Lynley Bilby

Lynley Bilby is a reporter for the Herald on Sunday.

Our official rules: Office stays open late for MKR couple

Tresne Middleton and Carly Saunders at their commitment ceremony in 2012. They married in New Zealand last week. Photo / New Idea
Tresne Middleton and Carly Saunders at their commitment ceremony in 2012. They married in New Zealand last week. Photo / New Idea

The course of true love never did run smooth, but a New Zealand Government official did his best to help a celebrity couple walk down the aisle when their dream wedding seemed in peril.

Department of Internal Affairs customer services team leader Carl Nordstrand stayed at work late last Friday to make sure Australian reality TV stars Tresne Middleton and Carly Saunders got their paperwork to marry after a glitch was spotted in the lead-up to their big day. The popular same-sex pair, propelled into the limelight as contestants on cooking show My Kitchen Rules, planned to wed secretly in New Zealand ahead of a series of publicity engagements last week.

The effervescent cooking duo had previously held an intimate commitment ceremony in 2012. They came to Auckland last weekend to wed as Australia does not recognise same-sex marriage.

The school teacher and real estate agent appear on the primetime television show as best friends.

Before the show went to air in Australia they asked producers to downplay the lesbian relationship for fear of a backlash.

They have since revealed the true status of their relationship.

Nordstrand, who does not watch My Kitchen Rules, said he was only too happy to stay an extra three hours at the end of his working week as the pair made a dash from the airport to pick up their marriage certificate.

He said the problem with a document lodged in Australia was spotted earlier in the week, but couldn't be fixed until the pair arrived in person on Friday night.

The couple drove straight from the airport, arriving with their luggage at Auckland's Albert St office at 8pm - three hours after scheduled closing time. They finalised the declaration in just five minutes.

Said Nordstrand: "They thanked me profusely. They were a very, very appreciative couple and got married the next day."

It is understood the pair's wedding will feature in a women's magazine.

- Herald on Sunday

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