South Lodge Wedding …. this place!! Wow.
So this wasn’t my first time shooting at this fantatsic venue, but we’ll come back to the venue in amoment.
Mid week, a Wednesday, yep that’s right, it’s becoming very popular to get married mid week these days. I love it.
This was the wedding of the beautiful Lucy & Ashleigh. What a great couple, very down to earth, up for a giggle. It came across vividly in the photos, which I adore.
The day started off at Lucy’s family home in Haywards Heath. Greeted with smiley faces and to my suprise everyone was so calm. Letting the bride know things are under control always seems to help. However I didn’t need to. Tom, (Lucy’s lad), was such a great help, nothing was too much trouble and being taller than myself enabled us to manover the wedding dress to heights I couldn’t reach for photos. Cheers Tom! The whole family were so relaxed.
Make up and hair was under way. I fell into a nice relaxing environment, knowing the makeup artist had things chill. Starting with details of the preps, following with some wedding portrait photography and overalls. Always good to get the intro imagery in the bag.
Next was the dress and bridal jewellery, shoes etc. Done.
A few formal snaps and I zipped off to the church. Just a few minutes down the road and I had the camera back in hand. Clicking away focusing first off with general views of the church and the decoration contributed by the mother of the groom and groom’s sister. ‘Hilary’ decided to take it upon herself to learn flouristry! Giving this gift to the couple with the most amazing display of beautful flowers leading from the church grounds & entering into the church, which was lovely. Can’t imagine what time she must have been there in the morning!
Ashleigh was already present and a little nervous, which is always grounding and great for images. He was keeping a sneeky eye on his watch to ensure timings were being kept. Little Milo (their young boy) was running around enjoying everyones comapany. Tom was giving the Bride away and so was still with mum.
A few images of the rings and the bride arrived, so back to action stations!
With everyone ready, Lucy glided down the isle to meet with her groom, a quick loving glance and the ceremony was underway. Smiles all round.
No hiccups, a few happy tears and we wrapped up with the signing of ceremony.
Once everyone had exited the church I snapped a quick silhouette of the couple whilst inside against the light beaming through the big glass doors. Holy Trinity Cuckfield has a small twist of modern features with the usual traditional stone build which is great for wedding photography.
Outside the couple were greeted with a confetti isle and followed with a splattering of formal wedding group shots.
Beforehand the groom arrived at the church in a white Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 Spyder, which the couple used to travel to the amazing venue.
I met them at South Lodge Hotel shortly after snatching a few breakfast room details. Utilizing the supercar out side the main reception the couple had a couple of romantics whilst still seated. Ash is an engineer/race car engine builder so this was apt for such an occassion, being a massive petrol head! He even does a fair amount of karting, which I’ve been told you’ll always find Lucy by his side. The table names in the breakfast room were named after race circuits that I’m guessing they have been to.
Next to come were a few romantics, the wedding coordinator was keen to get this important section done before any mad rush to get everyone into the wedding breakfast. Which I totally appreciate.
We went in the buggy round the vast grounds at South Lodge. There is a brand new Spa too which I strongly suggest a visit if you’ve never been there before. Such beautiful architecture with cedar wood cladding, outdoor terrace, outdoor hydrotherapy pool and swim pond. With a garden roof to ensure it blends with the surounding grounds. Beautiful. Something you’d expect to see on Grand Designs.
First stop was the lake, which made great wedding photography, after just a few moments we were off again to ensure we covered enough ground whilst not leaving the wedding guests for too long.
Next stop, the long golden grasses, where Tom was yet again on hand to assit with the dress and keep Milo occupied when needed. Onto the rock garden for yet another few wedding romantics, and back to the venue main building.
Followed up with more details, and guests socialising. The entertainment was a guy I’ve met before whilst photographing Hilary’s 60th celebrations at The Arora Hotel Gatwick.
Strangley enough his name is Curtis The Swing Singer, (Curtis is Ashleigh’s surname too), he’s a lovely guy with an amazing voice, he’s currently touring playing a role in the Jersey Boys, look him up!
Into the breakfast room for food, so I had a little break and had a bite to eat myself. Time flew by and the speeches soon followed, starting with the Father of the Bride, Ashleigh and finishing with Best Man Greg. Then to everyones suprise, Ashleigh’s 9 year old neice Zinnia stood alone to read her impromptu speech which was remarkable. Well done Zin! Such a little star. I’ve known her since newborn, having photographed her baby portraiture, toddler portraits, family portraits and with her horses. Emily, her mum is horse mad!!! (Also an old school friend, I’ve even photographed her and Bruce’s wedding).
Cake cutting was surrounded by new arriving evening guests with an fresh injection of excitment, which quickly followed by the most beautiful first dance. Family and friends clearly egar to get on the dance floor, they were joined with the happy couple and the party errupted. Music boomed, colourful lights danced around the room and drinks were flowing.
Time for me to leave, said my goodbyes and wished the newlyweds a fab honeymoon in Morocco.
Congratulations to the new Mr & Mrs Curtis!!!
PS… had to drop this RAW wedding photo in, look at the ‘bottom’ right guys ha ha, got to love kids!!