Wedding ceremony: Great Malvern Priory
Wedding venue: Eastnor Castle
Is it necessary for a professional wedding photographer to make a visit to see the wedding venue before hand?
When it comes to a wedding i.e Eastnor Castle which is 256 miles from Newcastle (where I am based), I prefer to arrive at least a day early, so that I could make a visit to look around the place and to prepare lighting setup, test on locations. Having said that, sometimes due to other work commitment I am unable to visit the wedding venues: Malvern Priory Church and Eastnor Castle where my couple Janet and Ernest got married at. Therefore, I was a little bit worried at one time because I didn’t know how dark it is inside the castle, what are the rooms I could /allow to take photographs inside? Any restrictions? Will I be allowed to take any photographs during the church ceremony? What about the wedding coordinator at the Castle? Is he/she going to be helpful on the day? All these question marks came to my mind. But then again I thought I was there to capture the lovely couple’s big day. It is always the wedding people who come first and the moments. So, I told myself “Just enjoy it and go with the flow” 🙂
Janet & Ernest have been planning this wedding almost one and half years ago. Having heard what they have prepared for their wedding, I have been eagerly waiting for this day to come for a long long time. The first time to have the Chinese banquet (Chinese food!) inside the Castle and the last time the castle allowed the Chinese Sky Lanterns to be released. After seeing all these, I got to say that this is one of the best wedding I have photographed this year. I have done many castle’s wedding in the past i.e. Alnwick Castle, Dundas Castle, Wedderburn Castle. The Eastnor castle is one of the best venue I have been so far.
Apart from the luxurious wedding details, such as Janet’s grand princess-like Vera Wang wedding dress, it has the core elements that I believe every wedding should have, and that is Family, Friendship and Love. I once read from somewhere: “A life without love is like a year without a summer”. Everyone was so happy and helpful. There were moments when I was deeply touched i.e the singing from the church, the speeches given by Eric and Edwin, the Chinese tea ceremony, the speech given by Ernest to Janet (“Trust” at the Pitch Black Restaurant, London). On the day itself, I felt like I was having many assistants helping me do the job right. The wedding forecast mentioned that it was going to rain at some points on the day. Janet, Ernest and I were a bit worried when we were on the way to change to the horse carriage. As soon as we arrived, the rain stopped. Surely, it was meant to be. It was such a perfect day !
Ernest & Janet – Wedding at the Eastnor Castle