‘Oh my…What can I say. I have loved your work for a long time, and booked you straight away. Your work is phenomenal. But this. This is beyond.’
September 4th 2020. May 7th 2021. April 8th 2022. We got there in the end. That’s become a common expression in the last year or so, but for Bonnie and Robbie they really hit the jackpot on April the 8th. Yes, they had to go through the rigours of postponements, but it was so worth the wait for all concerned. The sense of celebration and the outpouring of emotion was as explosive as the burst of confetti that followed their marriage ceremony.
The day all started for Bonnie and Co. just a few minutes walk from Marylebone Town Hall. Photographing people ‘being themselves’ is sometimes harder than it sounds. Not so, when there is joy and friendship in abundance – this is why I love photographing the early stages of a wedding. The anticipation, the nerves, the laughter – and the soundtrack. After a couple of hours we all headed off and I then tracked down Robbie and friends who were having a swift shandy in the local pub. The mood there was equally uplifting and from what I had witnessed so far, I knew this was going to be a day as special as it was unique.
After a touching ceremony, B&R were as tradition dictates pelted with a flurry of confetti. After a bit of catching up it was time for everyone to head to Brunswick House on a couple of London buses. The journey to Vauxhall was a non-stop riot made all the more amusing by the constant swaying of the lanky buses as they negotiated each and every corner they encountered. We got there in the end.
Brunswick House it a bit of hidden gem. Well, hidden in plain sight at least. Amongst the towering glass shrines to progress lies this Georgian Mansion that just refuses to budge. A defiant Gandalf courageously shouting ‘You shall not pass!’ sprang to mind instantly. The enigma continued inside as all manner of paintings, photographs, and sculptures adorned the walls wherever you look. Effortlessly, timelessly cool.
As is occasionally the way, not all of B&R’s nearest and dearest could be there. Given how love and loss are so intricately bound together, the speeches are usually a key part of any wedding. With Bonnie’s father sadly no longer with us, and her brother away with Covid, the speeches were always going to be emotionally charged. There was never really a chance of a dry eye in the room.
I grew up watching Bonnie’s father on Saturday evening telly along with my sister as we jostled for position on the sofa. Clearly there was an abundance of love and respect for her father, and the volume of emotion was enough to bring a lump to the throat and a tear to the eye.
There was laughter too. Lots of it. From an expertly delivered Best Man’s speech to the charming eloquent words of Bonnie’s Bridesman, there was as much joy as there was time to reflect when Bonnie and her brother (via video call) spoke about what the day meant to them.
There’s nothing like a limoncello or two to put the spring back in your step. So, before the party really got underway this was a welcome opportunity before moves were cast upon the dance floor. The party downstairs brought a whole new element to the day at Brunswick similar in feel to a good old fashioned lock-in, and I couldn’t have thought of a better way to kick off the evening’s celebrations.
Congratulations Bonnie and Robbie, we got there in the end! 🙂