The Surprise Proposal

Mr & Mrs Prescott

13th May 2017

Tom and I met midweek in a bar. It was an unplanned night for both of us so it must have been fate that we met. Tom and I can vividly recall our eyes meeting across the dancefloor. I guess you could say it was love at first sight!

Seven years later, we had bought our first house and despite my hopes of getting married, Tom showed little interest even though I had found the ‘perfect ring’.  A marriage didn’t seem to be on the agenda, at least for the time being.

Then we went to stay at Lake Windermere and, after arriving at our caravan, we made plans to sit by the lake with a bottle of champagne to celebrate our anniversary. As I unpacked, Tom made an excuse and disappeared – I had no idea where he had gone!

Ten minutes later, and making our way down to the lake, I was shocked at what I saw. Candles were scattered around the rocks and photographs of the two of us were hanging from the trees. Tom stood in front of me, talked about how important I was to him and produced a box from his pocket. It was the ring that I had chosen!  I couldn’t believe it and I did have to remind him that it was customary to get down on one knee. I said ‘yes’ without hesitation!

When it came to the preparations, the venue was the first thing on the list. We looked at Cheshire-based venues that were modern and matched our tastes. Colshaw Hall was a venue that kept recurring and the photographs looked spectacular. The Facebook reviews could not speak highly enough of it so Tom and I decided to go and look for ourselves.

Wow! When we arrived at this magnificent setting we instantly fell in love with it. The landscape and picturesque grounds that surround this astonishing stately home were breath-taking. As we walked around the magnificent rooms we instantly knew that there was no other place that we could get married. We booked and sent out invitations for the same date as my parents’ wedding anniversary!

When it came to choosing my wedding dress I always knew that I wanted a ‘big’, princess-style dress. After trying on different styles with my mum and chief bridesmaid Lucy, I eventually fell in love with a gown from the ‘Blu’ collection by Mori Lee. For my ‘something blue’ – I chose Jimmy Choo heeled shoes, which added an extra bit of sparkle to my outfit.

Before we could decide on what the bridesmaids would be wearing, we needed a colour theme. Help in this area fortunately came from one of my bridesmaids, Rebecca, who had sent us a lovely engagement card in blush, champagne and rose-gold colours. Each of the seven bridesmaids wore long, nude chiffon maxi dresses with gathered waists and a diamante and pearl embellished neck.  My mum chose a beautiful blush outfit from Mandy Sisson with a modern hatinator to match.

We chose black tuxedo dinner suits from Whitfield and Ward for the two best men and our dads.  Tom wore a custom-made tuxedo-style suit in which he looked very handsome!

When choosing our flowers, we couldn’t have picked any company other than Red Floral, as everything we had seen from them at Colshaw Hall was utterly spectacular. We knew the types of flowers and colours that we wanted, but had no clue on a final design. There was nothing to worry about as Matt, from Red Floral, reassured us with his doodles and descriptions about what each arrangement would look like. On the day, they looked stunning and all our guests were gobsmacked at how beautiful the ceremony and reception rooms looked. We even had fish that swam amongst the lily centre pieces one of which we still treasure at home to this day!

On the morning of the wedding I was so unbelievably excited, surrounded by my bridesmaids and my mum. As the final preparations were made I started to get ‘jelly legs’ and this was pushed into overdrive when my dad saw me in my dress for the first time. It was such a special moment for the both of us and we couldn’t hold back the tears.

As we approached the ceremony room I felt nervous but I also couldn’t wait to see Tom and for him to see me. Walking up the aisle, to music played by pianist Benjamin Clarke, I could see how shocked everybody was by my dress choice, Tom told me that I looked stunning.

During the ceremony, all I could concentrate on was the vows and I wanted to make sure I said everything right. People have since said that it was the quietest that they had ever seen me! It was such a surreal moment; all the planning and preparation had finally come down to this. I was finally going to be Mrs Prescott.

We danced our way out of the ceremony room and as we entered the lovely Colshaw Hall gardens, the clouds parted and the sun shone! This left us to begin the celebrations under the glorious sunshine accompanied by the fantastic entertainment provided by the amazing saxophonist, Dax on Sax, and mind-boggling tricks by Zanda Magic.

With everybody enjoying the day and the drinks free-flowing, Barrett’s Event Caterers provided much-needed food to soak it all up! From the canapé to the wedding breakfast and through to the evening all the food was first class.

We were also kept thoroughly entertained by the tremendous wedding entertainer, Howard Wing, who had everybody singing and dancing and kept smiles on their faces all day and night. After the meal, the speeches got underway which were all incredibly heartfelt and not too many skeletons came out of the closet!

After the speeches and a bit of a recharge for everyone outside in the gardens, Howard continued where he left off, working his magic to ensure that the dancefloor was full. For our first dance, we chose ‘Lover of the Light’ by Mumford and Sons; a very meaningful and personal song for us both and by the end of it the whole floor was packed!

We had an absolute blast, the DJ helping us to party the night away only stopping for sparklers outside.  It was just such a shame that, eventually, it had to come to an end (although for friends and relatives staying inside the lavish Colshaw Hall the party did keep going for a little while longer!)

In the build-up to the wedding and on the day itself, the Colshaw Hall staff were phenomenal. Nothing was too much trouble for them and they turned what could have been an extremely stressful day into one that was so enjoyable and was truly the best day of our lives. We even had the pleasure of having staff join in the ‘Love Train’ around the room. We whole-heartedly cannot thank everybody enough for everything they did for us and our guests.

After the wedding, we spent five days relaxing and celebrating in the Lake District revisiting the place where our wedding all began. If I could offer a tip to any brides-to-be out there it would be this: every so often during the day just stop, look around and take it all in because the day passes by so quickly you’ll want to remember every last detail for the rest of your life.

Photography – Richard Milnes – www.richardmilnesphotography.com

Venue – Colshaw Hall – www.colshawhall.com

Catering – Barrett’s Event Caterers – www.barrettseventcaterers.com

Dress – Always and Forever Bridal Boutique –  www.alwaysandforeverbridalboutique.com

Bridesmaid Dresses – Little Mistress – www.little-mistress.com

Groom’s outfit – Whitfield and Ward – www.whitfieldandward.co.uk

Stationery –  Natalie Hartwell – www.nattyhart.com

Flowers – Red Floral – www.redfloral.co.uk

Cakes – Made by Beka Bretherton (groom’s cousin)