A Proposal, A Venue Search and A Postponement

Written by Emma Hla
This gorgeous couple are sharing their beautiful engagement photos with us today, with a bit of insight into their venue choice (which we love!) and their experience with postponing their wedding due to coronavirus.

Thank you, Lizzie & Andy, for telling your story…

Notes from the Couple

Lizzie & Andy, tell us about your proposal.

We got engaged during Easter Weekend in 2019. We were doing long distance then, so we took advantage of the long weekend to get away to North Devon for a few days together. We went for a picnic on a little beach on the first night. It was just the two of us there, and Andy popped the question. It was lovely, even if it wasn’t a surprise, as Andy isn’t the best at hiding what he’s planning!

What were you looking for when you started venue hunting?

We didn’t really know what we were looking for when we started. We wanted something relatively modern but also liked the idea of a barn wedding, so we were looking around at different venues with an open mind.

Tell us about your venue

We chose The Barn Botley Hill, a stunning venue with fantastic views across the Surrey Hills. We love the big glass windows, allowing our guests to see that as we eat. We also love that there are two rooms, the main barn and the baby barn, allowing guests to sit and relax away from the music if they don’t want to dance. Although it is a barn, it has quite a modern feel, which we also really liked. They also have the best team, who have been helpful and supportive the whole time.

First impressions of the venue?

We looked around the barn when it was still a building site, but luckily, the gorgeous windows had been installed to see the stunning views from inside and outside. We were sold on the vision and the mood boards, so we took the plunge to book the venue before it was completed. When we visited a few months later, we knew our decision had paid off!

What’s your vision for your big day?

The most important thing for our day is that people are having a good time and that it’s a celebration of love. Over the past few months, we have learnt that the wedding is important, but the marriage is the most important thing. We want the day to celebrate love, family and friendship full of laughter.

Tell us about your photographer and the engagement shoot experience.

Our photographer, Jessica Grace, is fantastic! I think one of the things we appreciate most is that she is so lovely and warm, which really made us feel relaxed in front of the camera as neither of us are particularly natural posers. We feel awkward in front of the camera. As the engagement shoot continued, we could relax and be ourselves. We were thrilled with the photos and how natural they looked. That’s one of the things that made us want to book Jesse as our photographer – we saw from her blogs and her description that she likes to capture the day as it happens and couples as they are, which is something we wanted.

Your postponement experience

It’s safe to say we definitely did not expect our wedding to be affected by a worldwide pandemic.

Initially, there was a lot of anxiety, especially for Lizzie, as we felt we were waiting for the situation to unfold and had no idea whether Covid-19 would be as big of a problem here as it was overseas. We were so excited, so having to postpone a month before was obviously really upsetting.

But, as Christians, the most upsetting thing was the thought that we were putting our lives on hold as we were ready to start life as a married couple. Amazingly, we were able to get married just a matter of days before lockdown in front of our immediate family. Lizzie borrowed her best friend’s wedding dress, Lizzie’s brother tried his hand at photography, and Andy’s dad made a fantastic roast. It was the best day, even if it was all pulled together in 48 hours. We’ve learned that while the wedding is good, the marriage is better and now, every day as a married couple feels so sweet.

That being said, we still want to have a big day with all our guests, so we have rescheduled and plan to have a blessing and celebration in April 2021. Overall, we have been fortunate that our suppliers have been so understanding and flexible in allowing us to postpone until next year.

Jesse and the venue have been so accommodating the whole way through and have tolerated us moving the date around a fair bit due to other suppliers not being free. Andy’s accountancy exams are getting in the way. In the context of a pandemic, the little details that once felt so important are now less so, and we are looking forward to next year to be able to have a big party.

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