Legendary soap actress and now newlywed Michelle Collins has dosed out the details of her breath-taking wedding to partner of 10 years Michael Davidson, after the pair tied the knot at Islington Town Hall.
Describing the low-key yet stunning London ceremony as an 'emotional affair' – being that all attendees "cried a lot" according to EastEnders and Corrie favourite Michelle, 60 – the bride exclusively reveals to OK! that a lot of aspects from her big day were in tribute to her mother Mary, who passed away last year following a two-year battle with cancer.
Michelle said: "It was very emotional because, as Mike said in his speech, we’ve lost a lot of people and there was a lot of people that couldn’t be there."
The mother-of-one added: "It was an incredibly emotional day because I kind of never thought I would actually get married and Mike didn’t really want to get married."
While Michelle clearly missed her on her wedding day, there were lots of nods to make sure her mum’s presence was felt by everyone.
"We had a picture of her in the registry office next to the celebrant and she was there at the party as well," she continued. "And we had a loop of photos and she was in a lot of them.
"I know she would have been really proud and she would have been proud we did it in Islington where we’re from. And The Chapel Bar [where the party was]… we used to go to Chapel Street market and my mum used to buy me a toy every Sunday."
In another tribute, Michelle’s wedding ring was her beloved late mother’s, while her engagement ring belonged to her mother-in-law.
Last April, Michelle shared a heart-warming snap of herself alongside her mother in a café posted to her Instagram last year and told her fans: "My beautiful Mummy passed away on Friday 30th April . We are all devastated.
"She leaves behind her partner Sid , daughters Vicky and myself , 3 grandchildren Charlotte , Jack and Maia and her nephews and nieces whom she loved very much and her little dog #nano from @alldogsmatter."
She added: "She was the strongest, kindest woman I knew. Fierce, protective, passionate, clever, funny, articulate. She gave Vicky and I our #drive and #hunger for life.'"
Explaining why she fell for hubby Mike, 39, back in 2012 after they were introduced by Michelle’s niece – whilst Mike at the time was working at a Surrey store selling jeans – Michelle tells OK! that she's fully aware that he loves her "unconditionally".
“He’s my best friend, someone I can talk to, have a laugh with – I can totally be myself with him," she disclosed.
"He loves me unconditionally for me. He’s been through so many of the ups and downs in my life over the last 10 years.
"He just loves me for me and all my flaws. Also, everyone loves him, and my mum loved him which is probably the most important thing."
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