Lee and I met through mutual friends during a night out in September 2006. As soon as I walked into V bar I noticed him. It was surprising how quickly and how well we hit it off.
Having been going-out for nearly four years, we were so happy and we hadn’t even talked about marriage, so when he proposed to me at home on Valentines Day 2010 it came completely out of the blue.
It was just a usual Sunday, I always watch Lee play football in the morning and we had a romantic meal in the evening. After a gorgeous meal we sat down to watch a film, as I was busy setting up the DVD Lee had sneaked upstairs, when he came back down he turned off the TV, which was odd until he knelt down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
It was so romantic, he produced a beautiful ring box, and to my surprise the ring wasn’t of the gold variety but of the sweet variety, It was so funny and cute, he knew Haribo rings were my favourite sweet, he said he wanted us to go out and choose the ring together; as I am quite picky.
I am a teacher and Lee is a courier for FedEx, so in the February half term, we went in search of the perfect engagement ring. As soon as I walked into Leslie Davis in Hanley I saw the one for me, it was so beautiful with a huge centre stone in white gold.
From then it was a bit of a whirlwind of excitement. We went in search of venues straightaway; as we knew we wanted to get married in the next 18 months. We desperately wanted to get married at the same church as my parents, St Matthews Church in Meerbrook, so after meeting with Father Carl Peters we booked our special day for the 22nd of October 2011 at noon.
For the reception we needed somewhere beautiful and close by, so everyone could attend. We decided to have a look around The Three Horseshoes pub in Blackshaw Moor. From walking in, the excitement in the pit of my stomach was a clear sign that this was the place for us, we both fell in love with it, and the amazing views it presented.
Next on the agenda was my dress. I had already seen the one I wanted, in Maria Modes Bridal Shop in Leek, I had a quick look around other places but nothing compared, so I went back to Maria Modes to buy my dress. It was a beautiful white, bodice style dress, with a matching veil, and dainty tiara, which I finished it off with some gorgeous silver Dune shoes.
We went for a hot pink and black colour scheme so purchased pewter dresses from Debenhams for my bridesmaids; Jess, Stef, Emma, and Amy (Lee’s sister). We hired dark grey suits with silver waistcoats and ruched ties, from Chaplins in Leek, for the men, with unique cufflinks for everyone. A family friend; Julie Wood, designed our flowers, I sent her a few ideas of what I wanted so she arranged hot pink rose bouquets for the bridesmaids, and hot pink roses with diamantes and freesias for me, I was thrilled.
Lee is a huge Beatles fan so we named each table after a different Beatles song; he even wore Beatles socks that said ‘all you need is love’. We couldn’t decide on a Beatles song for our first dance, so went for Amazed by Lonestar.
We wanted our wedding to be special, so personalising it was very important to us. My auntie, Angela Lilley, offered to do our wedding photography for us as a present, having seen her work at a wedding fayre, we desperately wanted her to take the pictures of our special day. Me and my mum Kath Fernyhough, designed the wedding invitations, as well as the menu cards and place cards, we were so thrilled with how they turned out; my mum has now started her own business designing wedding invitations.
The last 18 months seemed to fly by; our special day was finally here. The morning was a mad rush. My hair was done by 8am, thanks to local hairdressers; Tasha Malkin, and Laura Tomkinson, and my friend Helen from University did my make-up. Lee’s sister arrived with a gorgeous Camilla bangle that Lee had bought for me to wear on the day.
My mum had entered me into Signal One’s Bride of the Week so it came as a shock when they called me at about 11:15 to tell me I had won; Lee said he had heard me on the radio, on the way to church. My dad and I arrived at the church in a Beauford, and a white limousine was hired for Lee, mum and nan, the best men and bridesmaids, all from Diamond Limousines.
Arriving at the church, the weather was fantastic; looking back at the pictures you would think it was a summer’s day. My best friend Kim-Marie read us a poem, and my Nan Kath read us Corinthians13, we left the church to a song called "Grow Old With Me" by John Lennon and we were married, I can’t describe the feeling but I’d never been so happy.
The Three Horseshoes were fantastic throughout. We had a lovely menu prepared for 90 guests in the day, and a buffet for 140 guests in the evening. They also laid on a sweet buffet that I had made myself, and our fantastic three tier wedding cake, which was made by one of my nan’s friends; Rachel. All of the reception decoration was hired from Venue Perfection, and perfection it was.
The honeymoon was at the Olympic Lagoon Resort in Cyprus where we had our own villa apartment and private pool; it was amazing, and lovely to be able to do nothing but relax and remember all the special moments from our special day.
Photography by Angela Lilley.