Terminally-ill dad will marry in stunning Paisley venue
By Marc McLean
A terminally-ill dad will marry his sweetheart in a stunning Paisley venue, thanks to numerous amazing shows of generosity.
Peter Pender, who was diagnosed with bladder cancer, and his long-term partner Diane Sutherland have been “completely overwhelmed” after Wedding Wish Makers and local businesses rallied round to organise their big day.
The wedding will now be held in the grand Coats Paisley building, which is the former Thomas Coats Memorial Baptist Church that now operates as a unique venue for special events.
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Peter was diagnosed with bladder cancer on September 9, 2016 after noticing blood in his urine. A tumour was found in the 53-year-old’s bladder, which led to his prostate and lymph nodes being removed to get rid of the tumour and other cancerous cells.
But the dad-of-three got devastating news in March this year when a CT scan showed his cancer had returned. A further PET scan in April revealed it was terminal.
After 22 years together, Peter is now preparing to marry Diane, his partner of 22 years on July 15.
Following an appeal on Facebook by Wedding Wish Makers, droves of businesses and individuals have kindly donated their services to make their big day as special as possible.
Peter said: “It’s just incredible, I can’t put into words how this makes us feel.
“We have been to see the venue and will be getting out kilts fitted at the weekend too.
“I’m so thankful for everything everyone has done and for giving Diane a fairy tale wedding she deserves.”
Coats Paisley is providing the wedding venue free of charge for the couple and their 100 guests.
And a number of generous business owners have helped out, donating everything from entertainment and transport to kilt hire and make-up.
Renfrew woman Suzanne Stevenson is the founder of the non-profit organisation Wedding Wish Makers, which was set up two years ago to organise and fund weddings for people who are terminally-ill.
Suzanne runs Wedding Wish Makers with the support of her friends Lee Anne Gentles and Lauren Roy-Sutherland.
Suzanne said: “I also work for Coats in Paisley and asked the trustees and my bosses if they could donate the venue for Peter and Diane’s wedding.
“They were delighted to host it here at Coats so the couple can have a really special day.
“The response from businesses and individuals to the Facebook post has been amazing too, and I’d like to thank all of them.”
Peter, from Pollok, and Diane first met at Hotshots Bowling Alley, now Hollywood Bowl, at Glasgow’s Springfield Quay in 2000.
They started dating and have been together ever since. They have three children; Henry, 18, James, 16, and Mackenzie, 14, who will all be there on July 15 to mark the special occasion.
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