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The BBC's Emma Simpson
"They needed encouragement to kiss for the cameras"
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BBC Scotland's Isabel Fraser
"There wasn't the traditional Scottish wedding scramble"
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Thursday, 3 August, 2000, 18:30 GMT 19:30 UK
Browns head for honeymoon
The couple kiss after the ceremony
The couple kiss after the ceremony
Chancellor Gordon Brown and his new wife are heading for their honeymoon after their unexpected marriage at his home in Scotland.

The pair wed in a small, private ceremony in North Queensferry, near Edinburgh.

Afterwards, the couple kissed in the garden in front of a battery of television cameras and press photographers.

They said in a statement: "We are overjoyed. It has been a wonderful day and a lovely ceremony."

The surprise wedding at 1015BST took place in front of more than 30 friends and members of the couple's families.

Browns leaving
Honeymoon ahead: Mr and Mrs Brown leave the house
They left the house just before 1600BST after a celebration with family and friends.

The service was conducted by the Reverend Sheila Munro, minister for the parishes of Inverkeithing and North Queensferry.

The newly-weds are believed to be heading for Cape Cod, Massachussets, the area which is home to America's first political family, the Kennedys.

The wedding announcement was delivered in a surprise statement on Wednesday evening from Mr Brown's special adviser, ending speculation over when the couple would tie the knot.

Notice on display

Mr Brown's brother John was best man. He said: "I said some nice things about him and reminded him about one or two things that had happened on our travels over the years."

He said he had known about the wedding for two weeks but insisted it had not been a total secret because the notice of their intention to marry had been on public display in accordance with Scottish law.

"Maybe some of the press were not as observant as they should have been," he added.

Rev Sheila Munro
Rev Sheila Munro
The couple were married by Rev. Sheila Munro, who said: "I feel I am giving something to them, involving God in their special day and they will be involving God in the rest of their lives."

Prime Minister Tony Blair and his wife Cherie did not attend, but were among the first to offer their congratulations.

A spokeswoman for the Blairs said they were "very happy for the chancellor and Sarah Macaulay".

The couple plan to hold a party for friends and colleagues when they return from honeymoon in September.

Secret engagement

They will move into Mr Brown's central London apartment, and split their time between there and his home in Fife.

It emerged that Mr Brown, 49, had proposed to Miss Macaulay in January and a date for the wedding was set soon afterwards.

Mr Brown and Ms Macaulay, 40, met six years ago when her PR firm, Hobsbawn and Macaulay Communications, was involved in arranging Labour Party events. They began dating in 1996.

Posing for wedding photographs
Posing for wedding photographs
Despite widespread speculation about their relationship, there was no hint that wedding plans were being drawn up before Wednesday's surprise statement.

It emerged that the announcement of the impending wedding had been displayed in the normal way in the parish where the ceremony would take place.

As the couple posed for photographs, a neighbour said: "We've been waiting for it for a long time.

"It's a great day for the village. We're all delighted for them."

Mr Brown has had several serious relationships over the years, but it has been suggested that his passion for politics has previously hindered his personal life.

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See also:

03 Aug 00 | Scotland
Chancellor's wedding in pictures
03 Aug 00 | UK
Joy as chancellor weds
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Brown stops the gossips
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'Flash Gordon' settles down
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Message for Brown on family life
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A thoroughly modern woman
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Tears over Brown?
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Brown silent on wedding rumours
Gordon, Prudence and the other woman
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