Northern Ireland

Speaker misses out on the Twelfth.... to say I do

Willie Hay
Derry City Councillor Maurice Devenney played the pipes for the newlyweds

Stormont Speaker Willie Hay is to miss out on the Twelfth of July celebrations for the first time in almost 50 years. But he has a very good excuse - he will be on honeymoon.

The DUP MLA married his fiancée Doris McMorris at Ebrington Presbyterian Church in Londonderry on Saturday afternoon.

The groom and his new bride celebrated with family and friends at a reception in the city.

Mr Hay's Derry City Council colleague Maurice Devenney played the pipes for the newlyweds.

The couple will spend their honeymoon in the south of France.

Mr Hay, a high profile Orangeman, will be thousands of miles away when his brethren take to the streets of Portrush on Monday.

But the newlywed, who has been planning the event for three years, said the clash with the Twelfth weekend was unavoidable.

"The date was set several years ago and we had to work around the sailing times for the boat to France for our honeymoon," Mr Hay said.