Thank you Lizzie & Andy for telling your story…
Lizzie & Andy, tell us about your proposal?
We got engaged during Easter Weekend in 2019. We were doing long distance at the time so decided to take advantage of the long weekend to get away to North Devon for a few days together. On the first night there we went for a picnic on a little beach. 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 quite modern but also liked the idea of a barn wedding so were looking around at different venues with an open mind.
Tell us about the venue you chose?
We chose The Barn Botley Hill which is a stunning venue with amazing views across the Surrey Hills. We absolutely love the big glass windows that would allow our guests to see that as we eat. We also love that there are two rooms, the main barn and the baby barn giving guests the opportunity 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 so helpful and supportive the whole time.
First impressions of the venue?
We looked round the barn when it was still a building site but luckily the gorgeous windows had been installed so we were able to see the stunning views from inside and outside. We were totally sold on the vision and the mood boards so 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?
We would say the most important thing for our day is that people are having a good time and that it’s a celebration of love. One thing we have learnt over the past few months is that the wedding is important but the marriage is the most important thing. We want the day to be a celebration of love, family and friendship full of laughter.
Tell us about your photographer and the engagement shoot experience?
Our photographer, Jessica Grace, is amazing! I think one of the things we appreciate most is that she is so lovely and warm as a person which really made us feel relaxed in front of the camera as neither of us are particularly natural posers and we feel awkward in front of the camera. It definitely meant as the engagement shoot went on we were able to relax a lot more 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 really wanted.
Your postponement experience
I think 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 like 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 an amazing roast. It was the best day even if it was all pulled together in 48 hours. We’ve definitely 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 of course still want to have a big day with all our guests so have rescheduled and plan to have a blessing and celebration in April 2021. On the whole, we have been really lucky in that our suppliers have been so understanding and flexible in allowing us to postpone to 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 and Andy’s accountancy exams 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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