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Tuesday, 24 August, 1999, 07:50 GMT 08:50 UK
Zoe and Fatboy have a ball
It must be love: The happy couple after the blessing
Zoe Ball and Norman Cook - better known as dance music star Fatboy Slim - partied into the early hours of Sunday with family, friends and stars following their country wedding celebration.

The couple earlier had their marriage blessed on a sun-drenched lawn at Babington Hall in Somerset.

To complete the moment, It Must be Love, the Madness classic, was sung by the band's lead singer Suggs, backed by a small orchestra.

"It was fantastic and very emotional," said 28-year-old Ball.

Cook, 36, said: "We had a little cry." But he joked: "We've both been reading about Mick Jagger's marriage, and we wanted to make sure it was legal."

The day's proceedings did not run entirely smoothly - the blessing was delayed when Radio 1 guests arrived late.

The Radio 1 Sun Bus got stuck in traffic on its way from London, and the couple decided to hold on until it arrived.


The couple will go on honeymoon on Monday
The bride's TV presenter father, Johnny Ball, serenaded the guests with Edward Lear's The Owl and the Pussycat.

"He promised he wouldn't," Ball said. "He was supposed to say it.

"But it was beautiful. He sounded like Frank Sinatra."

Among the guests were Top of The Pops presenter Jayne Middlemiss, Radio 1 dance DJ Judge Jules, and Radio One boss Andy Parfitt.

Ball's old Live And Kicking co-host Jamie Theakston was also enjoying the celebrations, sporting pale blue nail polish.

Philippa Forrester from Tomorrow's World, Zoe Ball's first boss Matthew Bannister, Chris Evans' TV sidekick Will MacDonald, and Channel 5 newsreader Kirsty Young were also there.

String of hits

The happy couple met almost exactly a year ago during Radio 1's week on the dance isle Ibiza, where Cook was playing in clubs.

Radio 1 DJ Dave Pearce said: "I've known Norman for 15 years. He's quite a smiley guy but I have never seen him this happy.

"They are in each other's arms all the time and it's really nice."

Since then his pop persona Fatboy Slim has had a string of number one hits and won the Brit award for best dance act.

Ball has taken sole charge of BBC Radio 1's Breakfast Show, restored its listening figures, and has won a Sony Gold Award.

Fans at a distance

The couple booked the whole luxury 21-room mansion, which is the country retreat of London media club Soho House.

The press and public were kept at a half-mile distance, and a marquee with screens for privacy was erected at the grounds for the evening's events.

The guests dined on lobster, champagne and strawberries and were entertained by music act Stretch and Vern.

The couple were due to get hitched at Babington House on Saturday, but brought the day forward.

Low-key wedding

"The idea was that today was the special day for us, but we couldn't actually get married in the grounds here," Ball said.

Ball wore a lime green dress with pink and baby-blue flowers for Friday's marriage ceremony at Bath Register Office.

The low-key event was attended by 40 close family and friends of the couple, including the bride's best friend Sara Cox, who has done a stint presenting the Big Breakfast on Channel 4.

The couple will leave on Monday for a two-week honeymoon at a secret destination.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Audio
The BBC's Carole Jones: "This is one of the most eagerly awaited celebrity weddings of the year"
Video
The BBC's John Kay: "The couple said they did not want to commercialise their wedding"
See also:

15 Feb 99 | Entertainment
Zoe gets a Fatboy fianc
22 Aug 99 | Entertainment
Pop music's first couple
21 Aug 99 | UK
'I do': The thing to do
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