal side of the day, but the day provided a lovely bit of relief during an otherwise difficult time.

Words by Caroline Allen

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