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Saturday, 8 June, 2002, 12:54 GMT 13:54 UK
Invites confirm McCartney wedding
Sir Paul McCartney and Heather Mills
The couple have said nothing about their wedding plans
Sir Paul McCartney and Heather Mills have sent out invitations to wedding celebrations at an Irish castle, it has emerged.

The wedding party will take place at Castle Leslie in the village of Glaslough, County Monaghan on Tuesday.

But it is not clear whether the ceremony will happen at the same time.

The couple have refused to comment on mounting speculation they were to wed at the Victorian castle next week.
Castle Leslie - picture: Irish Independent
Castle Leslie usually hosts upmarket weddings

But on Saturday it emerged wedding invitations had been accepted by prominent Irish guests.

Preparations continued on Saturday within the 1,000-acre grounds where three marquees have been erected for guests.

Mobile kitchens, generators, oil tankers, frozen food lorries and special events consultants arrived at the site.

Gary Roberts, minister at the St Salvator's Protestant church in the castle grounds, said interest in the church was unprededented.

No-fly zone

A 100-strong private security team has arrived in the Irish village from Scotland, and was being briefed on Friday about arrangements for Sunday's service at the church.

Mr Roberts, 44, said that the service would be restricted to "regular parishioners" - apparently to prevent journalists seeing any preparations in the church.

He said about 25 people usually attended the service but about 250 people had asked if they could come this week.

He said: "We would always encourage more people to come to church - but for the right reasons."
Sir John Leslie
Castle owner Sir John Leslie has dropped hints

Staff at the castle insisted the heightened activity was for a product launch.

Local helicopter leasing companies have said that a no-fly zone has been imposed over the grounds - which would prevent journalists from photographing any preparations.

The village has been besieged by journalists after repeated rumours that the wedding would take place there - either on Thursday or next Tuesday.

The couple have kept the date and venue of the wedding a tight secret, but Sir John Leslie, 84, whose family owns Castle Leslie, has suggested that the ceremony would take place on Tuesday.
Castle Leslie
Security around the castle grounds is tight

He said the former Beatle had already visited the castle.

"He came here about a year or two ago just as a visitor - we take paying visitors - and he had a look around."

The first inkling that the village was linked with the wedding rumours came earlier this week, by New York Post columnist Cindy Adams.

Ms Adams said a reception there would follow a wedding at a nearby church on Tuesday.

'Going fine'

Castle Leslie's owner, Sammie Leslie, refused to comment.

And there were rumours the couple would marry in New York, or in Scotland.

For his part, Sir Paul has said only that wedding preparations are "going fine".

Sir Paul, 59, met anti-landmines campaigner Mills, 34, three years ago and they became engaged last July.

BBC News Online charts Sir Paul McCartney and Heather Mills' relationship


The courtship

The happy couple

Remembering Linda

PHOTO GALLERY

THE LOCAL HERO

In Pictures
Sir Paul's big day
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