A north community pulled out all the stops to give a Chinese couple the most romantic day of their lives by organising the wedding of their dreams on the bride’s birthday.
Di Lv and her fiance Aixiang Jin from Shenzhen set their hearts on exchanging their vows in the Highlands.
Just days before the couple were due to travel to Scotland Di sent an e-mail to the Bogbain Farm venue asking if it was possible to get married on May 1.
Manager Jo De Sylva actually thought the couple wanted to tie the know in 2017, as most people start planning their nuptials about a year in advance.
She said: “It was only during the subsequent conversations I realised they meant May 1 this year.”
The couple chose to get married in Inverness because they had seen pictures of the area on the internet and read about the beauty of Scotland.
But their big day was almost ruined when the bride and groom missed their connecting flight from London to the Highland capital.
Because of the bank holiday all trains and flights were booked and they had to hire a car and drive 570 miles through the night to arrive just 30 minutes late.
The couple were greeted by a piper at Fort Augustus, where they underwent a civil ceremony, before travelling to Bogbain for the traditional handfast ceremony in which the couples’ hands were loosely tied together with a piece of tartan to signify the binding together of two families.
Then they sat down to a meal of venison, seafood and cranachan, prepared by local chef John Lochart, of Inverness-based pop-up restaurant Fired UP.
Musician and TV presenter Bruce MacGregor, who owns Bogbain Farm, serenaded the couple with romantic Burns songs during their celebrations.
For the bride and groom it was an experience of Highland hospitality they are unlikely to forget.
Di, who also celebrated her 33rd birthday on her wedding day, said: “I had never been to the Highlands before but I looked it up on websites.
“The beauty and tranquility stood out as the perfect place for me to get married.”
The business development manager with a global consulting firm, and her 31-year-old new husband, who works as a sales manager for a biotechnology company, were overwhelmed by the efforts of everyone involved in getting the wedding ready at such short notice.
Di said: “All the efforts made for making this wedding in Scotland happen have turned out almost more important than getting married itself.
“There could be no better location more suitable for celebrating such a private but special moment.”