South Yorkshire woman marries her sweetheart - 31 years after he stood her up

Mandy Ashforth, 48, and Barrie Moat, 50, both from Rotherham
Mandy Ashforth, 48, and Barrie Moat, 50, both from Rotherham
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A South Yorkshire couple who lost touch more than 30 years ago after a teenage holiday romance have got married.

Mandy Ashforth was just 17 when she met 19-year-old Barrie Moat in Bridlington in 1982.

But she was left heartbroken when he did not turn up for the date they had arranged back at home in Rotherham.

Determined Mandy never gave up hope and, after finally tracking him down, the couple tied the knot it Rotherham last week.

Mandy, from Clifton in Rotherham, said they had the perfect day with seven bridesmaids and a big white dress.

The couple married at the Holiday Inn in Rotherham in front of 61 family and friends - a far cry from 1982 when Mandy was left heartbroken after Barrie failed to show up for their date and she spent two hours waiting at a bus station in Rotherham.

She went on to marry another man and have a family - but she never forgot her first love.

Then, in January 2013, she searched Facebook and was stunned to find Barrie.

The mother-of-five said: “We started messaging and it became obvious the bond between us was still there and was becoming stronger each day, so eventually we decided to meet after 31 years apart.

“It was the scariest thing I have ever done. But as soon as I saw Barrie, I knew all my hopes and dreams had come true.”

Barrie, from Handsworth, Sheffield, who had not long separated from his partner when Mandy got in touch, said: “Things very quickly clicked into place. It was just too good to be true. We both knew we had met the right person - I only wish I knew that 30 years ago.”