By Louise Walsh
Community spirit in Meath has ensured that a local couple's white wedding wasn't put on ice, despite the blizzard conditions.
Eric Horan and and his Welsh bride Sian Williams had their dream wedding after locals in Kilmessan rallied around to clear snow and ferry the wedding parties to and from the church yesterday, with the help of Trim Fire Services
Local 4X4 drivers answered a call by Costello's Centra shop in Kilmessan to drive the newly-weds and their guests through the blizzards to the Trim Castle Hotel, some 10kms away.
Trim Fire Services also turned out to escort the happy couple to their reception.
Residents grabbed shovels and anything else they could find to clear the church grounds of snow on the morning of the wedding.
Guests weren't going to let the weather affect their style as they abandoned their wellies at the church door, swapping them for more elegant shoe wear.
Eric and Sian even braved the wintry winds to get photographs outside a snow-clad Trim castle.
"The veil blew off Sian and they could hardly see the camera in the blizzard conditions but they just laughed through it all," said wedding photographer Ruth Foran
"It wasn't the ideal romantic, fresh snow that we stopped in - it was driving snow and freezing temperatures.
"The local community are amazing. I think Sian and Eric were literally blown away by how good everyone was.
"They came out and cleared the snow from the church, the local shop put out a call for the 4X4s and even Trim Fire Services drove out to escort them into the town.
"Eric collected Sian's family from the airport on Wednesday and most of the guests managed to get to the wedding.
"The hotel were also amazing and accommodated staff with rooms so they could work and not worry about getting home. Everyone went out of their way to make sure that Storm Emma didn't ruin the day for them."
Enfield-based Ruth, who stayed in Trim on Wednesday night in case travel conditions deteriorated, added that she was due to work at three weddings this weekend, but the other two couples had made the decision to postpone their big day because of difficulties.
Speaking this morning, Sian said: "I was getting ready in the hotel when my sister-in-law sent me a picture of the men clearing the snow from the church and said she was so emotional. None of my family, or indeed Eric and myself, could believe how amazing the local people were.
"After Gary Costello put up an appeal on Facebook, ten jeeps showed up and there were even more at our disposal, if we needed them. They say you never forget your wedding day but because of the people of Kilmessan, I really won't forget mine," she said.
Eric who met Sian at his friend's stag do in Cardiff a number of years ago added: "The community spirit was marvellous. And the hotel was amazing, anything they could do for us, they did. There was never talk about cancelling.
"They even put up the staff for the night so they could work at our wedding.
"We'd both just like to say a huge thank you to absolutely everyone who did all they could to make our day magical," they said.