The sun shone for Hannah Nicholson and Andrew Kelly's wedding day, allowing the happy couple to have the outdoor ceremony they always dreamed of
How long was your engagement?
Our engagement was just over two years. It was Easter 2016. Andy and I had just picked up the keys to our new home and he proposed. It was a complete surprise and totally unexpected. Once we were engaged, we just wanted to get on and fix the date and get married.
How did you choose your venue?
I started planning the wedding as soon as we got engaged. I had originally wanted to go abroad but Andy wanted to get married here, so after some discussion we decided on the UK. My only priorities were that I wanted to get married outside.
My mum was a great help in planning the day and she came with us when we first went to Gibbon Bridge to look around. We had only looked at a couple of places before Gibbon Bridge but once we saw Gibbon Bridge we just knew it was the place for us and so we didn’t bother looking any further. We were just bowled over by the gardens and bandstand outside. We set the date in early summer 2016 despite the actual wedding date being two years away: 19th May 2018. We then had to keep our fingers crossed for good weather so we could get married outside; although Plan B – getting married in the Orangery – was the perfect back-up.
What did you choose for:
Your dress: I only visited a couple of shops and made up my mind very quickly when I found my dress which was by Maggie Sottero. It had a gold underskirt which was why Andy wore a gold cravat.
Your suits: A navy blue morning suit with gold cravat.
Your wedding rings: Yellow and white gold bands.
Your flowers: We had beautiful dusky pink roses and white hydrangeas with gold gypsophila.
How did your day start?
I decided to stay the night before at Gibbon Bridge with my mum and three bridesmaids so that we could be up early to start the preparations. We woke to a beautiful day and I knew immediately that we would be getting married outside – my dream.
Surprisingly, I felt really calm on the day and we had a really relaxed morning. We got up early and Janet (the owner) cooked us breakfast. Gemma Louise, the hairdresser, arrived and my friend Sophie Reeves did our make-up.
The morning flew by but I think Andy was anxiously pacing the garden at home.
The butteflies only arrived when I had to meet the LCC registrar. My mum walked me down the aisle and once the Gibbon Bridge Bell had been rung, and Frank the Harp started to play Canon in D, I felt really emotional. But the most emotional part of the day was seeing Andy standing at the top of the bandstand steps waiting for me.
Tell us about the details of the day.
We had dusky roses sashes on the chairs which tied in with the flowers and bridesmaids' dresses. Our favours were homemade fudge in various flavours: cookies and cream, chocolate orange, and mint chocolate chip.
The wedding breakfast comprised leek and potato soup to start, chicken stuffed with asparagus mousse for main, and finished with a trio of desserts (crème brûlée, mini raspberry pavlova and sticky toffee pudding). We did have one funny incident at the wedding breakfast when my grandad Frank’s glasses slid right down his nose into his soup. Luckily Philip (from Gibbon Bridge) came immediately to the rescue.
Tell us about the wedding cake.
Andy and I love sponge and we knew we wanted different flavours. It was a three-tier vanilla, chocolate and lemon cake.
What did you choose for your wedding entertainment?
Frank the Harp played for us during the day and we chose acoustic guitarist and wedding singer, Alex Birtwell, for the evening. Alex performed our first dance to Oasis - Slide Away and then transcended into a good mix of upbeat songs. Between Alex and the resident DJ at Gibbon Bridge the dance floor was full all night.
How would you sum the day up?
The best day ever. I would love to do it all over again.
Any advice for other brides/couples?
Start your planning early and get your venue booked and then you can relax and enjoy sorting out all the details.
Steal their style:
Photography: The Fromm Shoppe
Venue and catering: Gibbon Bridge Hotel
Dress: Maggie Sottero (Montgomery) from Sugared Almonds, Earby
Accessories: Hair Vine, The Bobby Pin
Wedding rings: H Samuels
Bridesmaids’ dresses: YS Dress, Stockport
Hair: Gemma Louise Brown
Make-up: Sophie Reeves, Sunflower Beauty, Todmorden
Groom’s outfit: Sugared Almonds, Earby
Stationery: Bride's Little Helper, Clitheroe
Flowers: Daisy Chain, Burnley
Cake: Taylor Made, Colne
Venue dresser (chair sashes and post box): Creative Cover Hire, Preston
Entertainment: Frank the Harp and Alex Birtwell
For more Lancashire wedding inspiration, pick up the latest edition of Lancashire & Lake District Bride magazine.