Getting married on a farm may sound a little bizarre but South Farm in Shingay-cum-Wendy (what a great name!), near Royston, Herts isn’t just any farm … it is an absolutely breathtaking place and a most picturesque wedding venue!
You may remember reading about our pre-wedding meeting there with the lovely bride and groom-to-be, Laura and Johnny, back in May https://romseyfotografix.wordpress.com/2015/05/13/wedding-in-hertfordshire-anyone/ We were taken aback by how lovely it was!
And at the weekend – the big day itself finally arrived!
We’ve known Laura since she was born, so you can imagine this was an extra special one for us. We were invited as guests along with our two sons, as well as being the official photographers for the day. So it was a great opportunity to spend a weekend together as a family too (a bit of a rare occurrence now they’re all grown up!!).
The day before the wedding was amazing as well. We spent the afternoon and evening with Laura, her brother, Lewis, and lovely mum, Janice, who is a very close friend. We stayed in Royston, about 15 minutes drive from South Farm, at The Old Bull Inn which was comfortable and very welcoming.
We had a wonderful evening at a very quirky restaurant in the town, the Jolly Postie, which was “First Class” if you’ll excuse the pun (a little joke that kept cropping up all evening 🙂 ) Exactly as its name implies, it used to be the post office in town, and it’s cleverly kept up the postal theme throughout as its decor – in fact, we dined in the back of an old post van (yes, really!!). Janice booked it when we were there in May as a surprise for Laura – and she was thrilled! http://www.mcmullens.co.uk/jollypostie
The weather forecast predicted earlier in the week for the day itself had looked extremely dodgy, so it was a great relief to wake up on the morning of the wedding to bright skies and sunshine.
Especially as the wedding ceremony was to be outdoors!
The bridal suite at South Farm is spacious, light and airy. It’s set on two floors. Downstairs is ideal for the bridal party to have their hair and makeup done; its open staircase lends itself to loads of different photographic ideas, and upstairs with its huge windows and comfy sofas, and four poster bed, is a perfect area for a natter and relax whilst waiting a turn to be “worked on” by the stylists. A fantastic place for taking the shots of the dresses and flowers etc and of course the girls getting ready. Very well designed indeed.
There were many emotional moments to photograph, such as when Laura gave out her gifts to her mum and bridesmaids, as well as when she opened her beautiful card and gift from her hubby-to-be. It was a privilege to be there to share and capture the magic as everything was unwrapped and admired.
The bridesmaids had made a wonderful album filled with loads of photos and messages from the hen do, which they presented to Laura first thing – it looked brilliant – a fantastic keepsake for her to treasure!
In the meantime, Johnny and his groomsmen had arrived. Their first stop was the large Tudor Barn, where the tables were laid for the wedding breakfast. The guys had bought all the finishing touches for the tables with them and did a grand job of laying it all out, in the correct places!
More pressies were sent across from the bridal suite, for Lewis and the groom to be.
Tables set, Johnny and his groomsmen headed off to get ready.
The guests started arriving and the ceremony time drew near. Just time to do the groom and party shots before he headed off to see the registrar.
Then back to the bridal suite to see how the girls were getting on.
Yes, all ready – and what a beautiful bride!
Once the registrars had seen Laura in the bridal suite, it was time to go!
The seats for the guests were arranged on the large lawn one side of a small lily pond, overlooking an oak Summer House on the other, where the ceremony took place. Laura looked simply gorgeous as she walked down the aisle with Lewis by her side to give her away, and then she and Johnny walked up to the Summer House to say their vows.
Afterwards we all headed to the main courtyard to take the main group shot and throw some confetti, lots of it, kindly supplied by South Farm!
Then it was back to the lawn in front of the house for the drinks reception to the melodic sounds of a string quartet and to take some more photos of the guests. Afterwards we whisked away the newlyweds for some romantic shots in the grounds. Spoiled for choice!
Adding to the afternoon’s entertainment were the farm’s sow and her piglets, who have their stable adjacent to the Tudor Barn, along with the hens and peacocks, which were a joy to watch and I’m sure very used to being photographed!
We’d all been given the lyrics in advance to a song which means a lot to Laura and Johnny It Must be Love by Madness and the folk from Wedding Marryokes http://www.weddingmarryokes.com/ were there to record us all singing along to it at some stage throughout the day, from getting ready through to the evening party. A fantastic idea which really got everyone in the party mood – can’t wait to see the end result! And we were able to get some hilarious shots of folk strutting their stuff for the video too, not least the newlyweds 🙂
The meal was delicious and the cake was too – not only to eat but just look at it! Thanks to the very talented firstname.lastname@example.org Fabulous!!
Before we knew it, it was time for the first dance and the evening party was underway. Everyone had a ball that’s for sure!!
We did some final shots outside – couldn’t miss out on such a glorious sunset!
Then we put the cameras down and I took to the dance floor to have a little jig before the night drew to a close.
Everything was just perfect!
Our thanks to Ali at South Farm who ensured everything ran smoothly and for all her friendly help and guidance to us throughout the day.
Our one little hiccup was that our car got a puncture en route back to our hotel and we found ourselves stranded on a country lane in the middle of the night! Luckily we didn’t have to wait too long for the AA man to come to our rescue and fit the spare.
Huge congratulations to Laura and Johnny – we really enjoyed photographing your beautiful wedding and hope you love your pictures!