JOAN Alexander cycled 34 miles across Oxfordshire in her wedding dress after meeting her husband on a cycling forum.

The pair rode in tandem from Didcot to Watlington almost 12 years ago to celebrate their nuptials.

After getting married at Sutton Registry Office, the couple, originally from South London, cycled to Paddington, caught the train to Didcot and then cycled to Watlington.

Oxford Mail: Joan and TJ on their wedding day in 2010Joan and TJ on their wedding day in 2010

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Mrs Alexander, 51, said cycling her in wedding dress was “great fun” and getting her friends involved made the wedding feel “more like a community”.

She met her husband, NHS manager TJ, 57, on a cycling forum in early 2007 and the pair got engaged three years later, aged 39 and 45.

Oxford Mail: The pair met on a cycling forumThe pair met on a cycling forum

“TJ had posted on the forum looking for somewhere to stay,” she said. “I said yes as I knew people he’d stayed with previously and they came out alive so we met when he came to stay for the weekend.

“We both cycled at the time as I used it to get around as I had just stopped being a live-in nanny and TJ was improving his fitness as he’s asthmatic.

“In January 2010 we went cycle camping with people from the forum and he proposed to me in the tent.

Oxford Mail: They rode in tandem across OxfordshireThey rode in tandem across Oxfordshire

“The first thing I did was call White Mark Farm in Watlington to see when they had space for our wedding as it’s my favourite campsite.

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“I called my parents and my mum said, ‘Hallelujah,’ and my dad said, ‘That’s nice. I just got seven leaks from Tesco for seven pence.”

Oxford Mail: She tucked her dress into a white beltShe tucked her dress into a white belt

The couple, who now live in Wakefield with their eight-year-old son Nye, decided to cycle on their wedding day six months later as it was “in keeping with their relationship.”

“We got a few weird looks,” said Mrs Alexander. “We always say that people in Tooting wouldn’t notice if you rode an elephant through but it’s not true as they all looked.

Oxford Mail: She wore white cycling shoesShe wore white cycling shoes

“People were very supportive and cheerful. We stopped for a drink in Wallingford and someone said, ‘You’re not lying, did you really get married today?’

“It was very memorable and great fun. We like cycling and didn’t have a car at the time and all our friends joined in - it made them more involved than if we had driven off in a limo.”

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Oxford Mail: The couple now live in Wakefield with their son NyeThe couple now live in Wakefield with their son Nye

The bride wore white cycling shorts and a white belt to keep her dress tucked in on the ride.

She said: “It may have got a bit of oil on it but it’s hard not to do that.”


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