The love of my life

Emili and Ben met online. “We started talking on a Christian dating site,” says Emili. “We had similar interests and seemed to talk for ages! On our first date, Ben took me to three different restaurants, one for each course. It was very well thought out, and we had a lovely time. Ben asked me to marry him on 29th July, 2019 at Aira Force in the Lake District. We had been pragmatic about the subject of marriage, however, the day itself was a lovely surprise!”

Church "We loved the traditional style of St Peter's Church, and when visiting, we found that they were a lovely group of people," shares the bride. "Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 restrictions, we weren't able to host a reception, so we decided to visit Avenham Park. Some of our friends and family joined us in groups of six, which created a lovely atmosphere."

Live streaming

The happy couple gave each group of six a bag filled with hand sanitiser, champagne, glasses, napkins and seed packets."We tried to go with local suppliers and enlist the help of friends to make the day special," explains Emili. "I handmade a lot of the decorations, which gave me something to keep my mind off the ever-changing restrictions, and the confetti holders were made by the children that I teach."

At the altar

Emili and Ben purchased a three-tier cake from Sara's Cake Heaven. "It was made up of lemon, vanilla and chocolate," says the bride. "The bake was decorated to look like a silver birch with purple flowers to reflect the natural surroundings. We also chose a wonderful brownie tower from BKD, with lots of personalised touches."

Bride laughing "My friend, Kylie, came round and helped me make all of the bouquets and buttonholes," adds Emili. "We used a purple and white theme with lots of roses and lavender wrapped in hessian and ribbons."

Willow tree

"I wore a Rebecca Ingram dress supplied by Frothimoon in Kendal," shares the bride. "It was a long, flowy design with glistening netting that sparkled in the sun."

Walk through park

Ben chose a grey longline suit from Moss Bros. To tie the look together, the wedding party opted for matching ties.

Walking through park "I gave the bridesmaids a colour scheme of cool purple and asked them to buy dresses that they would feel comfortable in," explains Emili. "They fitted in nicely with the overall theme, and the girls looked great."

Couple walk oast fountain "Our original plan was to have a wedding reception for 400 guests, so it was a bit of a shock to go from that to 30 people at the ceremony only," says Emili. "We were keen to start our life as a married couple, so we live-streamed the service and the speeches and cake cutting from the park so we could involve as many people as possible."

Livestream "Considering all the changes we had to make last-minute, we were relaxed and content in the knowledge that we were husband and wife in the eyes of God," recalls Emili. "Of course, the ceremony was the best part, and I cried happy tears throughout the whole thing.

White wedding cake

The lovebirds had the perfect wedding, thanks to their suppliers and family. "There were so many people who helped us make it an exciting and memorable day," shares the bride. "From the beginning, Amanda Dowson, the owner of our original ceremony venue, was so supportive and my unofficial wedding planner. Christina from Fish 2 Photography kept me calm and grounded throughout all the changes.

Bride and groom meet in the church grounds

The Martins and people from Christ Central Preston organised the meeting in the park. Lastly, Luke Yates, one of Ben's groomsmen, played the piano at the church, and Stewart Riley and Ben Horn organised all the tech support and live-stream. It was so great to have a group of people who were so happy to help. The day was the epitome of community built friendships."

Cutting the cake "We booked an upcycled shipping container at Scalpsie Bay on the Isle of Bute in Scotland," adds Emili. "We stayed there just under a week and had a wonderful time relaxing in the countryside."

Emili and Ben's contact book

Bride's dress and accessories

Brownie tower

Ceremony venue

St Peter's Church

Groom's suit

Moss Bros

Hair colouring

House Of Hair & Beauty

Hair styling


Fish 2 Photography

Unofficial wedding planner

Mrs. Dowsons Farm Park
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