Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds release wedding photo after marrying in secret ceremony

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Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds have released a photograph of their wedding day after the couple tied the knot in a surprise ceremony.

The prime minister, 56, married Ms Symonds, 33, in a small ceremony at Westminster Cathedral on Saturday.

The photograph issued by Number 10 shows the couple gazing at each in Downing Street's garden after the wedding.

Ms Symonds is wearing a long white dress and a floral headband and Mr Johnson is sporting a dark suit and blue tie, with a white flower in his buttonhole.

A Number 10 spokesman said on Sunday: "The prime minister and Ms Symonds were married yesterday afternoon in a small ceremony at Westminster Cathedral.

"The couple will celebrate their wedding with family and friends next summer."

Who is Carrie Symonds? A profile

It is understood Ms Symonds will take her husband's surname and be known as Carrie Johnson.

It was previously reported the couple had sent out "save the date" cards telling family and friends to keep 30 July 2022 free for celebrations.

The couple became engaged on the island of Mustique in late 2019 and have a one-year-old son, Wilfred.

The marriage is Mr Johnson's third.

The Sun reported that the ceremony at the Catholic cathedral was carried out by Father Daniel Humphreys who had given the couple pre-marriage instructions, and baptised Wilfred last year.

Shortly after 1.30pm, the Byzantine-style church was suddenly cleared of visitors, with staff saying it was going into lockdown, the newspaper said.

Half an hour later, a limousine carrying the bride swept into the piazza outside the main west door.

Mr Johnson and Ms Symonds were the first unmarried couple to live in Downing Street, having moved in together during July 2019.

He was previously married at the age of 23 to Allegra Mostyn-Owen in 1987.

He later married Marina Wheeler in 1993, but they separated in 2018. They have two daughters, Lara Lettice, 26, and Cassia Peaches, 22, and two sons Milo Arthur, 24, and Theodore Apollo, 20.

The PM also has another child, Stephanie Macintyre, with art consultant Helen Macintyre.

Weddings in England are currently subject to strict coronavirus restrictions and only up to 30 people in COVID-secure venues are allowed.

Children of all ages are included in the limits on the number of attendees for both ceremonies and receptions, but anyone working at events is not counted in the limits.

Current rules say wedding guests and staff are required to wear face coverings, except when eating or drinking or where exemptions apply.

Guests do not have to be placed on socially distanced tables, but should be served all food and drink while seated.

Amateur choirs, bands, or musicians may also perform at events in a group of up to six indoors, while outdoors, they can perform in multiple groups of up to 30.

But dancing is advised against due to the increased risk of transmission, except for the couple's traditional first dance.

Meanwhile, Saturday's wedding took place at the Catholic cathedral despite Mr Johnson being twice divorced.

Catholic canon law does not permit the marriage of a divorcee whose former spouse is still alive, although annulments can be granted to certify the original marriage as invalid from the start.

Catholic writer Catherine Pepinster told the Mail On Sunday that as Mr Johnson's previous marriages were "in non-Catholic settings", the church did not recognise them.

"As far as the church is concerned, this is his first marriage," she said, adding: "The others don't need to be annulled."

The wedding comes at the end of a difficult week for the prime minister in which his former aide Dominic Cummings branded him unfit for office.

The prime minister's former aide said Mrs Johnson had been desperate to oust him from his role as Mr Johnson's right-hand man, and had sought to put her own friends in key positions in a manner that was "completely unethical and clearly illegal".

Mr Cummings also claimed that in February 2020, when the pandemic was becoming a major global crisis, Mr Johnson was "distracted by finalising his divorce, his girlfriend wanted to announce being pregnant and an engagement, and his finances".

Following news of the PM's wedding, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said: "Congratulations to Boris & Carrie. Whatever our political differences, I wish them a happy life together."

Appearing on Sky News, vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi said of the couple's wedding: "I think it's a wonderful thing for both of them, that they have made their marriage vows to one another."

Work and Pensions Secretary Therese Coffey tweeted a message of congratulations to the couple.

"Congratulations @BorisJohnson and @carriesymonds on your marriage," the cabinet minister said.

She was joined by Northern Ireland's First Minister Arlene Foster, who tweeted: "Huge congratulations to Boris Johnson & Carrie Symonds on your wedding."

But former Labour frontbencher Jon Trickett said the wedding was "a good way to bury this week's bad news" on Mr Cummings' testimony, the spread of the Indian coronavirus variant and the row about funding of the Downing Street flat.