CIM Moor Hall Wedding Photography: Kirsty and Gareth
Kirsty and Gareth's wedding saw me travel around the M25 to CIM Moor Hall Hotel in Crookham. It was a day that would see me bump into some familiar faces and also have a lot of fun shooting the day in a gorgeous venue that offered a blend of old and modern. Below is a sample of CIM Moor Hall Wedding Photography from the day as well as the story of the day.
On the morning of the wedding I headed around the M25 from Kent to Berkshire. The last part of the drive was along the banks of the River Thames. I love this stretch of the Thames with all the big houses, the pleasure boats and wildlife. I arrived at Moor Hall in good time and got myself set up and ready for the day. In the old part of the venue, a 19th Century Manor House, Kirsty was getting her hair and make up done. The first thing she said was "Have you eaten? We've got bacon sandwiches so tuck in." Well, who am I to refuse a bacon butty!
Fuelled up for the day I made my way over to the newer part of the venue which included the bar and the Edinburgh Restaurant where the ceremony and wedding breakfast would take place. A two level room, it offered some unique angles to shoot from, including from the atrium looking down onto the bride and groom. The various walkways over the water gardens also provided some great possibilities for later in the day.
The room was busy getting dressed and prepped with sashes and flowers ready for the ceremony to start. Gareth was upstairs finishing off the bunting that was being hung from the railings of the atrium. After watching him open a gift from Kirsty I began capturing the guests arriving. And there was one of my best friends in the world (and former customer) Hannah with her kids and partner, James. This was the second wedding in recent months where Hannah was a guest. A lot of the guests were present at Liss and Chris' wedding in Hampshire several months earlier so these guys were completely at ease with me. It was great catching up with so many of them.
I returned to the Manor to capture the finishing touches of Bridal prep. We could see across the lawns to the Edinburgh Restaurant and the guests were making their way across the walkways to the room to take their seats. We were ready to go.
Gareth was welcoming people to the room and directing them where they could sit. The celebrant called him over to take his place and we were good to go. Kirsty made her way slowly across the walkways and everyone turned. I was up on the atrium and had a great view of this. Looking down on the scene I captured the moment she reached Gareth. They were directly below me at this point and it was such a unique view of the ceremony.
After tiptoeing back downstairs I took up my position for the remaining ceremony. This was a really bright and airy room. I'm not really a fan of moving around too much during the ceremony but the celebrant was ok with me doing it and the room is so big I could do it unnoticed. So I was able to get shots from different viewpoints and provide a variety of shots of the exchange of vows.
After the ceremony we did a selection of family shots in front of the Manor whilst the rest of the guests sipped drinks and the kids played giant Jenga and Connect 4 on the lawn. I kept nervously looking up. There were some heavy looking clouds floating about but so far the weather gods were playing ball. The day was flying along and after a period of drifting between guests and capturing the socialising and games of pool in the bar we made our way to the restaurant once more for the wedding breakfast.
I was on a table which normally I am not a fan of. Getting fed at a wedding is a bonus as far as I'm concerned so I normally say I'll find a quiet spot in the bar and eat there. But today I was on the same table as Hannah and James so I was in good company. Hannah's been a massive support for my business and she spent ages talking about the weddings I've shot recently and what her favourite images are.
The food was amazing and I was just about ready for a snooze to sleep it off but there was no chance of that as the speeches were about to start. These were so emotional and inspirational. A real tribute to overcoming the barriers life sometimes puts in front of you.
The sun was beginning to drop down behind the building and the light fading. This coincided with the evening guests arriving. The room was swiftly turned around and the dance floor put in place. This gave us the opportunity to capture more shots of Kirsty and Gareth as well as some shots with their evening guests.
The DJ was ready to hit play and the dance floor was lit up ready for the first dance. Everyone gathered around to watch the newly weds sway around the floor. Again, just like the ceremony, I opted to take a variety of shots not just down on the floor but also up on the atrium looking down on them as they held each other and swayed to the music.
And that was my day done. Everyone else continued to party and I made my way back to Kent with Def Leppard blasting out of the speakers. Just a perfect day all around.