Jodie & Matthew - Pilgrims Rest, Battle
I have known Jodie since my early days in photography, she was a wedding dress model for a local wedding fair organiser I worked with quite a lot. Seeing her get to this point in her life, with a beautiful daughter and awesome husband is lovely and something we were so pleased to be a part of.
Pilgrims Rest was a new venue for us. One I had heard a lot about but never had the pleasure of shooting at. It is one of the oldest buildings in Battle and has so much character and history to it. After a brief tour of the venue Aleisha and I set to work.
Jodie was in the bridal suite, on the upper level of the building. A lovely space for Bridal prep. It was so easy to find a spot to hang the dress, and photograph the flowers and shoes. I also made sure to get a shot of Jodie's and her daughter's dress hanging up together, as it was a gorgeous mini version of her Mums.
Aleisha during this time had been getting some shots of the ceremony setup and decorations. Highlights included a crisp and popcorn bar!! I have seen sweet tables but crisps? Yes please. Matt arrived, got himself ready, and its was time for the ceremony to begin.
One of my favourite shot combos is both Matt and Jodies reaction to seeing each other in the ceremony for the first time. Due to there being two of us, we can get both angles on this and capture the moment in full. Going through the ceremony you may think that a 600 year old grade II listed building would be quite dark inside, but not Pilgrims Rest, the light shining in brought a beautiful warmth to the proceedings. Marla, Jodie and Matthews daughter really stole the show with her ring bearer duties. Her beautiful smile and excitement watching her mummy & daddy get married really was a highlight. It was smiles and cheers from all round the room when Jodie and Matt were pronounced husband and wife.
Post ceremony, we set up a confetti line for the bride and groom outside in the courtyard garden. This is something we like to organise on the day, it allows everyone to get a chance to throw the confetti and congratulate the happy couple as they walk through. It is also a great photo opportunity.
During the drinks reception, everyone enjoyed the drinks, especially a few unwanted guests! Jodies sister had sugar rimmed the glasses, they looked fantastic but were also too tempting for the summer wasps!
Myself and Aleisha set up the group shots in the beautiful courtyard garden with the backdrop of the historic venue. As this is an intimate venue it made the group shots easier as we normally need to chase guests around the grounds or bars! Whereas here everyone was within shouting distance.
Pilgrims Rest. Despite its wonderful features, doesn't have a huge amount in the way of grounds and gardens, what it has is lovely but sometimes it is nice to take the Bride and Groom for a wander. Thankfully we were able to take Jodie, Matt & Marla over to make use of the stunning backdrops of Battle Abbey which is literally next door. As this was considered a commercialised shoot, Jodie and Matthew did have to purchase access to the grounds which was easy enough to do through English Heritage and well worth it for the photographs.
After this we came back for speeches and afternoon tea at Pilgrims Rest. The speeches were an informal and intimate affair. Funny, sweet and emotional. Matthews Grandfather spoke first then Matthew himself.
After dinner it was time for garden games, like hook and duck and a coconut shy and enjoying the party. We were able to take Matt and Jodie off for another quick wander down the lane behind the venue for another few moments to themselves and a few more shots together. On our way back we stopped for a couple of shots at the front of the Abbey too.
It was then time to settle in for the evening with the first dance and entertainment, courtesy of Chris Anderson. We left off soon after the first dance after an awesome day with Jodie, Matthew and all their guests. Congratulations to this perfect little family.
Ceremony Venue: Pilgrims Rest
Hair & Make-up: Glamour Brides
Suit: Moss Bros
Garden Games: Rent Event
Balloons: Chocolate Ballons
Afternoon Tea: Connie & Cooper
Bar and Evening Food: Pissarros Brasserie
DJ and Singer: Chris Anderson
1st Aug 2019