Tags: Dorset

Vintage wedding - on a nature reserve

12 Sep 2013

Vintage wedding - on a nature reserve

The summer tapestry of wildflowers at the Kingcombe meadows nature reserve in West Dorset provided the perfect backdrop to Sam and Ella Jukes’ wedding party and night

Photography Steven Jukes

Dorset Wildlife Trust’s Kingcombe Centre is nestled in a stunning nature reserve, which Ella and Sam Jukes decided was the perfect location for their intimate vintage-themed wedding reception.

Virtually untouched by the modern world, Kingcombe is still managed as a traditional working farm. The result is a landscape overflowing with unforgettable scenery and wildlife, such as meadows full of wildflowers and dancing butterflies.

The happy couple, Ella and Sam Jukes, visited the Kingcombe Centre shortly after moving to Dorset several years ago and were immediately taken by the beauty and tranquility of the reserve.

“We came to the Kingcombe Centre for a cup of tea and thought what a wonderful place it would be if we were to get married, so several years later when we actually decided to get married it seemed the obvious place” said Ella.

“We had a small and intimate wedding, so the Kingcombe centre was perfect, with its beautiful barn and adjoining cafe conservatory. We had the most amazing day, and Kingcombe was completely perfect for it,” she added.

The decoration in the barn house included a beautiful collage of pictures from when Sam and Ella first met, so guests could enjoy the memories of the special couple whilst being a part of their special day.

“We had lots of seasonal local flowers, bunting and a few other hints of nature to reflect our surroundings, alongside personal objects and photos to celebrate our friends and family,” said Ella.

Hints of bright orange colours flowers graced the room to add to the vintage theme and personal touch so the happy couple could put their stamp on their wedding. Ella wore an elegant lemon dress with a white shrug while Sam wore a flowery open necked shirt – a true reflection of the relaxed and intimate day they wanted. Pebbles, wild flowers and nature books filled the reception tables, with wooden letters spelling out the guest’s names as unique favours.

Young and old were able to enjoy the surroundings, whether sitting outside next to the pond, or running through the wild flower meadows, everyone was entertained.

To top off their unique wedding day, Ella and Sam spent their first night as a married couple in the recently restored Living Van, for a tranquil night surrounded by wildlife.

Ella said: “The Living Van was a fantastic opportunity to stay in unique accommodation for our wedding night. Camping is another of our great loves, and the Living Van offered the camping experience with the luxury of a bed!”

Traditionally used in the 19th and early 20th centuries, Living vans provided homes for road workers and these magnificent vans now provide an insightful step back in time for the modern world. Dorset Wildlife Trusts’s living van has been carefully restored to its original beauty by Piddlehinton based hut makers, Plankbridge. During the restoration, the van was fitted with electrical sockets and a wood burning stove, giving visitors a chance to experience a taste of the past without losing modern comforts.

The Living Van is available all year round for £75 per night, including breakfast with single, double and bunk-bed options (at no extra cost). For more information and to book, please contact the Kingcombe Centre Manager, Nick Tomlinson on 01300 320684.

For more information about our tailor-made events and accommodation for guests in one of our 11 rooms, please contact Paul Flitton on 01300 320684. Buffet style menus are available from just £10 per person.

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