Ollie & Joanne
Arriving at Pilgrims Rest I was greeted by the ‘A Team’ (Amy & Amy) who were both incredibly welcoming and helpful throughout the day! I made my way up to the bridal room to find Jo and I began filming, everyone was super friendly and, for a smaller venue, the bridal prep had a surprising amount of space to work around.
I then found a fairly nervous Ollie who was desperate to get over to the pub to give his groomsmen their presents/have a beer - I think it might have been more so to have a beer though! He had got his groomsmen all matching tie clips which was a really nice touch!
I made my way back over to the girls who were all mid hair and makeup. The two youngest bridesmaids, Emma & Aiva, were enjoying pulling silly faces and playing with my cameras microphone which they thought looked like a cat. Jo was soon all ready and was in her stunning ‘Miss Kay’ dress. I made my way down to the ceremony room to find a patiently waiting Ollie who was awaiting a slightly late bridal party “The one with the plan is late” 5 minutes later the bridal party were coming up the aisle and at the back was Jo and dad Richard.
Ollie’s jaw dropped when he saw a stunning Jo walking up alongside dad Richard. The whole ceremony was so personal to Ollie and Jo and their vows were both funny and super emotional, Jo and Ollie then exchanged rings and said the personalised vows and were soon having their first kiss and walking back down the aisle.
Photographer John took everyone straight outside for photos and had a difficult time capturing kicking and screaming children and a slightly over excited Baxter (the family dog), although I’m certain these are going to make for the best photos! After photos and canapés the guests mingled and me and John took the newly weds off for their portraits. The Pilgrims Rest is such a unique venue with some amazing spots both inside and out for magical shots. As we were taking the couple up the road alongside Battle Abbey we had a couple of tourists who were taking loads of photos right in the way and after a certain time John had to politely ask them to move! We had some amazing shots outside the abbey and then everyone made their way in for the food.
As the room welcomed the new Mr & Mrs Allpress, Ollie surprised Jo with her very own personal bib (as she is always spilling food down herself).
After the food came the speeches and first up was the father of the bride Richard who had some hilarious stories. Next up was Ollie who joked that he was stuck for ideas so Jo gave a template for a traditional structured groom speech with sprinklings of compliments through for his new bride (as instructed) In all seriousness though Ollie gave lots of funny stories and had some real heartfelt moments. Then best man Tim steps up who gave an absolutely cracking speech with some of the most genuine laughter I’ve seen in a best man speeches. Not only was his full of jokes but also showed just how much he cared for his best mate Ollie and spoke about some great stories! After everyone's speeches were over, Jo’s bridesmaid Hannah stepped in with a surprise and kindly asked the bride and groom to take off both of their shoes, with a confused look on both their faces Jo and Ollie obliged and Hannah then began with a hilarious ‘Mr & Mrs’ game, which included “who has the smelliest feet (Ollie in case you are wondering), “who is more likely to get lost?” (Jo) “Whos more competitive?” (also Jo) and perhaps the most important question … “Who loves the cats more?” (Both agreed Ollie!)
After the speeches the evening guests began to arrive, the band were set up, the cake was cut and Ollie & Jo had their first dance to Jenny’s Song by We The Kings. After this the party was well and truly started with the guests hitting the dance floor followed by a lovely sparkler photo.
When I first met Ollie & Joanne,
I could tell this was going to be a magical day, they both said they want the wedding to feel like a cosy Autumn night down the pub with their good friends and family and they got it spot on! The Pilgrims Rest was perfect for this and I hope to be able to come back to this beautiful venue soon. Ollie & Jo, it means the world that you chose me to be a part of your day, I had an absolute blast!