Wedding Addicts: Hidden Lives

The illuminating human-interest strand returns this week with another documentary exploring unusual lives and remarkable people. At a time when the number of marriages in the UK is in decline, there are some people valiantly bucking the trend and getting married not just once, but again and again. This documentary takes a look at the lives of those addicted to marriage, asking why they do it, what makes so many people walk down the aisle with them, and what happens to the trail of partners and children left behind.

A wedding is supposed to be a once-in-a-lifetime event, but for Ron, Sandra, Pat and Martin, it is something they have experienced a number of times. With eight marriages under his belt, former Pontins bluecoat Ron has been dubbed the ‘most married man in Britain’. Meeting a woman at the holiday camp, marrying her, then divorcing her when the season started again became a regular event for Ron. “A lot of the times I was married to holiday centres rather than my wives. Showbusiness was like a mistress to me,” he claims. But his daughter, Kelly, sees it differently: “There’s been a lot of heartache, especially where the children are concerned,” she says. “I just want him to make it up to us.”

Sandra, meanwhile, has been hailed as the ‘Liz Taylor of Clydebank’. The town may not be quite as glamorous as Beverly Hills, but Sandra has one thing in common with the Hollywood actress: she has been married seven times, and twice to the same man. After marrying love-of-her-life George for the second time, she thought she had finally found happiness – until he jilted her just months after the wedding when she became ill. But, ever the romantic, Sandra is still searching for Mr Right: “What am I supposed to do?” she asks. “Give up on life and just sit on my sofa all day? No way!”

Pat has been married ten times – but only six of them have been legal. After one marriage broke down, Pat met someone else, decided not to wait for her divorce to come through, and remarried anyway. “I was stood at the altar half-expecting the doors to swing open and the police to take me away,” she remembers. “But they never did.” After three more bigamous marriages, Pat finally gave herself in to the authorities. She is now happily married to her tenth husband, Malcolm. “It took me ten times to find my Mr Right, but I’ve found him!” she declares.

Martin’s seven marriages broke down because he was not willing to abandon the true love of his life – Liverpool FC. When one of his wives decided to replace Martin’s Reds rug with something a little more feminine, it was the final straw and was quickly followed by divorce. So what has Martin learned from his marital experiences? “Women marry you then try and change you. Women let you down, but Liverpool Football Club will never let me down,” he concludes, philosophically.

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