Liz Metcalfe stores 162 wedding dresses in a room above her bridal boutique in Clitheroe, Lancashire. All of them have been ordered by customers but have not yet been worn as the lines of the bride-to-be await their big day after months of frustration and delay.
Each dress tells its own story of disruptions and disappointments after lockdowns and ever-changing Covid restrictions have turned the marriage plans of countless couples on their heads in the past 18 months.
But together these frames made of billowing silk, satin and lace pose a different question. What makes Clitheroe the most enthusiastic spouses in Britain out of the residents of this quiet market town in the picturesque Ribble Valley?
A report by the Office for National Statistics released last week identified Clitheroe as one of the