Our Wedding Story: Blackrock boy meets Mount Anville girl

Julie Watchorn and John Ryan first met at age 16 walking home from Mount Anville and Blackrock College where they went to school

Julie, a chartered accountant from Blackrock, Co Dublin, and solicitor John, from nearby Foxrock, are both 32 and first met aged 16 while walking home from Mount Anville and Blackrock College where they went to school.

They started going out when they met again in UCD studying business and legal but parted ways a few years after graduation.

In May 2012, John was living in London when he and Julie bumped into each other at the rugby Heineken Cup Final.

“On the way back to Dublin, we started talking again,” said Julie. “He was still able to make me laugh out loud and we still knew each other inside out. Communication stopped again for a few months but on March 21st, 2013, John phoned me when he was home and asked if I wanted to meet up – he arrived at my gate 20 minutes later.”


In June 2014, John proposed at Parknasilla Resort and Spa – a favourite spot of Julie’s where she has been going with her family since childhood – and they booked it that day for their wedding on March 28th, 2015.

A special memory for the bride, who wore Vera Wang, is driving to the church with her parents Charles and Yvonne Watchorn through the Ring of Kerry.

She and John were married by Fr Peter Burns – who also married John’s parents, Helena and the late Des Ryan – in St Michael’s Church, Sneem.

Harpist and vocalist Marina Cassidy performed during the ceremony and the flowers were done by Fiona O’Shea of the Window Box in Sneem.

The bridesmaids – also in Vera Wang – were Julie’s sister Elizabeth; her friend Louise Lacey and cousin Laura Smyth. Her brothers Richard and David were ushers.

The groom’s brothers, Paul and Colm, were the best man and groomsmen.

The newlyweds ran outside after the ceremony to get photos by the sea.

“Everyone thought I was mad . . . but they’re my favourite photos even though we got lashed on. I didn’t care.”

The DJ finally gave in to demands to play Maniac 2000 by Mark McCabe – "he stopped everything and the place just erupted," said Julie.

“Our music was a bit of an experiment. Pianist Fergus Nolan who plays in the Black Door and his buddy DJ Dirk Montage played together and it worked really well. They had a play-off which was hilarious.”

The couple – who live in Islington, London – mini-mooned in Kinsale, Mount Juliet and the Merrion Hotel and will honeymoon in September in Italy and Croatia.

Photographs: Philip Daly Photography, philipdalyphotography.com

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