Last year and this have given us so many wonderful days of sunshine it is not surprising that we’ve chosen to celebrate on and around water.
The Thames at Windsor passes the edge of the racecourse and the jetty makes a perfect stage for a druid ceremony to take place with the castle behind.
The bride walked through a parade of trees past all the guests and down to the boat while close family and friends were on a French Brothers Boat (www.frenchbrothers.co.uk) moored by the racecourse and the readings were addressed on the jetty facing the guests on the riverbank.
The marquee and Searcys catering were already set up for imminent corporate hospitality at the races so it was possible to negotiate a deal on the food, drink and marquee.
The Richmond and Edgemont canal boats are available to hire for small groups. There is a feeling of pageantry when bunting and flowers and vintage dressing is used to decorate the boards and a wedding party are free to buy their own food and drink and enjoy an intimate environment for a sit down wedding reception with family on board and plenty of space for other guests on the river bank.
So if kingfishers, herons and ducks are part of your idea of romance this is a wonderful choice.
Of course a gorgeous al fresco setting with access to rivers, canals or the sea tends to be a choice made during the high season when the tariffs are more often than not up to twice the price of October to March. Monday to Thursday will generally be half the price of the rest of the week.
The type of ceremony will play a significant role in the choice of venue and now that there are so many venues offering a license for civil ceremonies and an already established relationship with neighbouring register offices increase the diversity and quality of your choice.
Cornwall at Polhawn Fort takes you and your 120 guests into coastal isolation for 3 or 4 days. (http://www.polhawnfort.com) complete privacy, views out to sea and access to the beach with a summer house if the weather is bad. There are several tariffs that cover 120 guests and the option to save a considerable amount by escaping corkage if you bring your own. Stunning in storm or sunshine. The best the British coast can offer with a 47foot yacht thrown in with the cost.
Of course we are always at the mercy of the weather but shelter is at hand and I always plan for sun first and keep the Met Office on speed dial for the week before. Wedding parties never let weather spoil a wedding.
Knee length wedding dresses and wellies on the beach are the new fashion and the photographer needs to be versatile with the sun on the sea and portraits against sea spray.
Photos kindly donated by Ian Hamilton www.ianH.co.uk
The latest seaside trend is the first beach hut setting where a legal wedding/or civil ceremony can take place on the sands under West Cliff in Bournemouth by this award winning company (http://www.beachweddingsbournemouth.co.uk).
These watery settings provide sunrises and sunset backdrops, natural light and fresh air, exclusive space, a long weekend, the feel of a day at the races, a beach outing, messing about on the river. Each experience can pretty much be tailored to any budget and be themed with a nautical, vintage, British summertime look.
If you would like to consider these or any other wedding ideas please contact Eleanor through the website or on 0203 371 1848.