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Nantes hosts France's first night weddings

Mairie remains open until 11pm to allow couples to take their vows after work 

The first 'night weddings' in France have taken place in Nantes. 

A number of marriages were conducted at the Brittany city's mairie long after the office's normal closing time on Friday. 

The mairie, which usually closes at 4:40pm, remained open until 11pm to perform extended 30-minute ceremonies. 

The city's mayor, Johanna Rolland, told journalists invited to the first night of weddings, "Nantes is the sixth largest city in France, a city that moves, which innovates. Here we like to launch new and creative ideas." 

She said that the idea came from a consultation process several months ago: "In our big city, the schedules of the inhabitants evolve, expectations and uses evolve. 

"We covered many subjects, health, transport, security, as well as the opening-up of a number of 'special moments'. 

"We offer a personalised atmosphere, while keeping the republican and solemn dimension of a wedding," she said. 

One of the first couples to take advantage of the late-night service said that they had taken advantage of the later timeslot so that they would not have to miss work for their nuptials - though they added that the time on the invitations had caused some confusion among their guests.

Two more evenings have been made available for night-time weddings this year - September 22 and December 15.

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