A military-loving couple have tied the knot surrounded by weaponry at The Tank Museum.
Wanda Armstrong-Bridges and Steve Ellis love The Tank Museum so much they moved from London to live near it and Wanda even proposed there.
So keen were they to wed here that the Museum applied for a wedding licence for them. When Covid arrived the wedding had to be delayed but has now taken place with more than 60 friends and family attending.
Steve spent 13 years in the 5th Royal Inniskilling Dragoon Guards and Royal Dragoon Guards on Chieftain tanks. They each have two daughters from previous relationships and their shared love of tanks brought them together eight years ago.
Wanda said: “I had always wanted to be in the RAF but just before I was due to join I suffered a fractured skull and was deemed unfit for service. However, I have always loved military history and when I met Steve we realised we had a lot in common.
“A few years ago I was made redundant and we decided to go travelling for six months. When we returned we wanted to live near the Tank Museum because we loved it so much.
“So we got out a map and drew a circle around the museum within which no point was more than an hour away – and we ended up in Yeovil.
“It was just before Covid when I proposed to Steve at the museum on February 29 2020.
“I gave him some dog tags that matched his real ones – and on one I’d had engraved ‘will you marry me?”.
Steve added: “Unfortunately Covid meant our wedding was delayed and it kept being delayed because we had guests coming from all over the world. But finally, we had the perfect wedding at a place we both love and visit all the time.
“The museum staff were brilliant and even got the wedding licence for us because no one had been married there before.
“We showed our guests around the museum and we’ll keep returning, but now as a married couple.”
Steve, a facilities manager, who trained in Bovington at the start of his military career, and Wanda, a radiological compliance manager, are planning a honeymoon to the Pacific Northwest.
Rosanna Dean, Visitor Experience General Manager, “Wanda and Steve have been supporters of The Tank Museum for a long time and we were so pleased when they decided to get married here.
“They chose to have a full day with us, including a ceremony overlooking the Tank Story Hall, afternoon tea and a buffet and reception in the evening, in sight of the kind of tank has Steve served on.
“It was a fantastic day and I know I speak for everyone at the Museum when I wish them every happiness.”