Suzanne and Rob chose the summer solstice for their Woolley Grange wedding yesterday, in a midsummer themed day of celebration with close friends & family. Despite the weather being inappropriately rainy and blustery, the atmosphere of the day was amazing.
Suzanne and Rob had arranged a pink and blue tent for their ceremony, with their flower maidens sprinking rose petals ahead of Suzanne entering the ceremony with her mother. Their ceremony included everyone singing Morning has Broken and What a Wonderful World, and Rob made promises to Suzanne’s daughter Cordelia about caring for her, before she read an extract from The Velveteen Rabbit.
After a few drinks, the party sat down to for a celebration banquet of many courses on a long table set inside another tent. Woolley Grange’s Claire makes final touches to the table settings and a wonderful summery detail – an Emma Bridgewater customised jug.
In between each one, guest names were selected, with each person doing a ‘turn’. They had been ‘warned’ ahead of time this would be happening – some spoke a few words about Suzanne and Rob, some sang and others read poems and played musical instruments. One friend brought his electronic keyboard and played a beautiful piano piece – it was only when he sat down that he mentioned he had composed it especially for the day.
Rob & Suzanne and I ducked out between courses & the rain to catch some photographs of them in the grounds and in their wedding tent. I asked if they would like to dance, and they did so, with Suzanne serenading The Water Is Wide to Rob. It seemed especially fitting, since Rob had earlier sung to Suzanne during the banqueet, after having practised for several months.
When I left at 9pm, the weekend of celebrations, which had started with a cricket match (complete with glassware trophy) on the Friday was in full swing. Staff had lit a fire in the main lounge, a cheese course, coffee and wedding cake were ready and I can only imagine how long the partying continued.