Who proposed and how did you do it?
Kirk organised a party for my 21st Birthday. I had no idea he was going to propose, he got down on one knee in front of all of our family and friends. The best part about it, it was a fancy dress party and we were dressed as Peter Pan and Tinker bell.
What made you choose Manor By The Lake as a wedding venue?
We wanted to get married somewhere that we hadn’t been to before. We are at the age that everyone is starting to get married and we wanted somewhere that stood out. We fell in love with Manor by the Lake within minutes of being there. Cheltenham was close enough from Witney that our older family members were willing to travel there but far enough that the venue was unknown to many of the guests before the big day.
Stand out moment from your wedding party?
I think it has to be when my Chief Bridesmaid Naomi decided to have a worm competition against my 9 year old nephew on the dance floor. In fact she continued to do the move numerous times to the horror of the older guests.
What did each of you wear? Who was it by and what style did you go for?
I wore a Lyn Ashworth dress called ‘Lovers kiss’ from a small boutique in my hometown of Witney – Georgina Pimm. It was tight fitted with lace sleeves. Kirk wore a brown checked slim fit suit from Next. We both seemed to have gone down the classical route. I guess we both knew we wanted to have a timeless wedding look.
How would you describe your wedding décor and why did you choose that style/colour scheme?
Our colour scheme was very Autumnal and the whole style of our wedding was just a classic/timeless feel. We stuck with a lot of white but included the autumnal colours of browns and nudes. We used a lot of wood, twine, hessian and brass.
What food did you choose? Is there a reason for your choices?
Sausage and mash! We love good old English food and this went down a treat with all of our family and friends. It wasn’t on the original options but the chef was very accommodating to let us have this dish. We had chocolate fondant and Apple crumble cake for desserts and they were both absolutely delicious. We also had a hog roast at night, a Cotswold classic for any celebration and we were glad it was an option for the evening food.
What was the best line from your best man’s speech?
Rory started one of his anecdotes by saying he had met me before Kirk with a hesitant pause, the guests seemed to presume he was going to reveal I dated him first or something and there was ohs and gasps from the tables to where this was going to go. Thankfully that wasn’t the case. The punch line was Kirk saying to him “oh yeah, I know of Roberta she’s the one with the really big melon head!”
What were the 3 most important ‘must-haves’ at your wedding?
The first was definitely family! We knew some older members of our families who we really wanted to be there don’t like to travel far. So it put a parameter on where we could get married as we wanted to be quite local to Witney. We did stretch it a little further because Manor by the Lake is such an amazing venue.
The second was the venue. We needed to have the perfect venue for us. We wanted somewhere that was timeless, looked classic, had a English traditional feel to it but was also up to date and had the modern amenities you would want for a 21st century wedding. The Manor by the Lake ticked all those boxes and more.
The third was probably the photographer. I spent a lot of time researching photographers as I knew that after the wedding you are left with two things, the memories and the pictures. I am so thankful I found Jen Marino, I literally fell in love with her style of photography and her photos of our wedding are just amazing. Each one really captures everything we was going for style wise, she captured lots of priceless family moments and found the most amazing back drops that Manor by the Lake has.
What did you have as your wedding music? (Walking down the aisle, first dance etc) and why did you choose those songs?
For the ceremony we had a Pianist, Lucas Baily. He played ‘She’s Always a Woman’ by Billy Joel as I walked down the aisle, a song Kirk chose for me.
Our exit from the ceremony was ‘Walking on Sunshine’ by Katrina & The Waves. We wanted our exit to be upbeat and joyful.
Our first dance we had sung by an acoustic singer – Laura Jones. She sang our favourite song ‘Home’ By Edward Sharpe and the magnetic zeroes
How did you entertain your guests?
We didn’t have any entertainment in the day we just let the guests mingle, catch up and enjoy the amazing venue, food and drinks.
In the evening we had an acoustic singer to start after the breakfast, singing some of our favourite songs. She then performed for our first dance and then it went straight to a DJ for the rest of the night.
How did you both feel on the day?
I felt Nervous! Walking down the aisle was the scariest thing I have ever done. Kirk was exactly the same, he said he felt calm up until he met the registrars then it became real, apparently he was hanging out of the Maximillian room windows to try get air and people were joking he was trying to climb out to run away. Once we were stood in front of each other the nerves went away, a few tears came and we were just so happy at that moment. It is a feeling we both won’t ever forget! The rest of the day was just full of joy and happiness.
What moments stood out for you the most?
Definitely walking down the aisle and being stood there with Kirk, and just the realisation this is happening.
Seeing all our family and friends so happy and enjoying themselves throughout the day was pretty special.
Our first dance was also a great moment because it went so well and after that we knew all the bits we had planned to do like our vows, speeches, cutting the cake and dance was done and they had all been perfect!
Who/what made your day extra special?
Family, the venue, the weather, all our guests, our suppliers and all the staff at Manor by the Lake, all that combined just created the perfect day for us!
If you had 3 pieces of advice you could offer to future couples getting married, what would they be?
The day will fly by so just live in the moment and enjoy it! The nerves, the panic, the happiness and the joy all make part of a day you will never forget.
Pick a venue like Manor by the Lake! A venue you love but also has the staff and wedding experience to make your day run smoothly, you want to have full confidence that your wedding venue knows what it’s doing!
I’d also definitely say pick your photographer carefully. Firstly because of the photos, you want a style and quality that you are going to really cherish forever. Secondly, a lot of your alone time as a couple during the day will be when your photographer is taking you off for your photos. You want your photographer to be someone you both feel relaxed around and can be yourselves, and also someone who will let you enjoy yourselves whilst being photographed. Jen definitely did that.
Photographer: Jennifer Marino
Flowers by: Classic Flowers, Witney
Catering: Manor by the Lake
Entertainment: Pianist – Lucas Baily, Acoustic Singer – Laura Jones, DJ- MbtL
The Dress: Lyn Ashworth from Georgina Pimm, Witney
Hair: Jessica Eldridge
Beauty: Shirley Reed