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Northbrook Park
Lea & Mike

October 28, 2021

‘We don’t even know where to begin. Thank you, thank you, thank you. These photos could not sum up our day more perfectly… just pure love and laughs!! You are incredible and we are so lucky to have found you. I shall be recommending you to everyone I know.’

“I’m so sorry about the chaos!” is often an expression I hear upon meeting up with the Bride and her entourage on the morning of the wedding. When I knocked on the door and Lea answered with a smile, she offered a similar comment. Make no mistake – wedding photographers LOVE it when they’re thrown into the deep end at first contact. At no point has this been truer than when I followed Lea through the house and into Ground Zero. The endless energy and sense of celebration was palpable and I knew immediately that this was going to be a fun packed day to photograph.

Forgive me for offering a sporting metaphor, but when in Wimbledon. No, I’m not talking about the tennis, that’s far too obvious…I’m referring to Wimbledon’s football nutters of the 1980’s – aka The Crazy Gang. For future reference whenever this sobriquet is mentioned I will of course be referring to Lea’s security team. Vinnie, you know who you are. So with that aside, The Crazy Gang were a riot from the off, whether they were in the make-up chair or practicing a speech safely out of earshot of Lea. Speaking of, the speech practice-run either had everyone either reaching for a tissue or fighting off a rising lump in the throat – it was going to be that kind of day, uproarious laughter interspersed with highly poignant moments.

Lea putting on her dress was another moment in the day where laughter gave way to a quieter, more pensive tone. Sure enough though, the nerves had raised the adrenaline levels and it was time to head to church. After making sure that one of the Bridesmaids DIDN’T take off in her taxi with my camera bag :), I too headed through Wimbledon and on to the church where Mike and his mates were awaiting our arrival…

Once all the guests had arrived and taken their seats, Lea and her father walked up the aisle and the marriage ceremony was underway. As ever, this is one of the most poignant parts of a wedding to photograph (if not the most), and it was very clear to see just how much it meant to Lea, Mike, their friends and families. After walking back down the aisle Lea and Mike got a chance to say hello to all who had made it, before jumping in a black cab and heading for Northbrook Park on the Hampshire/Surrey border.

Reception at Northbrook Park was held in The Vine Room and as guests were being ushered through to the dining room, Lea and Mike headed outside with me to get a few intimate pictures before the dying of the light. Speeches were eloquent, hilarious and in plentiful supply – with a couple of The Crazy Gang praising and occasionally dropping the couple in it. I’m sure some people shy away from the idea of making a speech if they can help it. These guys were not that.

Dinner followed the speeches, and before you knew it, all were fed and watered and ready for the band to kick off. It was an awesome way to get the evening party going and the day as a whole was very special and I was just so pleased to be able to capture it. And to think Lea enquired as to my availability just 20 days before the big day…

An awesome day, so a big thank you to Lea and Mike (and The Crazy Gang) for such a warm welcome and such an epic series of moments to photograph!

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