Tom booked me for his William Cecil Stamford wedding photography earlier this year. Being in the military he was unable to meet for a consultation beforehand, but loved the natural photographs on my website so decided to book. After the groom emailed me their online wedding invitation I was so excited about capturing their big day. Stamford is a beautiful town just 2 hours from Manchester and it was my first time working here as a wedding photographer.
An autumn wedding at the William Cecil Stamford
Anna and Tom opted for an autumn wedding. Autumn is a beautiful time of year for a wedding – the array of colours are fantastic. In true British style we experienced autumnal showers at their best. It pretty much rained all day except for about 10 minutes during the meal where the bride and groom popped out for some quick photographs within the William Cecil gardens. Rain didn’t put a dampener on the day whatsoever. Being a very adventurous couple (the bride and groom are both experienced skiers and love to mountain bike during the summer) they just grabbed some umbrellas and laughed! The bride holding up her dress made for some great photos as she walked down the Stamford high street outside of the William Cecil. Couples should definitely not be sad if it rains on their wedding day. Rain provides so much opportunity for humorous wedding photos! The best images are made by the people in them.
Set in the picturesque village of Stamford, the William Cecil is a fantastic wedding venue which so much character. If you are getting married in the summer, they do beautiful outdoor ceremonies too. For engaged couples that desire an autumn or winter wedding, this venue is perfect with three listed buildings on offer and plenty of indoor space.
To begin the day I started photographing bridal preparation at Anna’s parents house. All the girls were getting ready in their matching silk dressing gowns and drinking bubbly. Anna chose an elegant silk gown with lace detailing. The gown was picked from Hannah Elizabeth Bridal Boutique. This bridal shop was owned by Anna’s friend which made the dress extra special. Her bridesmaids wore lovely pastel blue dresses.
St Andrew’s Church Alwalton ceremony
The ceremony was held at St Andrew’s Church in Alwalton which is a beautiful stone church. Groomsmen in military attire really looked the part as they greeted guests ready to witness the marriage. Afterwards, they also made a guard of honour for the newly weds. The saber arch was really impressive and was an important element of their wedding photography. Following on from the ceremony I photographed the newly weds at the entrance to Burghley House. The Burghley House gates are an iconic backdrop leading up to this incredible building.
A British themed marquee reception
A marquee was used to host the reception. During the guest arrival I focussed on capturing natural photos. Once the canapés had been eaten it was then time for their William Cecil Stamford wedding photography. To begin, we headed for The Bull And Swan pub for some relaxed portraits. We also had fun taking pictures on the zebra crossing which is a short walk away. Even with the heavy rain, there are so many opportunities for William Cecil wedding photography that the bad weather didn’t affect us. Thank you to the groomsmen who were on hand to hold the umbrellas!
Anna and Tom selected a traditional British wedding theme. This was executed perfectly with bunting and delicate flower centrepieces. A naked cake was on display at the back of the marquee whilst subtle flower details were added for finishing touches. Naked wedding cakes are the perfect choice for couples who want to create a British picnic feel.
Incorporating their love of the outdoors, Anna and Tom decided to name each table after a different ski resort. In addition to this, a pair of vintage red skis were used as a decoration. Being an avid snowboarder myself I thought this was a great touch.
After dinner the bride and groom played a quick game of croquet. This quintessentially British game has to be one of the most bizarre. Watching a bride whack a ball with a mallet whilst in her beautiful wedding dress was a first!
Now on to the best part of the day; the speeches! Out of the hundreds of weddings I have photographed, this has to be the most embarrassed I have ever seen a groom. I got some great photos of Tom at the top table squirming as the best man revealed some hilarious stories. As he recalled past moments, Tom had a beer in one hand and buried his face in the other. Taking photos of the speeches has never been so fun! Luckily, Anna didn’t seem to mind as she was laughing the whole way through. I’m pretty sure that the groom had to look over at one point just to check if they were still married! I love taking natural photos with real emotion.
Despite the persistent rain, Anna and Tom’s wedding was fantastic and a pleasure to photograph from start to finish. With incredibly well maintained gardens, the possibilities for William Cecil wedding photography are endless. I can’t wait to be back in Stamford again soon taking more pictures. For more of my work take a look at featured weddings.