Couple in 'historic' London Scientology wedding

A couple have become the first to tie the knot in a Scientology church after winning a landmark legal battle in the Supreme Court.

Pair wed in London Scientology church

Two newlyweds have become the first couple in Britain to tie the knot in a Church of Scientology chapel.

Louisa Hodkin and Alessandro Calcioli, both 25, walked down the aisle in the historic ceremony after winning a landmark legal battle at the Supreme Court to exchange vows at the church.

Dressed in a traditional white wedding dress and clutching a white and red bouquet of flowers, Louisa beamed as she emerged from the ceremony arm in arm with her new husband.

Guests applauded and threw confetti over the newly married couple from East Grinstead, West Sussex, as they walked out of the Church of Scientology in Blackfriars, London.

Wedding 'has own place in history'

In a statement released ahead of today's nuptials, Louisa Hodkin and Alessandro Calcioli said their wedding was a "momentous" day and the culmination of a five-year battle to have their religious rights recognised.

Bride-to-be Miss Hodkin took legal action after the registrar general of births, deaths and marriages refused to register the London Church Chapel for the solemnisation of marriages under the 1855 Places of Worship Registration Act - because it was not a place for "religious worship".

"We are pleased and proud that our victory brings to an end inequality and unfairness, not just for Scientologists, but for people of all faiths - because the Supreme Court have now provided a definitive description of what a religion is, which had not existed before in English law.

All weddings should be magical and momentous for the couple concerned, but we are conscious that ours, as the first for our religion in England, has its own place in history."

– Statement from Louisa Hodkin and Alessandro Calcioli

Five Supreme Court justices upheld Miss Hodkin's challenge following a hearing in London last July.

They said the Church of Scientology held religious services, therefore its church was a "place of meeting for religious worship".

"We are delighted that Louisa and Alessandro can now be married in their church in front of their family and fellow parishioners.

They have paved the way for other Scientologist couples.

We extend our congratulations to the happy couple and wish them well in their future life together.

This is an historic day for religious equality and freedom for all in the UK."

– Church of Scientology spokesman

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Couple to make history in London Scientology wedding

A couple who will make history by becoming the first to marry in a Church of Scientology chapel hailed their wedding as a "victory" over "inequality and unfairness".

Louisa Hodkin and Alessandro Calcioli will walk down the aisle this afternoon in a ceremony which will be beamed live on the internet.

Louisa Hodkin and Alessandro Calcioli
The couple say their wedding is the culmination of a five-year battle to have their religious rights recognised. Credit: PA

They will become the first couple to tie the knot in a Scientology church after winning a landmark legal battle in which the Supreme Court ruled that the chapel was a "place of meeting for religious worship".