David Bowie marries Angela Barnett

David Bowie married his first wife, Angela Barnett, at Bromley Register Office on Friday 20 March 1970.

The couple had met in London in 1969, and were married a year later.

I married her because she was one of the few women [his emphasis] that I was capable of living with for more than a week. We never suffocated each other at all. We always bounced around. No. I don’t think we fell in love. I’ve never been in love, thank God. Love is a disease that breeds jealousy, anxiety and brute anger. Everything but love. It’s a bit like Christianity. That never happened to me and Angie. She’s a remarkably pleasant girl to keep coming back to and, for me, always will be. I mean, there’s nobody … I’m very demanding sometimes. Not physically, but mentally. I’m very intense about anything I do. I scare away most people that I’ve lived with.
David Bowie
Rolling Stone, 12 February 1976

The witnesses at the wedding were Clare Shenstone and John Cambridge, Bowie’s drummer. They were greeted on the steps of the register office by Bowie’s mother Peggy, who had not been invited.

David Bowie and Angela Barnett on their wedding day, with Bowie's mother Peggy, 20 March 1970

When Cambridge went to sign the register, Peggy approached the desk ahead of him and signed in his place. Bowie allegedly shrugged his shoulders at Cambridge to indicate his acceptance.

David and Angie exchanged Peruvian bangles instead of wedding rings. Guests at the wedding included Tony Visconti’s girlfriend Liz Hartley, and roadie Roger Fry.

The couple posed for photographs outside the register office – Peggy had alerted the local press ahead of the day. The party then celebrated over the road in the Swan & Mitre pub, before hosting a party at their home, Haddon Hall.

Last updated: 27 August 2018
UK album release: David Bowie (Space Oddity)
US album release: The Man Who Sold The World
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