A COUPLE'S wedding day is tiring enough without the prospect of running through a hilly park in the mud.
And while some people run away to get married, very few actually run on their wedding day.
But newlyweds John Sell and Emma Frost, of Bencombe Road, Purley, are made of sterner stuff, and were not going to give up their strenuous exercise routine simply because they were tying the knot.
What they did not count on, however, was the surprise reception they got when they turned up at Whyteleafe Recreation Ground, off Hillbury Road, on Saturday.
The Total Body Fitness keep-fit classes members insisted the happy couple wore fancy dress when they turned up for an early-morning boot camp.
John, a 44-year-old electrician, was clad in a blue tutu, bow tie and waistcoat, while his bride-to-be, 45, looked dainty in a pink tutu, a veil and a wig.
Emma, a food preparer for store photographic presentations, said: "It was brilliant fun. When we first saw the tutus being taken out of a car, I thought 'please, no!'
"When John and I were running dressed up in the park, I tried not to look at dog walkers nearby – God knows what they must have thought.
"At one stage we were linked together by an elasticated exercise band. It felt like we were on a ball and chain – I hope its not an omen for the future.
"The surprise helped make our day. We will look back on it and laugh."
Total Body Fitness founder Lindsay Gillam organised the fancy dress fun. She said: "John and Emma were taken by surprise but they took it on the chin. I didn't go any easier on them because it was their wedding day."
Later in the day, John and Emma had a civil wedding at the Purley Knoll home of Emma's father Clive.
A vintage tea party reception followed.
The couple will jet off shortly on a two-week honeymoon to Australia – without the tutus.