Justine & Mat’s Wedding at the Bower Hotel, Chadderton

Online Gallery

Before I write about the day itself, if guests would like to look at the online gallery, just click >here<.  You will need to register, but once you have, simply click onto the gallery name or >this link<.  You have to enter a password, which is the couple’s surname in lowercase, e.g. smith.  You can view the photos free of charge, or choose to buy prints which are all professionally printed.

The wedding day

Justine & Mat hadn’t had the easiest build up to their wedding, with Mat a serving soldier in the Royal Signals and not getting much leave, and poor Justine hadn’t been well.  However, I’d managed to meet up with them both on a rare dry day at the Bower Hotel a few weeks before, and things were finally on the up!

I was especially looking forward to the wedding as I hadn’t shot a wedding where the groom would be in uniform, or at the venue before, and not least, in my eyes at least was the fact all the wet May weddings were now behind me and I was hoping June would be dry, and it was (just)..

I began as usual, with photographs of the bride getting ready, and Justine was being helped by her two lovely daughters (who were absolute stars all day, by the way).  I got some great unposed reportage style photographs here, and I just love how they look in black & white 🙂  As usual I was running up and down the stairs trying to mix the getting ready shots with the groom, his ushers, and guests arriving, and the ceremony room being prepared, and as usual managed to capture it all 🙂

The ceremony itself was lovely, with two readings, and after the normal photos it was off outside to try and get photos in the hotel’s “secret garden”.  Unfortunately, the big secret that day was how completely and utterly sodden the grass was, and I’m afraid everyone got their feet wet (sorry ladies) at least a little bit.  But it was in a good cause and we had no choice really – so thanks to all for going along with me and making sure that the bride and groom have the fab photos they do 🙂

The rest of the day went without *almost* without any hitches, from photographs in around around the hotel, to the wedding breakfast itself. I say ‘almost’ as the Toastmaster did keep trying to sabotage my day – for example by telling me speeches would be in 10 minutes time and he’d come and get me, and then them starting after 5 minutes without any sign of him (grrrr).  But when that’s the only blip, things are pretty good 😉

After the wedding breakfast, I drove Justone and Mat up to the old Ironworks at Park Bridge, which is a great location for photographs, and to have a walk – I recommend it to anyone in the area.  I really think these “mini breaks” from the wedding day work well, because it allows the bride and groom a little bit of time to themselves in an otherwise busy and often emotionally tiring (but wonderful) day.

My day ended as it usually does, with pictures from the dancing, and I employed my usual technique of off camera lighting to get some great shots on the dancefloor. and then, it was home-time!

Help for Heroes

Not all our brave military make it back from tours of duty in one piece, and increasingly, we all know of someone who has lost a loved one, or whose husband/brother/son/daughter/wife has returned from Afghanistan without a limb, or with other serious injuries.  In case anyone reading this doesn’t know, the UK has a great charity helping wounded servicemen and women.  Very often the NHS can’t properly provide what they need to live their lives fully on their return to the UK.  Help for Heroes fills this void and their website is here: Help for Heroes.  Please click on the link and donate if you are able to.


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My photography and advice to brides has recently been featured in several issues of Your NorthWest Wedding magazine, and in the February/March edition I am proud to have been chosen for the cover and a 4 page spread!!

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