A couple who planned their wedding at their home in Telegraph Point went ahead despite the bushfire on their doorstep the day before.
Mick Rourke and Christine Bannister wanted to get married outdoors at their property, and had spent a year finessing the details with time and effort. Their garden landscaping had been a priority with new plants and gardens added, lawns where there previously were none, and their sheds tidied and decorated. An undercover area had even been built specifically for the event.
Then, on Friday November 8, fire threatened their home, and their plans rapidly fell into chaos. The fire crept up their back boundary to within 30 metres of the proposed venue. The Rural Fire Service put them on high alert for evacuation.
The groom's sister, Kerryn Patrick said red and blue lights and fire hoses became the wedding eve decorations. However, with a lot of hard work on the part of everyone involved, RFS, Mick and his sons and other friends, the fire was eventually contained.
Late on Friday afternoon the decision had to be called, do we go ahead, or do we change venue? Christine said, "We were going to get married tomorrow, no matter what!" Checking with the RFS, their property was declared safe ground, as the fire on Friday had created a cleared zone.
"Plans were once more in full swing," said Kerryn.
"Come Saturday afternoon, all was in place, guests had arrived, groom waiting patiently and bride about to enter. It was a beautiful afternoon. About 80 friends and family from interstate and locally, joined with Mick and Chrissy to celebrate their wedding."
As the wedding reception was underway, several fire-bombing aircraft flew overheard water bombing Red Hill less than a kilometre away.
"I don't think anyone is going to forget Mick and Chrissy Rourke's wedding," said Kerryn.
The couple are on honeymoon in Asia.