In the latest instalment of our Real Weddings series, the new Mr & Mrs Newell share their their big day memories from a wedding at Dodford Manor on 21st December 2021.
Tell us about your big day and why was it so amazing?
After having to postpone due to reason we all know why, both myself and my now husband Chris couldn’t wait to finally say “I do!”.
It’s no secret that I am very organised and often my friends refer to me as Monica Geller, so I woke up feeling very relaxed on the morning of the wedding.
Until I started having my makeup done, then I started to get the shakes and my wonderful makeup artist then handed me a drink to calm my nerves.
The whole day was just perfect. Being a December wedding, there is always the risk of wind, rain, freezing cold temperatures or even snow! But we had a lovely mild day, no rain and most importantly for my hair.. no wind!
Although not all of our family and friends could attend, our day was filled with lots of love and laughter with the loved ones that could be there to share our day with us.
One of the most memorable parts of the day was taking my husband’s hand as we sat at the top table and I said to him to just stop and look around the room.
To see our loved ones enjoying themselves all in the same room after being kept apart for so long. That is something we will both cherish for the rest of our lives.
The roar of laughter and applause then filled the room as Michael and Marco (aka Adam) then surprised everyone (including my husband #MajorWifePoints 😉) with their amazing singing and brilliant performances!
We then had photos outside with sparklers before dancing the night away after being joined by our evening guests. It truly was a beautiful day and everything we could have asked for.
Why did you choose your venue? Did you marry on site or in church?
We had the whole day at Dodford Manor, ceremony, wedding breakfast and evening reception.
I recall that we originally first visited Dodford on a cold rainy day in March 2019. After coming back from New Zealand from a friend’s wedding, we decided that it was time we set a date for our own wedding.
The grounds are beautiful, it’s a private venue and everyone is so lovely and helpful. We instantly fell in love with it, even with the rain and knew it was where we wanted to have our special day.
Who were your caterers and what did you choose for your food options?
The catering team Jenkinsons were part of Dodford Manor.
We had a taster day in November 2019 with 4 of our friends joining us, the food was delicious and made choosing our wedding breakfast menu very easy.
To start, we had Parsnip and apple soup. This was topped with smoked bacon and served with warm bread rolls. For mains, we had roast pork with all the trimmings.
As an extra surprise for our guests, we had pre-selected some of our guests and nominated them to ‘host a roast’.
They were then presented with a chef’s hat and apron to carve the meat and serve to the rest of the guests at their table. The dessert (my favourite part of the meal) was a heart shaped white chocolate cheesecake filled with raspberry mousse.
For evening food, we had our cheese tower wedding cake served with fruit and crackers. The catering team also supplied Turkey rolls, chips and some fruit cake made by Chris’ mum.
What was the theme for your wedding? Colour, Atmosphere, anything to add?
As the wedding was so close to Christmas, it was a very Christmassy themed wedding.
Dodford Manor had two real trees, one where the ceremony was held and another in the bar area. Most of our decorations were hand made by me and some very helpful friends.
The wreaths used as our centre pieces were made by Chris’ auntie and they made the barn smell just like Christmas day.
Having lost some loved ones in 2020 and early 2021, we had a candle lit next to a framed sign with white feathers which read “Because someone we love is in heaven, there is a little bit of heaven at our wedding”.
We had a projector showing photos of us and loved ones throughout the wedding breakfast.
Our wonderful bridesmaids also made a video which was played after the speeches. Everyone knows I’m a huge fan of Michael Bublé so the video started with a photo slideshow to the song “Everything”.
The video then had messages from all four of our bridesmaids, along with a special message from our two friends in New Zealand. There weren’t many dry eyes after that video and it still brings tears to my eyes when I watch it back.
Why did you choose The Undercover Waiters to share your day?
I saw something pop up on Instagram whilst we were planning for the wedding about singing Waiters. We had previously contacted another company for a quote but the venue, Dodford Manor recommended The Undercover Waiters.
After going onto the website and watching a few videos, it was clear the performances could not be matched compared to other companies I had seen.
I read a few reviews and had seen people commenting about how brilliant Michael and Adam were as a pair.
From there the rest is history! I made the booking but kept it a secret for 2 and a half years from all friends and family attending the wedding.
It was so hard not to let anything slip but seeing the faces of our guests and my husband on the day was so worth it!