When a woman told her grandmother she was tying the knot with her partner of eight years, she was startled by her reaction. Her grandma immediately asked her if she could be the bridesmaid. What followed next was profoundly heartwarming and monumental.
Vita Cresswell lived with her lovely family in Seaton, Cumbria, England. She and her other siblings — two sisters and a brother, were extremely close to their grandmother, Martha Wallbank, who was a single parent to their mom, Veronica Cresswell.
Being a single mother, Wallbank was said to have worked three jobs to provide for her daughter. In addition, Vita said her sweet grandma had looked after her and her siblings when they were kids, taking them on long walks and spoiling them with her tender love and affection.
A Loving Grandma
Vita noted that Wallbank was originally from Yorkshire, but she lived in Kirkland Bungalows in Cockermouth, Cumbria, until she turned 98. After that, the loving grandmother began living in the Solway House care facility in Maryport.
After the Cumbria couple tied the knot at Lorton Church, the priest made a special announcement.
A Special Connection
The Seaton woman said she and her siblings adored their sprightly grandma, who meant the world to them and was a big part of their lives. Vita also added:
“We are all really close and I have the fortune of living the closest to her so we spend lots of time together.”
A Cute Response
So, when Vita decided to marry the love of her life in 2016, she knew she had to share the news with her beloved grandma.
After hearing that her beautiful granddaughter had decided to settle down with her partner of eight years, Wallbank had an adorable response. Vita recalled her beloved grandma’s exact reaction from the moment:
“She just perked up and said ‘I’m the bridesmaid aren’t I?'”
Picking the Date
Vita and her then-fiancé, Gary Whineray, 31, said they didn’t want their big day to be just about themselves, so they devised a plan. The couple decided to keep their wedding on their grandmother’s birthday.
You might wonder why the couple chose Wallbank’s birthday as their wedding date. Here is what Vita had to say about it:
“We wondered how people pick dates so we decided to pick [Martha’s] birthday. Then she just said ‘I’m the bridesmaid, aren’t I,’ and we just thought why not and went along with it. She was absolutely made up, it was so cute.”
The Gorgeous Bridesmaid
So, when Vita, 29, walked down the aisle on April 8, 2016, her proud grandma was not only the guest of honor but also her bridesmaid. Wallbank nailed her look with a vintage cream coat and a light blue hat adorned with lace and feathers.
Whineray and Vita recalled that their cheerful grandma stole the limelight and emerged as the life and soul of their special day celebrations. “I bet she was thinking, ‘Why do you keep looking at them? It’s my day.’ It was gorgeous how happy she was. She had a ball,” added Vita.
A Wonderful Day
Wallbank reportedly selected all the hymns for her granddaughter’s big day and even chose the post-wedding meal. Vita recollected:
“It couldn’t have worked out any better. We got her posies and she was in the same colours as the other bridesmaids. She was singing and laughing and waving at everybody.”
After the Cumbria couple tied the knot at Lorton Church, the priest made a special announcement. Shortly afterward, the guests sang a happy birthday song to Wallbank.
To their relief, Vita and Whineray said they had a memorable day, and things came together perfectly.
What worried the couple was that Wallbank, who was relatively healthy except for a few memory issues, might think she was the bride as she was smitten with the groom.
The Lovely Record Holder
Vita revealed that her grandma loved Whineray and was very fond of him. She said the duo shared a beautiful connection, with Wallbank pranking Whineray and his being extremely emotional regarding her health.
Looking back on their happy day, the couple said they had a spectacular time. But what pleased them was that their lovely grandmother had an unforgettable birthday, rocking her bridesmaid look.
As reported by Daily Mail, Wallbank became U.K.’s oldest bridesmaid in 2016, on the same day she became a centenarian.
The Online Messages
The adorable grandma’s story gained traction on social media, inviting comments from netizens far and wide:
“Oh this has made me cry buckets! Martha, good on you!! 100 years young. Vita, you’re a wonderful granddaughter (sic).”
— (@susie.clayton.7) April 29, 2016
“A very happy birthday Martha. What a lovely bride and bridesmaid.”
— (@linda.scott.14224) April 28, 2016
“What a wonderful and loving granddaughter. Her Grandma must be very proud of her. I hope they had a wonderful double celebration (sic).”
— (@dolores.lavety) April 27, 2016
If you liked reading this story, please share your feedback on Facebook.
Click here to read another story about a 100-year-old woman arrested by the cops on her birthday at a nursing home to fulfill her wish.