Way back in March, when life was still just about normal, I got to photograph my last wedding before we all took to our houses. I vividly remember a few days before Charlotte and David's special day having my fingers tightly crossed for them that their day would go ahead and not get cancelled at the last minute. Luckily, their day went ahead as planned, first the ceremony at their church St Edwards, Clifford and then onto Hazlewood Castle, where everything went perfectly, well apart from when I had to use my fire fighting skills to prevent a total disaster!
I first met Charlotte and David at a Wedding Fair, where we instantly hit it off. Finding the correct Photographer was probably more important for these two than most. As soon as they stopped to chat, I realised that Charlotte was deaf but trust me you would never know. She lipreads like a boss! For her though, getting a Photographer who understood this and that she was comfortable with was really important.
On the day itself, Charlotte was getting ready with all the girls at her Mum and Dad's house before heading to the church. I think it's always so special when the Bride leaves from her family home.
Meanwhile at the church David was speaking with family and welcoming their guests.
I have to say, not only was the church one of the nicest, brightest churches I have had the pleasure to work in for a while, but also Father Newman and his congregation were the most welcoming! Also at the church was the lovely Karen Gillespie from Yorkshire BSL whose job was to sign the ceremony for Charlotte and a few of her close friends.
After the fabulous service, it was off to Hazlewood Castle for the rest of the wedding day celebrations.
Now, I alluded to an incident earlier where my fire fighting skills and military training, had been called upon and how a disaster was narrowly averted. During some of the photographs, one of the exit doors was used for ease of access to the gardens, which allowed a small breeze to flow into the main wedding breakfast room. This draught then set off an unlikely chain of events causing one of the table centrepieces to slide into a tea light and catch fire. As soon as the alarm sounded the hotel staff promptly went to see where the alarm was being triggered. At the same time I happened to walk into the room, only to find the centre of a table on fire. Dashing towards the fire I was trying to think where I could find a fire extinguisher, then my next thought was to get water from the bar, but then I remembered that I had seen a vase with flowers in placed at the end of the top table. Grabbing the vase and (gently) discarding the flowers, I threw the water over the fire. Luckily the whole incident was dealt with swiftly, the hotel staff made sure the table was reset and looked just as it did before. It was as if it never even happened and I am pleased to say that the rest of the day carried on without a hitch!
It was such a great day, there was lots of great food, drink and laughter. The other great story from the day was to do with David Marken, an Event and Wedding singer who entertained the guests during the drinks reception and then again later in the evening. The bride and groom first met David when they were holiday. They were on a cruise where David was one of the entertainers and they became friends. So, when David proposed to Charlotte on the cruise, it was only right that he should be at the wedding and sing their first dance.
During the evening function we even managed to get outside for some gorgeous twilight photographs, which is when Hazlewood Castle really does stand out as as a stunning wedding venue!
It was such an honour and a pleasure to capture David and Charlotte's day!
Charlotte and David's day was so special in many ways and with the ever present threat of it getting cancelled made it even more of a celebration!
And, if you want to know what they thought of me, here is what they said the very next day by email.......
" We just wanted to send a quick thank you for yesterday. We had a fantastic day and really appreciated you being there to capture it for us. Everyone who we’ve spoken to had lovely things to say about you. You are a credit to your profession" David and Charlotte
Thank you, as ever to the amazing team at Hazlewood Castle Hotel for letting me be part of their organisation for the day. If you want to speak to Malissa about having your wedding at Hazlewood Castle & Spa, give her a call her on 01937 535315 If you need a photographer for your day, please get in touch. I would love meet you for coffee to hear more about your day, I can show you some more of my work and we can see if we get on. Give me a ring on 01904 533476 or drop me a line on [email protected]
They were lucky as it turns out, as now weddings and indeed social gatherings of any kind are now just a memory for most of us. My heart goes out to all my Bride and Grooms that have had to move their weddings, but know that when you do get to stand in front of your friends and family, it will be even more wonderful!
Venue - Hazlewood Castle & Spa
Hair and make up - Anna Stevenson
Flowers - Kate Mell Florist
Wedding entertainer - David Marken
BSL Interpreters - Karen Gillespie