Page last updated at 07:15 GMT, Monday, 10 May 2010 08:15 UK

Fundraiser brides climb Pen y Fan peak in their frocks

Anne-Marie Beresford-Webb and friends at the summit
The walk to the top of Pen y Fan was in aid of a cancer centre

A group of friends gave their wedding dresses a second airing when they wore them to climb south Wales' highest peak.

While most bridal gowns only make it as far as the loft, these frocks reached the top of Pen y Fan in aid of Cardiff's Velindre Cancer Centre.

The hike was the idea of Anne-Marie Beresford-Webb from Monmouthshire, whose father died of cancer last year.

It is one of a series of wedding dress fundraisers she is staging.

The six-strong group undertook the walk in full wedding attire - accessorised with hiking boots and cagoules - as part of a year-long fundraising campaign for Velindre.

Inspiration

The theme was inspired by a feature on National Wear Your Wedding Dress to Work Day.

"Velindre is the type of place you don't ever think of until you need it - then it's the most important thing in your life," said Anne-Marie.

"After my experience of the wonderful work they do there, I started talking to my friends about what we could do to help them and how we could make it stand out from the crowd of people trying to raise money for good causes.

"My mate was reading an article in the newspaper about National Wear Your Wedding Dress to Work Day, so we took inspiration from that."

It's okay for the others; they've already hooked their men
Fundraiser Anne-Marie Beresford-Webb

The women had to make some concessions to the practicalities of climbing a mountain.

"Most of the dresses have long trains and veils so we've had to get the blokes involved to act as sort of bridesmaids, walking up the mountains behind us," said Anne-Marie.

"One thing we haven't come up with a solution to is what we're going to do if we need a wee!"

While Ms Beresford-Webb's fellow climbers are already married, she is yet to tie the knot - and does not think the climb will enhance her chances.

Half marathon

"I've had to buy this absolutely hideous contraption from a charity shop, all bustles and corsets," she said.

"It's okay for the others; they've already hooked their men. But after my other half sees me in this thing, splattered in mud and sweating like a horse, I don't think he'll ever be getting down on one knee."

The Pen y Fan climb is the first event in a series including a wedding dress half marathon and an ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro - although Ms Beresford-Webb has been told that bridal wear is strictly forbidden on Africa's highest peak.

She hopes to raise her target by Christmas.



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