BELGIAN REFUGEES MARRIED.
NOVEL EVENT AT WEST VALE.
A couple of Belgian refugees who, with others, have been resident at a house in Elizabeth-street, Elland, for some time, were married at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, West Vale, on Wednesday, by Father Kealy. In order not to attract a great deal of local attention, the event was kept as quiet as possible, but this did not prevent people assembling both in the vicinity of the house and at the church.
The names of the contracting parties are Mr. Walter Rene Albert Bogaert, a native of Dudzeele, a small town which stood between Bruges and Zeebrugge, and Miss Elodia Valeria Josephine Deconinck, a native of Antwerp. The bride was given away by her father. Prior to the outbreak of the war the bridegroom followed the calling of a sculptor. Motor-cars were placed at the disposal of the wedding party by Ccr. J. S. Smithies and Mr. James Garnett. …
It had been the intention of the young couple to be married in Antwerp last September, but the invasion by the Germans upset all their arrangements, and, instead of a marriage feast, they were glad to escape to England. So hurried was their flight that many, in fact most, valuable articles were left behind. Miss Deconinck’s wedding dress was one of the articles which had to remain in the town while they fled to a point of safety.
At the church were assembled a sprinkling of the fair sex, many of whom were ladies who had made the journey from Elland. The service was conducted in English, and was very well responded to by the couple standing at the altar. In addition to the bride and bridegroom, there were present Mr. and Mrs. Deconinck, and the bride’s elder sister, together with Ccr. Lumb and Mr. Whitwam [who acted as witnesses].
The bride was smartly attired in a blue dress, with a large fur over her shoulder. .. There was no elaborate ceremony. As the bridal party left the church to rejoin the motor-cars showers of confetti were strewn over them, and later they received the compliments of local friends. Arriving at Elland on their return journey, the newly married couple were photographed, and after a repast they were conveyed by motor-car to Leeds, and presented to Mr. Balfour, the Belgian Consul in that city. For some time at least they are to reside at Elland. Local friends have forwarded a number of useful and handsome presents.