By Tracey Matthies

JULIET Murray and Warren Hoffmann were in the final stages of planning their Saturday wedding at the Phillip Island Winery when the state was thrown into lockdown.

“We were just two seconds from the finish line,” Juliet said.

The couple had driven up from their Belgrave home on Friday afternoon to put the finishing preparatory touches to their Saturday celebrations when they sat in the car park of the winery to hear Premier Daniel Andrews’ announcement.

“We were expecting a metro lockdown and thought we could just get people to come up a day early to be here but then he said it was state-wide,” Juliet said.

Undeterred, the couple swung into action to bring their wedding forward to beat the midnight lockdown.

Their celebrant, Iris Bloomer of Wonthaggi, was willing and available.

“There’s no wedding without a celebrant,” Juliet said.

Critically, the couple was able to get their mothers and their children there, deciding that anyone else who could make it was a bonus, but they weren’t getting married without their closest family present.

In the end, 65 of their 95 guests made it to Phillip Island for the nuptials and celebrations that followed, including some who had flown in from Tasmania on Friday and dashed down to the Island.

Those guests are now home again, but isolating for two weeks.

They had booked a band, Olly and Scuzzi, which was also available on Friday evening, and their reception venue, Phillip Island Winery, moved heaven and earth to give the couple the wedding of their dreams.

In fact, the winery was able to use some of the goodies they had ordered in for Valentine’s Day celebrations for the rescheduled reception.

Juliet was even able to get her flowers from her original supplier, Lakeside Flowers at Monbulk.

Juliet said the couple was “just blown away” by the flexibility of all their vendors.

Feeling relaxed and happy, the newly-wed Mr and Mrs Hoffman are planning a six-week driving holiday up the east coast to “somewhere warm” in July – lockdowns permitting, of course!