Yesterday I photographed the wedding of Tori & Marc in Spaldwick and at The Chequered Skipper in Ashton, in Cambridgeshire.

I hope you enjoy our the story of this special day!

While Clare headed off to photograph the chaps preparations, I joined Tori and the girls at Lower Farm Bed and Breakfast in Barnwell.

Bubbles were being poured while Tori was having her make-up beautifully applied by Emma Shipley

The beautiful wedding gown was by Suzanne Neville

Flora by Sarah Haines

Flower girl Alice approved of the lovely hair work done by Sam Goold!

Meanwhile, over the flat arable farmland of Cambridgeshire, Clare joined Marc and his best man in the thatched village of Spaldwick

Interestingly, we photographed a brilliantly countrified horses & tweed wedding of Mark & Tori’s pals Katie & Sam last May (here on the blog), and these champagne flutes were their table settings!

A colleague of Marc’s had informed them of an old wives tale that said to ensure good wedding weather you have to bury a sausage in your garden the night before your wedding!  First I’ve heard!  But after dinner the night before, Tori & Marc dug a hole in the garden (with a spoon!) and threw in a Waitrose chipolata! Can’t hurt to use Waitrose?!  During the morning the sausage clearly hadn’t kicked in, but later in the day the old wives worked their magic!

A few pints of the old Dutch courage in The George before the ceremony

The ceremony was at Tori & Marcs local Spaldwick Parish, Church of Saint James The Great.

After a relaxing morning, team bride were helping Tori into her wedding dress

There’s a story behind this image.  As Tori’s dad wasn’t at the wedding, Mark joined her at the church door to walk her down the aisle.

I like how this photograph tells that story

While the wedding registers were signed, Tori’s uni pal and former flat mate Christopher Horn sang a beautiful song.

I like the symmetry, contrast and detail in this one.

The wedding reception was in the outrageously picturesque thatched village of Ashton, part of the Ashton estate owned by the Rothchild family.

The village is filled with beautiful strutting pheasants (& their nightmarish shrieks and droppings!)

In 1996 disaster struck the Chequered Skipper when a fire gutted the pub when the thatch caught alight.  It was completely rebuilt & restored (though lightened and modified from its original) according to the specifications of renowned heritage architect John Robbins, and is now run by landlords Ian and Colin Campbell, who reopened the pub and restaurant in 1997.

Once called the Three Horse Shoes, it was renamed by Dame Miriam Rothchild to The Chequered Skipper after a rare butterfly.

I was informed by Tori that the ultramarine colour background, seen around the pub and village, is the family colour of the Rothchilds.

By the time the reception drinks were served the sausage clearly kicked in and the sun started to shine!

It was great to see Katie & Sam again! We had a blast at their wedding (literally – joining them the day before for a clay pigeon shooting birthday/pre-wedding party!)

Clare & I took Tori & Marc out into the village for a round of portraits.

While it’s arguably a very classic portrait – two people stood next to one another – I like how it captures the full-length outfits & details, topped with champagne & natural smiles, in beautiful light, with a lovely depth of field.  Happy days.

It’s so nice to have this low sunshine to have a bit of fun in.

Their pre-wedding shoot certainly helped loosen them up for the portraits (see the blog of highlights shot up in Leeds here)

After the portraits we quickly ran through the family groups.


Then had a bit of a laugh with the wedding party pics!

Inside the chequered skipper the wedding breakfast room was set, with a brilliant table plan and washing line of wedding photos of their near and dear’s big days!

Tori thinks that her mum may be the only person in the entire world who likes sugared almonds as a wedding favour, so instead, to represent her Northern roots, inside the place settings were Pontefract Cakes – small, round liquorish sweets, embossed with an image of Pontefract Castle.

Their good pal Phil, an MC by profession, took the role of Master Of Ceremonies through the day.

Speeches were simply brilliant.  Hilarious and from the heart.

After dinner, the light was so beautiful we decided to hit the village green for a second round of smooches!

It’s fun playing with light at this time of day, and in spite of being taken within moments of each other, the above and below images use three different approaches. Above left had a zoomed, off-camera flashgun to add light, above right used the available natural light and below was backlit with a flash from behind.

As the light began to fade, the evening celebrations got into full swing!

We did a few shots of Tori’s Hens (above, and who promptly bullied her into chugging her champagne!) and Harper Adams uni pals (below)

An inebriated collection of stags were rounded up for a teamshot arguably a little too late! 😉

After first dance to Tom Baxter’s ‘Better’

Then we left the gang to get down with the band!

Fantastic day hey!?

It was so lovely to hang out with Tori & Marc, their ace friends and family, to visit such a beautiful area of England and to be blessed with sunshine by the chipolata!

Happy days.  Here’s to a fantastic life together and an ace honeymoon in the Maldives!

x Barnaby & Clare x