When Rachel & Alex first got in touch with me about their wedding photography, we arranged to meet at their chosen wedding venue, Ettington Park Hotel. What a great venue it is too! It’s just six miles from the centre of Stratford-upon-Avon, and just a few miles from the start of The Cotswold Way. The Neo-Gothic mansion is set in 40 acres of parkland in a valley with the River Stour meandering through the middle of it – a fantastic location for a wedding!
We had a good chat about how they envisaged their wedding day and how I would go about photographing it whilst walking around the hotel. Then later that day they confirmed that they wanted to go ahead and book me!
I arrived on a warm April morning to photograph Rachel getting ready at her parents’ house. This was also where Alex and his best man were getting ready in another part the house. This was great as it allowed me to photograph both the bride and the groom getting ready for their wedding day. It was a nice and relaxed start to the day, although the groom was showing a few signs of nerves (which is pretty standard!) the bride just seemed to just be looking forward to the day.
After Rachel was ready, I set off for Ettington Park Hotel so I could be there to capture her and her dad arriving and also get a few shots of the groomsmen all together before the ceremony. The ceremony was held in The South Room and was a lovely and relaxed service, very much in keeping with the day so far.
The drinks reception started in The Great Drawing Room before people headed off outside as the sun started to reappear. I photographed the guests enjoying drinks and canapés before making my way up to the Juliet balcony for a big group photo of the entire wedding party. Family group shots followed before I took Rachel and Alex for a few photos of just the two of them – we were just in time as the April showers soon started!
Some great speeches followed the wedding breakfast up in The Long Gallery and by the time they had finished it was dry again outside so we took advantage of this and made time for a few more lovely photos of the happy couple. Then it was time to cut the cake before Rachel and Alex had their first dance, performed by the fantastic wedding band, The CoverUps! I finished with one more photo of the bride and groom before leaving them, their friends and their family to enjoy the rest of their night.