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Amy and Brian’s perfect line-out

IRISH rugby star Brian O'Driscoll and actress Amy Huberman exchanged vows today in the star-studded wedding of the year in Mohill, Co Leitrim.

The happy couple were married this afternoon in St Joseph's Church in the remote Aughavas, surrounded by close family and friends from the worlds of sport and showbiz.

The newlyweds and their guests, including teammates Donncha O'Callaghan (31) and Rob Kearney (25), will celebrate the nuptials with a closely guarded two-day bash at the stunning Lough Rynn Castle, 16km away.

The couple and their wedding party descended on the pretty church at 7.10pm yesterday for their final wedding rehearsal with Fr Sam Holmes.

They arrived in separate cars and immediately wrapped their arms around one another and enjoyed a lingering kiss before crossing the threshold.

Gorgeous Amy (31), who was wearing a retro-style, multi-coloured dress with cream, patent sling-back heels, was seen beaming as she entered the venue and gave the thumbs-up.

Crowds of locals, who gathered outside during the hour-long rehearsal, burst into applause as the affectionate couple finally exited the church hand-in-hand.

Signs and banners with heartfelt messages of congratulations and good luck, as well as several Leinster flags, have been plastered around the surrounding rural area.

Speaking to the Herald, local parish priest Fr Sam Holmes said: "Brian and Amy are very welcome. The people of the area are all looking forward to their special day and wish them well."

He said he was not surprised Brian and Amy chose the church as their wedding venue.

"Looking at the couple, they're very nice and really they have no airs and graces about them at all.

"Aughavas really suits their personalities because they are a really lovely young couple.

"It's good for the area and I imagine it will be great for the hotel," he added.

Fr Holmes declined to give details on who will be joining him to celebrate the Mass, saying: "All will be revealed shortly."

Meanwhile, barriers and road blocks were erected around the extensive Lough Rynn grounds by gardai and private security staff this morning, to ensure maximum privacy.

The "excited" couple were spotted making their way into the exclusive grounds of Lord Leitrim's former estate separately yesterday, with a number of family members and friends.

O'Driscoll, who was casually dressed in jeans, was the first to arrive at approximately 11.50am.

The 31-year-old groom looked relaxed as he drove solo in a black Lexus, directly followed by an all-male convoy of friends in an identical vehicle, as well as a black golf.

They stayed until shortly before 1.30pm, when they departed to play 18-holes of golf in nearby Carrick-on-Shannon. They arrived back at the hotel at 6.15pm to greet newly arrived guests before going to the rehearsal just 40 minutes later with Amy and their extended families.

A number of grinning guests made their way up the hotel's long, tree-lined driveway, but more arrived this morning.

Huge deliveries of fresh pink roses from Calla florists were spotted being brought in to the hotel and the church.

Security around the remote area was stepped up from early this morning as villagers gathered early in a bid to catch a glimpse of the couple and their high-profile guests.

Gardai were given the couple's complete guest list to keep outsiders away from the reception. Only those on the list, as well as local residents with special permits, will be given local access around the hotel for the remainder of the day.

The newlyweds will enjoy a two-day bash, with a performance by the Coronas, before jetting off on honeymoon to Africa on Monday.

The couple spent the last night before their wedding enjoying separate knees-up with their family and close friends.

They will be jetting off to Tanzania next Monday for their well-earned honeymoon.

They spent the night before their nuptials in separate areas of the hotel as their nearest and dearest helped calm their pre-wedding jitters.

"Everyone knows it's bad luck to see each other the night before the wedding so they both had nice nights, away from each other," said an insider.

Actress Amy and her bridal party enjoyed a dinner in the Sandstone restaurant in the Leitrim hotel, while her rugby-star partner enjoyed a few quiet drinks with immediate family and friends in another part of the hotel.

Among those attending the ceremony today were his proud parents Frank and Geraldine, alongside his sisters Susan and Julie, while Amy's parents Harold and Sandra were in attendance with brothers Paul and Mark.

hnews@herald.ie


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