Page last updated at 18:52 GMT, Sunday, 8 November 2009

Greatest day for Take That singer

Mark Owen (right) arrives with Howard Donald and Gary Barlow
Mark Owen (right) arrives at the church with Howard Donald and Gary Barlow

Take That singer Mark Owen has married his fiancee Emma Ferguson at an intimate ceremony in the Highlands.

The service was held at Cawdor Parish Church, near Inverness, followed by a reception at Cawdor Castle.

The couple emerged from the church just before 1800 GMT and were showered with confetti by their guests.

Take That, made up of Owen, Gary Barlow, Howard Donald and Jason Orange, were were expected to sing at the wedding.

Guests made an archway for the couple to walk under, which obscured the bride and groom from the view of fans who had queued for up to six hours, leading to shouts and boos.

Emma Ferguson
The bride was 25 minutes late for the ceremony

The wedding service had begun as darkness fell on the Highland town. It is understood the bride had requested a service by candlelight.

Owen, 37, from Oldham, arrived with fellow band members Gary Barlow, Howard Donald and Jason Orange and waved at fans.

The bride arrived 25 minutes late for the wedding, wearing a white V-neck fitted gown, embellished with crystals, and an antique-style veil.

Surrounded by photographers, she was assisted into the church by her bridesmaids.

She smiled and waved as the crowd outside the church cheered and applauded.

Celebrations were due to be held in two huge teepees constructed for the massive event.

Fans and press oustide the church
Fans and the press gathered outside the church

Cawdor Castle, between Inverness and Nairn, has been the ancestral seat of the Thanes of Cawdor since the late 14th Century and was popularised in Shakespeare's tragedy MacBeth.

The estate houses Drynachan Lodge, which sleeps up to 22 people and is surrounded by five cottages where guests will also be staying.

The giant teepees, which can hold up to 60 people, have been erected on the grass behind the lodge overlooking the river Findhorn.

Industrial heaters to keep the guests warms were set up at the site.

Owen and Emma, who is an actress, arrived on Thursday, and had a dress rehearsal in the evening.

The marriage is the biggest celebrity wedding to hit the Highlands since Madonna wed Guy Ritchie at Skibo Castle in 2000.

Only 50 guests, including the couple's two children, Elwood, three, and Willow Rose, one, were due to witness the low-key ceremony.

'Under orders'

After the service, the guests were due to be transported to Cawdor Castle for a private, lavish reception with high-security employed to stop gate-crashing.

Before the service, Arlene Lapham, manageress at the Cawdor Tavern, just yards for the church, said: "I think it will be a great asset to the village and will put Cawdor on the map. It is hard to say what we all expect because Cawdor is a quiet village and you don't see many people."

Cawdor Parish Church
The service was held at Cawdor Parish Church

However, Cawdor pensioner Alasdair MacLeod said he was concerned about where fans and the media would park in the village.

"The biggest difficulty is parking and of course all of the fanatics could be quite a problem," he said.

One local, who did not wish to be named, said: "The whole of Cawdor is abuzz with expectation.

"Staff at the castle are under orders not to say anything about it, but we have heard they are gutting out part of the castle to prepare something special for the reception."

Owen, who won the second series of Celebrity Big Brother in 2002, has been engaged to Emma since 2006.

The couple, who have turned down magazine offers to cover the ceremony, have visited the Highlands in the past and have told friends the venue is their dream location.

Take That reformed in 2006 - more than a decade after splitting up.



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