No rubbish wedding for this in-love Sunderland refuse duo

Paul Worthy and Claire Fallon, from Sunderland, travel to their wedding in council rubbish truck

Refuse collectors Paul Worthy and Claire Fallon, who were married at the register office at Sunderland Civic Centre, and driven away in a bin lorry
Refuse collectors Paul Worthy and Claire Fallon, who were married at the register office at Sunderland Civic Centre, and driven away in a bin lorry

Two love-struck refuse collection drivers were determined not to have a rubbish wedding and did something different to make their day special.

Paul Worthy and Claire Fallon chose a dumpster truck from the fleet they drive every day to get them to the wedding on time.

The pair work together for Sunderland City Council and fell in love over five years ago.

But it was Claire’s idea to opt for the quirky wedding vehicle and asked her bosses to borrow a £127,000 Mercedes Econic refuse collection truck for their big day.

Claire, dressed in her white dress, and Paul, in his suit, climbed down from the dumpster truck after arriving at the register office at Sunderland Civic Centre yesterday, driven by a workmate.

The 32-ft long vehicle had heads turning as intrigued onlookers stopped to stare.

It had been on the road only hours earlier collecting rubbish from the streets of the city.

But after a quick tidy up and a dust of its cabin, the 27-tonne beauty was ready to roll.

Claire, 43, said: “It’s just a quirky idea, it was something different and something very memorable that we can look back on in future and have a laugh about.

“I wanted something different, that was my main idea.

“I wanted it to be the best day of my life and the rest of my future.”

 

The pair, of Sunderland, met when Paul worked on the back of the truck and Claire was a driver. They went out for a drink and have been together ever since.

Paul, 38, said: “It was about five years ago when we met. I used to work on the back. We went out for a night and things happened from there and that was it really. And we are here five-and-a-half-years down the line.”

The pair, who also work as gritter drivers as part of the council’s winter maintenance team, celebrated their day with family and friends at a reception at the nearby Bonded Warehouse building.

A colleague of the couple volunteered to drive the dumpster truck back to the South Hylton depot from the reception.

Claire added: “We haven’t decided on our honeymoon as yet because shortly after the wedding we will be starting our winter maintenance, which is the gritting. It’s going to be after that before we manage to get on our honeymoon.”

Claire laughed: “It’s a rubbish start to married life, but it can only get better.”

A Sunderland City Council spokesman said: “They met at work and asked for permission to use a refuse collection vehicle as they believed it was an apt thing to do. The City Council was happy to grant the request.”

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