Gemma and Connars wedding at ponsbourne park hotel
Date – 21 October 2016
Bride – Gemma Torrington
Groom – Connar Rance
Maid of honour – Carly (sister)
Bridesmaids – Isabella, India and Georgie
Best man – Bradley (identical twin)
Ushers – Alan and David
Church – St James, Goffs Oak
Reception – Ponsbourne Park, Newgate Street Village.
Cars – SJX Car Hire
Toastmaster – keith Reading
Flowers – Sioned rogers
Wedding Dress – Clifford Burr
Photographer – John Paul ODonnell
The Wedding Day
It was Friday morning and I arrived at ponsbourne park hotel. There are not too many more weddings that are going to be taking place here. So for me it was particularly nice because I have been a recommended photographer with them for many years. I have to say Gemma and Connar.. your wedding really was amazing.
When I arrived at the hotel, Gemma was in the bridal suite with her mum Valerie, her sister and best friend. The hair and make up had just finished and Gemma was cracking open a bottle of bubbly. I took a couple of pictures of Gemma close up because she wanted to check it and wasn’t quite happy – so her sister and Georgie stepped in and finished the make up off doing a brilliant job and setting some great pictures up at the same time. I then got some pictures of the dress being laced up. It was then that Gemma’s father Keith came in to the room…. he is a lovely lovely man. What a proud man he was, he had his stick but I took the pictures in a way that you couldn’t see it. Once the pictures were done I said to Gemma I’m going to get over to the church to get the shots of everyone arriving. As I walked out I saw the most beautiful Bentley Mark IV from SJX car hire and it was driven by Colin a man I’ve known for many years.
I got to St James Church in Goffs Oak and Conner hadn’t arrived he was about 5 minutes away. So I set up inside then he arrived with his dad, his identical twin brother and his brothers. This was the first time that I had met Connar and I have to say what a great guy he is. He kept thanking me all day for what I was doing and I kept thanking him for doing all the shots for me … so basically we spent the day “Thanking each other”.. “great guy. I took some pictures of everyone then headed in to see Gemma arrive. Gemma then pulled in and got out the car… her dad helped her out and they then got ready to make their way down the aisle.
The ceremony started, Conner was in place the bridesmaids walked in then Keith walked his daughter down the aisle and you could see that he was immensely proud. The lighting in the church was perfect, I got some amazing natural light shots and then the bride and groom headed up to the high altar for the blessing and then to sign the marriage certificate. After this they walked out and all the guests followed. I set up a big confetti shot and we then did some pictures with everyone before heading over to Ponsbourne Park.
We arrived at Ponsbourne Park and Keith the toastmaster was ready to receive the guests. We went out with everyone and they all bought their drinks over for a big group shot. We then did all the family and friends pictures before I took Gemma and Conner off down into the high grass and shot the pictures with the Gazebo behind. The car was on the back driveway at the hotel and I used the cover of the buildings for the car shots with the house behind.
We then walked up to the Gazebo… the couple saw their guests and then all made their way in for the wedding breakfast. The guests all stood at the tables and the bride and groom were announced in and the room went crazy… everyone shouted and applauded them. The speeches were before the meal so I got my position ready and took the speech shots.
Keith started his speech.. now out of all the weddings I have photographed “this was without doubt the most touching one I have ever seen”. Keith is a very proud Newcastle man.. he did his speech sitting down as he was unable to stand for long enough. The guests were very quiet listening to every word and because of part of Keith illness he repeated part of it a couple of times. It was at this moment that a close family member went over ..put her arms round him and said in a strong but soft northern accent. .”come on Keith let’s do this together”. She read it and he repeated it ”” It really was unbelievable””. Gemma was crying.. her sister was crying and when he finished everyone really cheered whilst wiping the tears away… it was then that Gemma laid her head on her dads shoulder “what a beautiful moment that was to witness”.
The rest of the speeches were very good but after the father of the brides – nothing could get close.
After the meal, Gemma and conner saw their evening guests for drinks in the garden room and then started their dancing off with their first dance. I got some great dancing shots and then took the couple out on to the gazebo for a lovely picture of them as their finishing shot… using off camera flash I shot a sequence of beautiful images with them kissing and cuddling.
Gemma and Connar, I would just like to say thank you very much for picking me to be your photographer, have a lovely time in the Seychelles and I look forward to seeing you both when you get back. JP
Here a few pictures I have selected from the day. Enjoy!
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Gemma and Connars wedding ponsbourne park herts