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Quintessentially British Wedding with Rustic Charm

When and how did you and your partner meet?

“My partner and I met when we were at school and started dating when we were in sixth form”

What was the proposal like?

Tom planned an extra special and thoughtful proposal full of childhood memories, and made sure the whole event was shared with family.

“My partner Tom proposed to me in Cornwall on a secluded section of Daymer Bay beach near Rock. It was very intimate as the proposal took place early in the morning when not many people were around so it felt like we had the beach to ourselves. Just as we had got to the water’s edge, Tom suggested we skim some stones for a bit of fun and as I turned around he was on one knee with a ring in his hand. What made the proposal even more personal was my parents and grandparents were following closely behind us unbeknown to me so they were able to capture and experience the moment with us. The location of the proposal was very special to me as I have been holidaying in Cornwall with my family every year since I was born and Daymer Bay beach holds many memories so it was extra special that they were able to be there too.”

Did you have an inspiration for the theme of your wedding? If so, what was that?

The main theme for Jess and Toms special day was centred around their strong Dorset roots and Jess was the perfect Dorset Bride.

“Once we started talking about what our dream wedding would be like, we knew we wanted it to take place in our home county of Dorset where we grew up. My partner’s family have lived in the beautiful village of Child Okeford for many generations and have an ancestral connection to St Nicholas church which dates back centuries, so we felt it fitting to get married there to honour that legacy. When choosing our dream venue we were keen to pick somewhere that was quintessentially British with a rustic charm and lots of character. As we got married in the height of summer we opted for a simple colour scheme of sage, blush and white to complement the beautiful flowers in bloom around the grounds of our venue, the Hinton St Mary Estate in Sturminster Newton.”

What was it about your venue that drew you in?

Jess and Tom just knew their venue was the one straight away – much like trying on your wedding dress for the first time!

“As soon as we arrived at the venue, we knew it was the perfect place for us. We loved the rustic character of the tithe barn with the magnificent feature fireplace in the centre of the room and the grand portraits of the Pitt-Rivers family displayed around the barn, it felt like stepping back in time! The grounds surrounding the barn on the Hinton St Mary estate were also breathtaking and felt like something like from a Jane Austen novel. We also loved the relaxed vibe of the venue and the opportunity to have complete freedom over how we wanted to decorate the barn and the suppliers we used, which meant we were able to put our own spin on our wedding and merge tradition with more modern elements to reflect our tastes as a couple. Gail Thomas the wedding coordinator at the venue was also incredibly helpful and friendly which swayed our decision!”

Minster Bridal Bride Wedding Dress

What was your favourite part of the planning your wedding day?

Being able to tap into your hobbies and interests makes the planning and vision for the wedding that bit more personal!

“My favourite part of planning the wedding was setting up the venue the day before with my mum and bridesmaids. I really enjoy interior design and loved seeing my vision of a quintessential English wedding come to life as we were dressing the long banquet tables with candles and the stage with fairy lit birch trees.”

How did you spend the night before your wedding?

No jitters for Jess! Just a fab girly evening with the bridesmaids!

“The night before the wedding I stayed at the venue in one of the cottages with my bridesmaids and enjoyed a relaxed meal in the gardens on the Hinton St Mary Estate. I loved the fact that we were able to enjoy some calm and relaxing time at the venue before the big day and it felt like we were in the wedding bubble for longer! What made the night even more special was I shared a cottage with my four closest friends from childhood who were all my bridesmaids and we were able to reminisce about so many fond memories growing up and share lots of funny stories which helped me feel really calm and excited for the big day!” 

Jess & Tom Groonsmen Bridesmaid

What was your highlight of the special day?

It sounds like this day was filled with so many special moments

“Other than getting married and seeing my partner for the first time at the altar, one of my absolute favourite parts of the wedding was enjoying our reception drinks and canapes in the lower gardens of the St Mary Estate listening to the chilled sounds of Ibiza club classics played on a saxophone surrounded by my closest family and friends. There was such a buzz and it was lovely to step back and take it all in!”

What was your first dance song?

“Our first dance song was ‘You are the reason’ by Callum Scott and Leona Lewis. The lyrics are really personal to us and it felt like the perfect song to celebrate our first dance together as husband and wife.”

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