Helen McEntee weds in politician-free ceremony

Minister of State and former parliamentary assistant Paul Hickey tie the knot in Meath

Helen McEntee  married her long-term partner Paul Hickey in a private ceremony at  in Castletown, Co Meath. Photograph: Seamus Farrelly

Helen McEntee married her long-term partner Paul Hickey in a private ceremony at in Castletown, Co Meath. Photograph: Seamus Farrelly

 

Louise Walshe

Minister of State for European Affairs Helen McEntee has married her long-term partner Paul Hickey in a private ceremony at her parish church in Co Meath.

The 31-year-old met Mr Hickey in the Dáil where he formerly worked as parliamentary assistant to Donegal TD Joe McHugh, now Government Chief Whip.

The groom, from Castlecoote, Co Roscommon now works in health economics. The couple have been engaged since January 2016.

None of Ms McEntee’s Government colleagues were present at the ceremony on Monday which was attended by the couple’s family and friends, with an estimated 350 guests celebrating the wedding in Cabra Castle, Co Cavan.

Ms Mc Entee was elected a Fine Gael TD for Meath East in a byelection following the death by suicide of her father, the late minister of state Shane McEntee in December 2012.

Her brother Vincent walked her down the aisle at St Patrick’s church in Castletown near Nobber, and both Mr McEntee, and Mr Hickey’s late father Paddy Hickey, were remembered in prayer during the ceremony celebrated by Fr Michael O’Brien.

The bride wore a backless ivory dress with deep neck-line and net skirt. Her four bridesmaids, led by her sister Sally, wore gowns in blush pink.

Other guests at the huge wedding included Ms McEntee’s uncles - consultant and former Meath GAA player Gerry McEntee and current Meath senior manager Andy McEntee, as well as Mr Hickey’s uncle and chair of Glanbia, Henry Corbally.

The newly-weds will spend their honeymoon in the US.

Just before the nuptials, Ms McEntee said: “I’ve been looking forward to our wedding day for months now and at last, it’s finally arrived, though I was a bit nervous earlier.

“We’ll have a great day, rain or shine, celebrating with family and friends who have come from near and far to join us today. That’s the main thing.

“We’ve received so many best wishes this morning from people all over the country, which has all been so overwhelming.”