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Real Wedding At Swancar Farm By Paul Massey

Hannah & Jonny’s Real Wedding | Paul Massey Photography

In sickness and in health, a marriage of two doctors 

How did you meet – tell us a little about yourselves?

We met when we were working together as Doctors on Intensive Care at Northampton General Hospital. Jonny is a consultant so he was actually my boss! We were friends for a couple of years before we fell in love!

Tell us about the proposal?

Jonny proposed after we had been living together for about 6 months. We went on Holiday to Jamaica. I had a good idea that Jonny might propose as he wasn’t very subtle about it! I imagined it would be in the evening so had planned every outfit, complete with shoes and jewellery. In fact, Jonny proposed at 9.30am on the first morning, in the Caribbean Sea! It was absolutely perfect and meant we then had the rest of the holiday to celebrate.

How did you find the wedding planning process?

I LOVED it! I’m a bit of a control freak so I had a spreadsheet for everything, but I loved planning it. I even considered changing careers to become a wedding planner once it was over. Jonny may say there were moments where I became a bridezilla, but in general, I think I was quite calm and thoroughly enjoyed planning every aspect of it.

What was your biggest worry?

That something wouldn’t go to plan. Someone once told me ‘Something always goes wrong on the day and the sooner you accept that the sooner you will feel calmer’. So I was so worried something big would go wrong… like the registrars having the wrong date or something. In fact, the only thing that went ‘wrong’, was the day before, the car company rang and said the car we wanted had broken down and had to go in to be fixed. It was meant to be pearlescent cream. They said they could provide the same car in silver and would add in extra champagne, so it worked out perfectly!

How did you manage your budget?

Errrr, I’m not sure we did! We tried to be thrifty where we could. I handmade all of our stationery and we used artificial flowers for the centrepieces. Plus I sing in an 8-piece singing group, so they were happy to provide entertainment whilst we signed the register, for free. But otherwise, we did get a bit carried away! Luckily we have paid it all off now, and it was the best day, so it’s OK!

How did you choose your vendors?

We used a lot of recommendations, such as the hair stylist, makeup artist and flower company. The cake company I found through doing research and the lady offered a really personal touch when designing it, so I loved that. For the photographer, we went to a wedding fair and met Paul Massey at his stand. We took one look at the photos on display and knew we HAD to have him for the wedding!

What made you decide on your venue?

As soon as we arrived at Swancar Farm, we just knew it was where we wanted to get married. My parents used to live in an old farmhouse and it had the same feel so I just thought it was perfect. We liked the fact we would have exclusive use of it and the staff were so helpful and welcoming, especially Hayley our wedding coordinator.

How did you manage your guest list?

We found this quite difficult because we both have quite big families and a large circle of friends. The size of the ceremony room at Swancar Farm set our limit so we had to stick to that (although we ended up going slightly over and poor Hayley had to squeeze in a few extra chairs!)

Tell us about the dress!

It was a Benjamin Roberts strapless, ivory lace dress with a mermaid silhouette. It was my perfect dress!!

What did your groom wear?

Jonny wore traditional navy pinstripe tail suit with a white shirt and ivory cravat.

What did the Bridesmaids & Groom’s Party wear?

The best man wore the same as Jonny and the Dads and groomsmen wore the same but with a navy cravat. The bridesmaids wore long navy dresses with a bejewelled neckline and the flower girls wore ivory dresses and little tiaras!

Flowers, cakes, stationery – tell us about your style!

The flowers were simple but beautiful. They were ivory in colour with large avalanche roses being the main feature. My bouquet was teardrop shape and absolutely beautiful. The cake again was quite simple, ivory icing with edible lace detail, navy ribbon and a sparkly ‘H & J’ on the top. The stationery was handmade and again was ivory and navy.

What food and drink did you choose?

We chose Prosecco and beers for the welcome drinks, champagne for the toast and a selection of wines for the tables. We had a choice of soup or parfait for the first course followed by lamb with red wine or chicken chasseur and finally sticky toffee pudding or chocolate something. I can’t actually remember as I didn’t eat a thing all day! In the evening we had a buffet including a cheese tower – I’m told it tasted lovely, but I was too overwhelmed to eat it!

How did you start your wedding day morning?

Jonny was at a nearby hotel and had a lovely relaxing morning with the best man. I had all my bridesmaids and flower girls with me at my parent’s house. I hadn’t slept a wink all night and was incredibly nervous. I couldn’t manage breakfast, but a glass of bubbly did help. The morning went so quickly considering I was in the shower at 5 am! The hairdresser and makeup artist were fantastic at getting everyone ready and before I knew it, it was time to get into my dress. It was the most nerve wracking and best morning of my life.

Tell us about your walk down the aisle!

I walked in to Christina Perri’s ‘A Thousand Years’. I thought I would be emotional, but I was just so excited to see Jonny and the moment I saw him I had the biggest grin on my face. I was so proud of my Dad who managed to keep it together….. well, just about!

What were the most memorable parts of the day?

My Dad seeing me in my dress for the first time and our drive to the venue.

Seeing Jonny for the first time at the end of the aisle.

Walking into the wedding breakfast together as husband and wife.

Our first dance

What song did you choose for your first dance?

Stevie Wonder – For Once In My Life

If anything, what would you do differently?

Not a single thing!

Where did you honeymoon?

2 weeks in Dubai. It was absolute luxury!

What was the funniest moment of the day?

Jonny and I were so nervous in the ceremony that we were giggling and talking to ourselves. The registrar had to remind us to listen so we knew what we were doing!

Did anything go wrong? Were there any surprises?

Nothing went wrong. Jonny surprised me with the large ‘LOVE’ letters in the disco and he also wrote a reading to be read in the ceremony. It was absolutely beautiful and a wonderful surprise.

What tips or advice do you have for couples planning their wedding?

Enjoy it because planning it is so much fun. Don’t get stressed (I didn’t heed this advice). Take a moment, just the two of you in the middle of the day, to stop and enjoy what is happening. It’s honestly the best day ever!

Is there anything else you want to tell us?

Yes! We are now expecting our first child!

Lydia Alborn

I have recently graduated from the University of Bath, completing a degree in Biology. I have always loved nature so spending four years learning all about it was amazing. I have now joined the Buckinghams team to help make your Buckinghams experience perfect. Whether I am editing blog posts or performing general admin tasks, I am here to spread wedding joy!

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