A perfect Summer’s day wedding in the Hampshire countryside, with a ceremony at the bride and groom’s local church in Droxford followed by a reception at the most beautiful hidden gem of a venue, the Holywell Estate in the heart of the Meon Valley.
Who doesn’t love a quintessentially English countryside wedding on a blazing Summer’s day. That’s precisely what we had for Alice & Sam’s big day, deep in rural Hampshire. I’m very fortunate to have this stunning corner of the county right on my doorstep and what a treat it was to discover Holywell; an instant addition to my list of all-time favourite venues. We’ll get on to that in due course… First, bridal prep ad the small matter of the wedding ceremony, held at the quite lovely church in Droxford. Prep took place at the bride’s parents’ house (btw – wow, just wow; what a room to get ready in – natural light photography dream!) a few miles down the road and love this as a start to the day – such a nice buzz with bride, bridesmaids and family gearing up for the celebrations ahead.
Droxford was deep into its scarecrow festival on wedding day (this explains the rather random photo in the entrance to the church below). I really love covering weddings where it’s all happening right on the doorstep; from a purely selfish point of view being able to capture the classic Reservoir Dogs groom walking shot from house to church is always a winner, but on top of that the way that it makes it all so personal and meaningful – every day you can walk through the place that you love, with the person you love, past the place where you declared that love – is definitely special.
As friends and family headed on to the reception venue we were able to grab a quick moment for some photos by the church and down by the river (a little bit of dog-wrangling required at this point to keep muddy paws away from pristine white wedding dresses as a group of walkers passed through!). I never even knew that this magical spot existed; this wedding really was the gift that kept on giving.
On then to the Holywell Estate, and what a dream location this is. A beautiful manor house with parkland grounds, all, or most of, the action takes place in the walled garden nestled in a little valley with woodland and rolling hills all around. It’s such a fab set-up – the tipi, the lovely little bar area – all so obviously looked after as a labour of love, I’m struggling even to do it justice. Take this as an example instead; every couple is invited to plant a tree in their ever-growing wedding woodland. You’re not just there for the day; your wedding is part of the story from that point on. I really love that as a touch. Oh, and by the way – the grounds are just STUNNING!!!! I would absolutely recommend this place to anyone 🙂
The Holywell Estate has an embarrassment of riches when it comes o locations for your couple portraits. That little stretch between the wedding breakfast and the evening party – the fabulous ‘golden hour’ if you’re marrying at this time of year – is the perfect opportunity to sneak away and grab some time for yourselves, and just let it all sink in for a moment. Anything else I can throw in at this point? Electric Kicks are an absolutely banging guitar band, and I would always encourage live music at a wedding. Seriously, these guys know how to work a room. Paella is pretty much perfect wedding food. And everyone loves to gather around a fire pit. I think that just about covers it.
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Making it happen…
Venue: Holywell Estate
Hair: Proud of my Locks
Dress: Anya Bridal
Flowers: Bride and Groom! And Hortus Poeticus
Catering: Coastal kitchen catering
Cake: Jane’s Patisserie
Tunes: Electric Kicks
If you are currently planning your Holywell Estate wedding and would like to know more about my wedding photography services, packages and prices, please do get in touch to check availability and ask me any questions you might have. I’m only too happy to help however I can.
Thanks as ever for reading, and come back again soon for many more photos from many more beautiful weddings!