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The Wedding of Kate & Hywel at St Mary’s and St Nicholas Church, Anglesey, North Wales
Most of my wedding bookings come to me via face to face meetings at wedding fayres, or people finding me on the internet, or referrals, or other advertising. Kate & Hywel’s wedding was none of these. They’d actually contacted a photographer I know who works in North Wales, but he was (luckily) already booked. We’re both part of the same professional group, and he kindly asked if anyone would be interested, and I was and got contacted by Kate. We met up on Angelsey on a blisteringly hot Easter Friday. We’d made a little trip of it as it was the Easter holidays and had stayed overnight at the Bulkeley Hotel (hottest rooms EVER). On our second day I went off to meet Kate & Hywel and flog my wares, and my wife Beverley took our daughter Siena around Beaumaris, finding some lovely ice creams and some Snow White croc shoes en route! From the moment I arrived on Anglesey I knew I’d enjoy this wedding, as I tend to work in the North West, and a change is really inspiring sometimes. Plus Anglesey itself is beautiful, Beaumaris was charming, and the locations for the wedding really amazing…Thankfully we got on really well, Kate & Hywel loved my work, and so 3 months later I went back to shoot their wedding 🙂
I spent the night before at a very nice Premier Inn just outside Bangor in North Wales – lovely quiet cool rooms, I slept like a baby and had a monster breakfast to set me up for a long day and long drive home at the end. I should add it had rained torrentially on Friday, and although the forecast was for steady improvement on the wedding day, it was hard to feel confident when I woke up to greyness and drizzle…
By the time I headed over to shoot the bridal preparations at Kate’s parents farm, it was however brightening up and the rain had stopped – the forecast appeared right. As I drove down the lane to Gyfynys Farm I saw the marquee for the first time and was really impressed. Kate’s dad had worked really hard to make the gardens and paths look great and hopefully my photos capture some of that hard work.
When I arrived to meet Kate it was the normal scene when brides get ready so as usual I wasn’t fazed. It’s a long time since my first wedding when I arrived to be greeted by the bride and bridesmaids all in their underwear. I didn’t know where to look! 100 weddings later, I don’t think I’d notice half the time. Kate, however was super organised and almost ready when I got there, so no worries about being late for the church. I took my normal mix of reportage and posed photos both in the farm and in the marquee and then it was time to head down to the church.
The church (link above) had become fairly famous recently, having been featured on Songs of Praise in May and also during the coverage of Prince William and that other Kate’s wedding. I’d had a brief look inside when I met up with Kate and Hywel at Easter, but a wedding is a different thing altogether, and churches, especially those dating back to c.1400, are often much darker than they appear. Thankfully the light was great and was able to get some wonderful photographs of the ceremony from the front, the back and even from up on the gallery by the organist.
When we exited, twe were blown over by the wind. (Well, ok it wasn’t quite that strong, but it was close.) It stayed very cold and windy for the rest of the day, which kind of rubbed salt in our wounds as it had been so very hot & sunny when we met up here at Easter… that’s the UK for you! Kate was very brave and didn’t complain, and after photographs outside the church we moved to Beaumaris Castle, built by Edward 1 c.1295 (aka Longshanks, he wasthe nasty English King who had William Wallace drawn and quartered in real life and in Braveheart). The castle is both quite ruined and quite intact – the walls are fairly intact but inside there’s not a huge amount left. It’s very scenic and interesting though, and was fun a location to work in.
After leaving the castle we headed back inland to join family and guests in the splendid marquee. Everyone was inside sheltering from the biting wind, though Kate and Hywel did venture out with me for photos around the farm and in the fields. After the wedding breakfast(which I was treated to also – thanks) we also took a trip to the Beaumaris seafront, but it was just too cold there – even for me 😉
My shooting day ended with photographs of the evening dancing and cake cutting, and then it was a long 2 hour drive home and a really good night’s sleep!!
I’d like to thank Kate & Hywel for picking me as their photographer, because I really love my work , especially when I can work at fabulous locations, and with lovely people 🙂 Thanks again!