Knowsley Hall Wedding Photography – Shannon & Kevin

Wedding photography from Knowsley Hall

Wedding photographs from Knowsley Hall

I had been looking forward to Shannon and Kevin’s wedding at Knowsley Hall in Merseyside for a long time as I know it would be incredible and that is exactly what it turned out to be:)

Shannon and Kevin as such a lovely couple and photographing their special day was such an honour. I had got to know them both better after spending a day with them earlier this year for their engagement shoot in Paris so by the time of their wedding it was just like photographing the wedding of good friends.

This was the first wedding I had photographed at Knowsley Hall and I was wowed by it as a venue! It is absolutely beautiful. A huge stately home set in fantastic grounds, there was no end of amazing locations I could use, both inside and out, so I hope I am asked to photograph more weddings there in the future, it is absolutely stunning!

Shannon’s hair and make-up was done by the amazing Amy from Flossy & Leigh – one of the nicest and most talented people you could meet, I can never recommend Flossy & Leigh enough! This was also the first time I had shot a wedding with my good friend and film maker extraordinaire, Aaron from Reel Weddings. Aaron and I have been friends for a couple of years now and have worked together on various shoots but this was the first wedding we had worked at together. Aaron’s work is absolutely amazing and it was brilliant working with him, I can’t wait to see his film as I know it will be incredible!

To Shannon and Kevin, thank you so much again for asking me to help you with your Knowsley Hall wedding photography. You are such a nice lovely and it has been so nice getting to know you both this year. I wish you both a lifetime of happiness together:-)x

Here is Shannon with her wedding story:

How did you both meet?
Kevin and I met in Cambodia in 2009. It hadn’t been a great night for either of us – I’d received a nasty electric shock from some exposed wiring in a beachside bar and Kev has lost his wallet. But it got better! There was an instant connection between us and we talked for ages. The next morning Kev slid a note under the door of the bungalow I was sharing with friends, he wanted to give me his email address even though there was no expectation that we’d see each other again – I was returning to Australia the next day and he lived in England. But we kept in contact via email for the next two years and finally decided to meet up again in the Seychelles in October 2011. We both knew we had something special and embarked on a whirlwind adventure for the next few years, meeting up everywhere from Mozambique to Iceland.

Kevin emigrated to Australia in September 2013 but we decided to hold the wedding in Kevin’s hometown of Liverpool.

What was the proposal like?
Kevin proposed by climbing out of a lake! We are both avid scuba divers but live in Canberra…which is nowhere near the coast! So he found the next best thing and spent half an hour in rather muddy water waiting for one of my friends to get me to a designated meeting place so he could climb out and propose. He was soggy and covered in lake sludge when he got down on one knee but it was perfect!

How did you find wedding planning? Do you have any tips for other brides?
Planning the wedding from Australia required a lot of organisation. We visited the UK twice before the wedding so were able to view venues and talk with suppliers so I was confident about the people I’d chosen to help with our wedding. Kev’s mum only lives 5 minutes away from our venue so she was a huge help something needed to be done in person.

Why did you choose Knowsley Hall as your wedding venue?
I knew I wanted a stately home because I had family travelling from Australia and New Zealand so I wanted the venue to be something that they couldn’t experience back home. Plus, we wanted the ceremony and reception in the same location. We viewed quite a few around Cheshire and while they all had something to offer, once I saw Knowsley Hall I was sold. Every other venue I looked at afterwards was compared to Knowsley and came up wanting. I couldn’t wait to walk down the aisle in the Stucco Ballroom.

The Hall is still privately owned, with individually decorated bedrooms that everyone who stayed over absolutely loved. We had exclusive use of the Hall from Thursday afternoon through to Saturday morning so we really feel like we had a wedding weekend rather than a wedding day!

What was your favourite part of your wedding day?
Obviously walking down the aisle towards Kevin! I couldn’t quite believe that the day was finally here, after all the challenges that we’d faced in a long distance relationship. There were friends in the room who had been with us the night we met in Cambodia and other friends who had been there in the Seychelles when we saw each other again for the first time in two years. It felt like we’d come full circle.

Also I remember sitting in the wedding breakfast and looking around the room at family and friends chatting and laughing and I felt really overwhelmed that all these people had come to share our special day. They had travelled from all over the UK, as well as from Australia, New Zealand and the Netherlands. I felt really lucky.

Who were your wedding suppliers?

The venue décor and flowers supplied by Red Floral Architecture were an absolute triumph, I think more guests photos of the centerpieces went up on Facebook than of us!

Amy from Flossy and Leigh was brilliant and I can’t thank her enough! My makeup was still going strong at 1.30am!

My headpiece was a bespoke creation by Nina Wren, who took a necklace belonging to my great-great grandmother and made something truly beautiful.

Aaron from Reel Weddings was great on the day…even though we never got that patch of sunny sky he was hoping for!

The cake was made by Gemma Lee from Iced Gems. She rose to the challenge of making our cake admirably – the design was completely new and all communication was through email and some colour swatches I posted. But the end result was perfect!

And of course Knowsley Hall, with particular thanks to Matt Gough on the day, everything ran like clockwork and so many people commented not just on the beautiful venue, but the quality of the food and service.

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“Walking down from the bridal suit with Grandma holding my arm and telling me to breathe…I had felt quite calm while getting ready but at this point I was borderline hyperventilating.”

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“My wonderful Grandma came all the way from New Zealand and did a reading of a traditional New Zealand song, Poukarekare Ana – except I’d forgotten to tell her that I wanted her to read it in English and Maori so she didn’t find out until the celebrant announced she’d read it in two languages! She covered it like a champion though and I didn’t even know that she hadn’t practiced her Maori beforehand.”

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“Married at last and the relief is palpable! The Liva String Quartet played an amazing string arrangement of “Land Down Under” by Men at Work for our recessional.”

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“Our friend Charlotte was waiting with that confetti cone like a coiled spring – this is such a funny photo of the exact moment she pegged Kev right in the face with it.”

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“I love this picture of me and my beautiful niece Zoe, who came from New Zealand for the wedding. If you look closely you can see the remnants of a glitter mermaid tattoo from their stopover in Singapore. It couldn’t quite be scrubbed off but I quite like it – she looks like a miniature Popeye!”

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“This is a great shot of the State Dining Room with the amazing centerpieces by Red Floral Architecture. The way the room came together for the wedding breakfast really took my breath away.”

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“The cake made by Kev’s cousin Gemma who has her own business, Iced Gems. She did such an amazing job, putting the cake together based on emails and photos we sent from Australia. She handmade all the flowers – I managed to get a couple of them home to Australia and have displayed them in a bell jar.”

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“Our whale shark crew! We met them in the Seychelles on a whale shark expedition – hence the shark hats!”

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“Rich delivering a very funny and moving best man speech. Kev’s done enough silly things to provide him with ample fodder for the speech, but I note that Rich left out his involvement in their various shenanigans….”

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“We’d had dance lessons to learn a proper waltz and had been fully intending to practice, but the final lead up to the day was quite hectic and we just forgot. So we winged it. I’d had a few champagnes by this stage so I thought we were pretty good.”

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Sandhole Oak Barn Wedding Photography – Megan & Ed

Wedding photographs from Sandhole Oak Barn

I could not have enjoyed Megan and Ed’s wedding at Sandhole Oak Barn more. They are the nicest, funniest and most loved up couple you could meet and capturing their big day was such an honour.

I already knew how relaxed and brilliant Megan and Ed were in front of the camera from their pre-wedding shoot in Manchester and I had been looking forward to their wedding ever since. The whole day was absolutely perfect, from seeing both Meg and Ed in the morning with their friends laughing away, to the emotion and excitement of the beautiful church ceremony at St Andrew’s Church in Cheadle, to the laughter of the speeches and the non stop dancing in the evening at the stunning Sandhole Oak Barn – they made my job so easy! Ed very kindly even set his speech alight on a candle during the speeches for, what I’m sure was purposeful comic effect;-)it was just all so much fun!

To Megan & Ed, thank you so much for asking me to be your wedding photographer. It was has been so nice getting to know you both and I know you will have a very long and happy marriage together. You are such a lovely couple and I wish you all the very best for your future together x

A huge thank you to you both too for sharing your wedding story!

How did you meet Ed?
We met at University in Canterbury, we were friends for a long time then 5 years later I was living in Didsbury, Ed was in London and I invited him up to see The Streets (we originally bonded because we were both singing the words to ‘You’re Fit But You Know It’!) The rest is history!

What was the proposal like?
I’d had a really busy summer starting a new job and I’d danced in the closing ceremony of the Olympic Games so hadn’t had much time at home. I couldn’t wait for a weekend in our flat but Ed surprised me with a weekend away – I was livid and made that very clear! Once I’d calmed down…! We went back to Canterbury and Ed proposed on the top of the hill on Campus where we first met, I mumbled a teary yes!

How did you find wedding planning? Do you have any tips for other brides?
Hmmm…. I’d describe it as a rollercoaster! You go from so excited, to daunted, to stressed at least once a day! The majority was fine though, it was only the week before that was really bad. My advice would be to do a bit at a time then have a break for a few weeks. Try and do as much as you can before the final run up to the day; because I had the week off before I did a lot of ‘oh I’ll just do that nearer the time’ Those things ad up!! It did mean I was really chilled out for the final couple of months though!!

Why did you choose St Andrew’s Church and Sandhole Oak Barn as your venues?
We knew we wanted to get married in my local church, I went to playgroup there and the youth group and my dad is also the treasurer… so that bit was easy. We knew we wanted a venue that was just going to be ours for the day and had accommodation but didn’t want a hotel so it cut out a lot of choices. The minute we saw Sandhole we almost didn’t need to look anywhere else! It ticked all the boxes and had such a laid back feel, it was perfect!

What was your favourite part of your wedding day?
I think it has to be the service at the church – well the whole time we were at the church really! Walking down the aisle at that church was just a dream come true and it’s where I actually married Ed, that’s what it’s all about really!

Who were your favourite wedding suppliers?
I didn’t have a bad one – me and mum kept calling them the dream team!

The guys at Sandhole Oak Barn are just incredible, nothing is too much bother and they make you feel so welcome.

Annette and the team at Top Table just go above and beyond. They’re more than a caterer, I don’t think we would have had the day we wanted without their help and advice. It was Annette who recommended we have a videographer which we weren’t going to have.

I found Hannah at GOSH! Weddings and she was amazing, how she managed to be in two places at once for most of the day will always baffle me! Having a record of the ceremony and speeches is priceless, it was such a whirlwind I didn’t really remember what was said and watching it back is so special.

Annette recommended Clare Thompson for our flowers and from the minute I met her I didn’t even need to see anyone else! She just completely got what we wanted, right down to the beer bottle tops on the button holes!

Claire Barton did my make up and it was like having an old friend in the room! The airbrush make up she does is like magic! I have to admit I woke up the day after the wedding with a full face of make up on… including eyelashes… and it still looked perfect!

I had a bit of a nightmare with my dress as the shop I ordered through ceased trading (that was a panic day!) so I ended up dealing directly with the designer Sabina Motasem, again it was like going for a cup of tea with a friend when I went for fittings. And the dress was just beautiful, the material made me feel like a million dollars!

Then last but certainly not least, the one and only Neil Redfern! I wanted to book Neil before we even met, his photos are just so incredible and unlike anything else we saw. The engagement shoot idea made me cringe a bit at first but it was so vital looking back. We both got to know Neil better and he made us feel so comfortable so by the day it was just like hanging out with a mate and it felt like we sped through the photos because we knew what we were doing. And the end result is amazing, can’t thank him enough! >> So kind, thank you very much Megan!

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“My mum was pretty stressed out in the run up to the day, I love this picture because she looks so relaxed!”

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“I went to playgroup in that hut! I love that my now husband is stood by it with his best friends on our wedding day!”

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“Ed loves nothing more than spending an afternoon with his best friends at the pub, how awesome he got to do that on his wedding day!!”

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“Me, my cousin and my oldest friends – when I look at this I just know I had the best bridesmaids in the whole world.”

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“I think mum actually spat on a tissue to clean my face, some things you just don’t grow out of!”

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“Paul had wrapped the rings so carefully they took ages to get out!! It was so funny! We laughed and smiled all the way through the ceremony and this just sums it up!”

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“Walking through a confetti storm is the most fun I’ve ever had! Every day should feel like that!”

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“My Uncle Richard’s first car, Lady Pru, is a member of the family. She was more excited about the day than us I think!”

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“We’re so relaxed and happy, it’s just how I wanted the day to be”

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“We had a nightmare deciding on the best way to calve enough chickens at the table to feed over 120 people while keeping it hot but on the day it just worked out and everyone got so involved, we couldn’t have planned that if we tried!”

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“My family end every meal with the After Eight game, I loved how everyone embraced it… even my boss!!”

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“Everyone told me before the day to take time out and take it all in. After dinner I spied an empty terrace and sneaked Ed away for a quiet moment together, it felt really special. I didn’t even know Neil had spotted us!”

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“We had such an amazing wedding party who made every part of the planning and the day so much fun, this captures the laughter perfectly!”

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“Me and all my best girls in one place, when does that ever happen in grown up life! I’m really glad I sneaked this one in just before Neil left!”

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  • July 17, 2014 - 2:53 pm

    Adam - Just beautiful work Neil. I smiled all the way through looking at those, what a happy day!! You’ve done Megan and Ed proud with these, an amazing collection.

  • July 17, 2014 - 4:19 pm

    Toni Darcy - Really beautiful photographs Neil – They very nearly brought a tear to my eye. Its really touching hearing their story behind some of the photographs. I love playing the after eight game too!!! xx

  • July 20, 2014 - 5:11 pm

    Kyle Hassall - Amazing Neil, and I love that car! :)

  • July 21, 2014 - 3:17 pm

    David - Awesome images Neil. The night time portraits are particularly elegant.

  • July 28, 2014 - 5:47 pm

    Rachel Ryan - Wow Neil! I am a bit in love with Pru, love those shots and one with them looking out onto the lake. What a beautiful, happy wedding with so many wonderful moments captured. Just fab!

  • July 28, 2014 - 8:59 pm

    Ian - Wow Neil – what a beautiful day!
    Megan and Ed look so happy (and Megan looks stunning!). I think you nailed their portraits!
    Fantastic work, thanks for sharing!

  • July 28, 2014 - 9:48 pm

    Hannah - I loved looking through this Neil, so beautiful

  • July 28, 2014 - 11:03 pm

    Matt Robinson - Smashed it again Neil, stunning work. After Eight game is one of my favourites too!! Really captured Megan and Ed’s big day perfectly, the portraits are awesome!!

  • July 29, 2014 - 12:06 pm

    Emma - Gorgeous set Neil, love that little car, beep beep!! :)

  • July 30, 2014 - 6:00 pm

    Ben - Beautiful set of images Neil. Loving the portraits!

  • July 30, 2014 - 8:41 pm

    paul baker - Like you said at the beginning megan and ed look so in love. They both look so happy in all these shots. I particularly like the one towards the end of megan on her own holding her dress to the side. love the portraits too you’ve captured so many beautiful moments!

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