Sandown South IW councillor, Ian Ward was married to his long-term partner Connie Cowley in a moving ceremony in the Mountbatten hospice chapel last Friday (Oct 1).
Ian and Connie have been friends for many years, but grew close some eight years ago, after the death of their respective spouses, Trish and Malcolm. Ian, who was first elected to the IW Council in 2005, was chairman of the Council in 2013, Connie was pleased and proud to act as his consort during his years of office; however, she remained fiercely independent and would not agree to Ian’s marriage proposals because she said she did not want to burden him.
However, after she became seriously ill and was moved from St Mary’s Hospital to Mountbatten, she finally relented and the pair were married by their friend the Rev Tony Richards after a special licence was granted by the Archbishop of Canterbury. Another friend, Andrew Turner, the Island’s former MP, gave Connie away and Ian’s son, David was his best man.
Ian said: “I asked Connie several times if she would marry me, but she always said we were happy as we were. I was so pleased when she finally said yes. I will be forever grateful to the wonderful staff of the Mountbatten hospice who organised everything very quickly. Because of Covid restrictions on numbers we could only invite a few close friends, but in a way that made it even more special. Connie is finally Mrs Ward, something I have wanted for a long time.”
Andrew said: “I have been to many weddings, but this was one of the most moving I have ever attended. Connie and Ian are very dear friends and I was honoured to be asked to give Connie away. Mountbatten made everything very special.”