LOVE and best wishes are being sent from as far away as Australia for the Evening Advertiser Bride of the Year.

There are now just days left before Lucy Griffin, 20, becomes Mrs Neil Zerebecki, and she says she can't wait.

But Lucy and Neil, from Covingham, aren't the only ones who are feeling the excitement.

Neil's aunt and uncle Sue and Dave Broadbridge, and cousins Jodie, 17, and Ricci, 12, who moved to Perth in Western Australia 11 years ago, contacted the Evening Advertiser ahead of the couple's big day.

Sue, 45, whose brother Martin is Neil's father, said: "Unfor- tunately, as much as we wish we could, we are unable to attend.

"Being across the other side of the world in Perth makes it very hard for us when family occasions come around.

"But we want to say congratulations and best wishes to Lucy and Neil on their special day. We are so sorry that we can't all be there to share this day with them both.

"Our thoughts and love go out to them and we will be thinking of them both every minute of the day.

Dave, 45, was born in Melbourne, in Victoria, but returnedto England when he was six. He and Sue have been together since they were 18, but he always wanted to return to Australia.

Sue said: "We came here to start a new and better life for us and our family. But the hardest thing was, and still is, leaving all of our families behind in the UK and also missing out on seeing my nieces and nephews growing up, and our families seeing our children growing up.

"Thank goodness for video cameras and photos," Sue said.

Neil, 23, a customer services manager at Nationwide's Chip-penham branch, said: "It's really nice to hear from them like this. We last saw each other three years ago at a New Year's Eve party when they stayed for two weeks.

"I'm very excited about the wedding. I don't seem to be nervous at all but that will probably change as the wedding gets nearer."

Dental nurse Lucy, a former Kingsdown School pupil, said: "It's so sweet to hear that Neil's family have sent their love from Australia. It's such a lovely surprise.

"We would have loved them to be with us but it's quite far to go for a wedding."

Lucy and Neil's wedding will be held at St Andrew's Church in Wanborough on August 2.