Ten­nis date led to love match

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - INSIDER -

Know­ing it took about 15 years for Peter Ger­rie to con­vince Lynne Fisher to marry him, the cheer from their guests when they fi­nally said “I do” was highly ap­pro­pri­ate.

Among the 125 guests do­ing the cheer­ing were their six adult chil­dren, who helped or­gan­ise the wed­ding and pro­vided the en­ter­tain­ment.

Peter’s father and Lynne’s mother, both aged in their 80s, also agreed, sim­ply telling the new­ly­weds it was “about time”.

Peter, a youth com­mand po­lice of­fi­cer, and Lynne, who has run her own re­tail ware­house at Cas­tle Hill for 24 years, met at the home of a “match­mak­ing” mu­tual friend almost 16 years ago.

“I was at­tracted to Peter’s quiet, gen­tle way of speak­ing, and he is very tall,” Lynne says.

When Peter asked her out on their first date, Lynne ar­rived late at the semi-for­mal event, wear­ing her ten­nis at­tire.

“I told him I couldn’t come be­cause I had to play ten­nis, and he said just come af­ter the game,” Lynne says. Although she felt self-con­scious, Peter found it at­trac­tive that she had ar­rived in her ten­nis gear.

“He plays wa­ter polo, so we are both in­ter­ested in sport and keep­ing fit,” Lynne says. Both also en­joy travel and qual­ity food: “I fancy my­self as a home cook, and Peter is a very will­ing recipe tester.”

Both were di­vorced when they met.

Lynne’s first mar­riage had ended seven years ear­lier, while Peter’s had split 18 months prior. Lynne had three chil­dren, Ge­orgina, Thomas and Stephanie, while Peter had three daugh­ters, Emma, Laura and Becky. Peter first asked Lynne to marry him about a year af­ter they met.

“He asked me almost ev­ery year af­ter that,” Lynne says. “I had al­ways said no.”

Then Lynne’s ex-hus­band be­came ill, and her chil­dren went through “the painful, drawn-out death of their father. Af­ter he died I de­cided I can­not waste time or the op­por­tu­nity to re­marry,” she says. “Peter asked again on my birth­day last year and I said ‘yes’. He was quite sur­prised, and just said, ‘well, let’s get a ring’.”

Lynne’s white gold en­gage­ment ring has sev­eral small di­a­monds around a large cen­tral di­a­mond. “It’s very blingy and sparkly, and the wed­ding band is also di­a­mond­set, mak­ing it even more sparkly,” she says.

Choos­ing his­toric Gal­ston Com­mu­nity Hall, built in 1892 and up­dated with a wooden cathe­dral ceil­ing and wall of win­dows over­look­ing park­land gar­dens as their wed­ding venue, Lynne opted for a vin­tage-style wed­ding dress. She de­cided af­ter flip­ping through dress pat­tern books at a fab­ric shop with a friend and find­ing all her favoured de­signs were 1950s styles. An­other friend told her about Forever Vin­tage at Five Dock, where she found a rosepink 1950s cock­tail dress with a se­quined lace bodice over­lay and full tulle skirt.

“It had a dou­ble pet­ti­coat, to make it look like I had a waist,” Lynne jokes. She added a cus­tom-made belt with bow.

Peter’s daugh­ter Emma, a make-up artist, did Lynne’s hair and make-up. Laura, a florist, ar­ranged flow­ers with help from Becky. Con­tin­u­ing the fam­ily af­fair, Lynne’s daugh­ter Ge­orgina, a singer in Berlin, re­turned to or­gan­ise en­ter­tain­ment, singing at the cer­e­mony with Thomas and Stephanie, a mu­si­cian in Syd­ney. Lynne’s chil­dren also sang a slow ver­sion of How Sweet It Is To Be Loved By You for the cou­ple’s bridal waltz.

“All six chil­dren had a role in the suc­cess of the day,” Lynne says. “It was beau­ti­ful, just the best wed­ding. Once we said our I dos, the crowd erupted into the most won­der­ful clap­ping and cheer­ing. It was a mag­i­cal, fan­tas­tic day.”

The cou­ple drove north for their hon­ey­moon, when both were in­jured in a car ac­ci­dent near Coffs Har­bour. They con­tin­ued to By­ron Bay days later, to re­cu­per­ate with help from their chil­dren, and have re­turned to set­tle at Cas­tle Hill. PHO­TOG­RA­PHER: MEL HAYES PHO­TOG­RA­PHY

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