Sir Chris Bonington to marry today

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Wedding bells are ringing today for Sir Chris Bonington.

The legendary mountain climber is marrying Loreto McNaught-Davis in a London ceremony and said: “We are both very much in love.”

Around 60 family members and friends of the couple are due to attend the church service.

Many of Sir Chris’s friends and fellow mountaineers from Cumbria are invited.

The couple have known each other for more than 50 years.

Loreto is the widow of Ian McNaught-Davis, a mountaineer and pioneer of television programmes on home computing, who died in February 2014.

The marriage comes almost two years since Sir Chris’s wife Wendy died from motor neurone disease in July 2014.

Sir Chris, 81, who lives near Caldbeck, said: “I’m very excited and a tiny bit nervous, especially at having to make a speech and that kind of thing.

“We decided to get married in London at Loreto’s church because it seemed the right thing to do.

“Guests include eight grandchildren and dear friends from Cumbria.”

Sir Chris is normally seen wearing all-weather gear, but he has made an exception for his big day.

He said: “I’m not wearing a tie, but I have a nice velvet Nehru suit in burgundy.

“You’ve got to have a bit of style!”

His son Rupert, who lives in Keswick, is thrilled at the marriage and says: “They are quite love-struck.

“It is so nice to think that when you get to that age, that you still have such feelings.

“It is great to come from such a happy relationship of marriage and want to do it again. Why not?”

Sir Chris says getting married was the right thing to do: “It is a commitment. We both felt that we really do want to get married.

“We have known each other as spouses of close friends since 1961.

“Sadly, Mac died a few months before Wendy and we came together and a real, warm love blossomed.

“We are both very much in love.”

The couple are to honeymoon in Paris before spending some time at their home in the south of France. Sir Chris is working on a new autobiography, some 50 years after his first, I Chose to Climb, was published.

He said: “It is a more personal book. I will spend the morning writing and we will go walking in the afternoons.”

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