Vita Cresswell lived in Seaton, Cumbria, England, alongside her loving family. Her grandmother, Martha Wallbank, who had raised Vita’s mother, Veronica Cresswell, as a single parent, was very dear to Vita and her three siblings – two sisters and a brother – with whom she had a strong bond.
Martha, who raised her child as a single parent, was reputed to have held down three jobs to provide for them. According to Vita, Martha, their affectionate grandmother, had taken care of her and her siblings during their childhood, taking them on extended walks and showering them with her gentle affection and kindness.
Martha hailed from Yorkshire, but she lived in Kirkland Bungalows in Cockermouth, Cumbria until she reached the age of 98. Thereafter, this compassionate grandmother relocated to the Solway House care home in Maryport.
According to the lady from Seaton, Martha was a vibrant presence in their lives, and she held a special place in the hearts of Vita and her siblings. Vita further mentioned that they were a close-knit family, and since she lived closest to Martha, they spent a considerable amount of time together.
In 2016, when Vita made the decision to tie the knot with her significant other, she knew she had to break the news to her grandmother.
Martha’s response to learning that her lovely granddaughter had chosen to commit to her boyfriend of eight years was nothing short of heartwarming. Vita recalled the precise reaction of her grandmother, who lit up and asked if she would be the bridesmaid.
Vita and her now-husband, Gary Whineray, 31, made a deliberate decision to not make their wedding solely about themselves. Instead, they came up with a unique plan: to get married on Martha’s birthday.
You might be curious about why the couple chose Martha’s birthday as their wedding date. Vita explained that they were interested in the significance of choosing a particular date, so they decided to go with Martha’s birthday. When Martha asked if she would be the bridesmaid, they thought it was a great idea and went ahead with it. It was touching to see how Martha dressed up beautifully for the occasion.
At the age of 29, Vita walked down the aisle on April 8, 2016, with her joyful grandmother, who was both a guest of honor and a bridesmaid. Martha looked resplendent in a vintage white coat and a light blue bonnet adorned with lace and feathers.
Gary and Vita fondly reminisced how their cheerful grandmother stole the show and became the heart and soul of their wedding celebration. It was beautiful to see how happy she was. She had a fantastic time, Vita added.
According to reports, Martha handpicked all of the hymns for her granddaughter’s wedding and even played a part in planning the reception dinner. Vita fondly remembered that the wedding went off without a hitch. They bought Martha bouquets and dressed her in the same colors as the other bridesmaids. She was happily humming, laughing, and waving to everyone. It was a truly wonderful day.
After the Cumbria couple tied the knot at Lorton Church, the minister made a surprising announcement. Shortly after, the guests sang a rousing rendition of “Happy Birthday” to Martha.
Vita and Gary were delighted to say that they had a truly unforgettable day, and everything went off without a hitch.
The couple was worried that Martha, who was in reasonably good health but had a few issues with her memory, might mistake herself for the bride because of her infatuation with the groom.
Vita shared that her grandmother absolutely adored Gary and their relationship was truly special. Martha enjoyed teasing and pranking Gary, and he was very caring and attentive to her condition.
The couple expressed that they had an absolutely wonderful time on their wedding day, but what truly made them happy was seeing their beloved grandmother have an amazing birthday while dressed up as a bridesmaid.
The heartwarming story of the loving grandmother went viral on social media, eliciting reactions from people all over the world.