An intimate wedding in York

31 May 2022

Sally Nolan and Malcolm Kelly tied the knot at The Principal York Hotel after Sally proposed to Malcolm on his 60th birthday 

Image gallery

Image gallery

Sally and Malcolm, who live on a boat in Newark-on-Trent in Nottinghamshire, opted for an intimate ceremony in the venue’s The Principal York Hotel's Crown Room. 

The couple had a table reserved in the gorgeous Garden Room in which they enjoyed a three-course meal. The following morning, Malcolm and Sally returned to the Crown Room for a wedding breakfast. 

Here is what the couple had to say about their relationship and their beautifully intimate wedding in York.  


Meeting for the first time: 

The couple first met at Newark Marina at the end of 2015, where they both lived on their own narrowboats. The first time they actually met one another was when Malcolm took delivery of a parcel for Sally's neighbours and she was looking for his boat. He saw Sally on the front of his boat and came to ask where he could find them. After that, they used to bump into one another, usually as they drove through the gates to the marina.  

At the beginning of January 2016, she had just been dropped off at the marina by a blind date, and Malcolm was just walking up to the marina gates on his way back from the pub. Sally and Malcolm got talking and the rest, as they say, is history. 


The proposal: 

“It was 10 April, 2018; I was actually given the idea of proposing to Malcolm by my late stepmother,” Sally explains. “Malcolm and I had been together for some time and there was no doubt in my mind that I had found ‘the one’ at long last. I had never been happier and, with the support of my late mother, I decided the time to do it was on Malcolm’s 60th birthday. 

“Malcolm never expected me to propose to him, as I had always been adamant that I was very traditional and believed it was the man’s place to propose. He would tease me when we walked past the registry office in Newark, saying that we would probably end up getting married there, when I decided to propose to him. 

“We visited Yorkshire for his birthday and went to visit York Minster. Under the Great West Window, I handed him a birthday card which had a picture of York Minster on the front. Inside, along with some sentimental words, there was a miniature envelope which had a card that said ‘I want to ask you a question…please turn over’. On the flip side of the card, it said 'Will you marry me?’.” 


The venue: 

“York was now a special place for us following my proposal, and from both the room in which we held our ceremony and also the bridal suite, we could actually see the Great West Window under which I proposed to Malcolm. In addition, as soon as we walked into the hotel, I knew for a fact that my late parents would have absolutely loved it. 

“Finally, and very importantly at the time, the hotel offered very good facilities for those with a disability, so it would mean my stepmother would be able to attend our wedding, which she was desperate to witness. However, very sadly, she died just a few months before the wedding. All in all, the hotel was absolutely perfect.”  

Sally and Malcolm had just six guests, with only family present. This included Malcolm’s sister and her partner, Sally’s sister and her husband as well as her stepbrother, who walked Sally down the aisle, and his wife. 


The dress and suit: 

“I found my dress at the first shop I went to, Eternally Yours Bridalwear in Newark,” says Sally. “It was the second dress I tried on and was selected by the owner, Helen. At first glance, I really didn’t think it was for me as I am very self-conscious about my figure but as soon as I put it on, I had that ‘moment’ that you hear about. It was an ivory lace, off-the-shoulder, mermaid dress; Morilee by Madeline Gardner. I wore a silver crystal and pearl tiara by Jon Richard.” 

Malcolm wore a grey three-piece suit by Skopes, bought from Downtown in Grantham. He had a peach swirl leaf wedding tuxedo tie and matching pocket square from Tie Specialists. 


The details:  

As it was an intimate wedding the couple were able to taste from the venue’s extensive menu, which included pressed duck and peppercorn terrine, smoked salmon and mozzarella bruschetta to start, feather blade of beef, salmon fillet of wellington of mushroom for mains and Kit Kat brownie, passion fruit cheesecake or chocolate tart for dessert.  

The flowers for the room, Sally’s bouquet and buttonholes, were provided by Ello Flower in York. Following the ceremony, the floral arrangements from the mantelpiece and the ceremony table were joined together, like a jigsaw, to form one long floral arrangement in the centre of the table for the wedding breakfast. 

Sally adds: “My bouquet was made up of pink, peach and cream roses, double lisianthus, gypsophila, gladioli, herbs and eucalyptus. The table and mantelpiece arrangements consisted of the same flowers.

“We married in 2020 because I turned 58 in July of that year, and Malcolm was born in 1958, and he turned 62 in April that year and I was born in 1962.” 

September 16th is a poignant date for Malcolm as his late father would have been 100 years old on that date. Sally’s step-brother walked her down the aisle as a tribute to both her late step-father and her late mother, who died after a very short illness in August 2018.  


Steal their style: 
Photographer: Martin Capenhurst
Venue: The Principal York Hotel
Dress: Morilee by Madeline Gardner from Eternally Yours Bridalwear
Accessories (bride's tiara): Jon Richard
Suit: Skopes
Groom's tie and matching pocket square: Tie Specialists
Flowers: Ello Flower

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