Real life wedding
4 February 2019
Congratulations to Simon and Stacey who got married at the hotel last year. We caught up with them to talk about how they planned their wedding, their favourite part of the day, and any advice they would give bride and grooms to be.
When and how did you first meet?
We met as kids age 15, first proper relationship, together for 2 years. Spent 3 years apart then got back together aged 20, had Bobby and here we are 7 years later!
Who popped the big question and how did they propose?
Si proposed at home, I specifically didn’t want a big fuss!
How long did it take you to plan your wedding?
Engaged in June 2017, married in September 2018.
Why did you choose the Mercure Gloucester Bowden Hall Hotel as your venue?
The grounds had perfect photo opportunities. Everything was readily available and could all be done in the same place.
Was there an inspiration or theme for your wedding?
No, the colour scheme was picked by Si, he told me a long time ago we could get married on the condition the colour theme was West Hams colours. We scrapped sky blue and went for navy instead but that’s where the claret colour comes from.
What made you choose your photographer?
We chose Leigh, from Vita Vestra Photography. We just researched and liked the type of pictures she does.
How did your Leigh capture your big day memories?
She asked beforehand if there was any specific pictures we wanted. Arrived ready for bridal prep and stayed through until after the first dance. She managed to catch some nice, natural photos of the guests.
Did you make, design or create anything yourself?
Invites, favours, table plan, sweet table and table decorations.
Tell us about your wedding dress.
It was everything I hated in a dress; it was big, princess style, I was adamant I wanted a slim, mermaid style dress but knew instantly I had to have that one when I tried it on. I dropped two dress sizes to get it on too! It came from By Design, Westgate Street.
What did the groom wear?
Navy suits with white waistcoats, from Tuxedo Junction.
Did you incorporate any special family details or heirlooms, for example?
No there was references throughout the day to our history, being together as teenagers, first love and all that. Small things that meant something to us. Including songs picked specifically because of their lyrics and the resemblance to our story.
Did you have something old, new, borrowed and blue?
No I didn’t follow the traditional route, my mum walked me down the aisle for starters. I’ve never really been one for superstitions.
What song did you walk down the aisle to?
Perfect by Ed Sheeran.
What did you have for your wedding breakfast?
Tomato soup to start. Roast chicken and pork for the main; profiteroles and brownie for pudding.
What kind of cake did you go for?
Four tiers, varying flavours: chocolate, lemon drizzle, and victoria sponge. Simple and elegant, plain white with claret roses to match the colour theme.
What was your first dance song?
Every time we touch – the slow piano version – Cascada. Can you feel the love tonight? for my mother and son dance.
What was your favourite part of your wedding day?
Seeing each other at the aisle, we were both so so nervous but it seemed to go away as soon as we saw each other. After that the reception, I’m sure that’s the main reason for getting married, is for the party afterwards.
What advice would you give anyone planning their big day?
I heard it so many times but honestly it goes so quick. I lost whole hours without even realising, the morning dragged but as soon as the ceremony was finished it flew by. We took some time to ourselves to let it all sink in as I’m not sure how much time we actually spent together throughout the day! Spend time to research the photographer and don’t cut corners, the only thing left to look at is the pictures so take time to pick one and make sure they have all the shots you want. Oh and don’t put too much on a bar tab, we ended up struggling to use ours!
Is there anything you know now that you wished you’d known before the big day?
How quickly it goes, I was told it so many times but never really realised.
And finally, where did you spend your honeymoon together?
Santo Stefano, A small island off the coast of Sardinia.
A big thanks to Simon and Stacey for sharing their story with us. We were delighted to host their wedding ceremony and reception, and wish them all the best for the future. Images credited to: Vita Vestra Photography
If you’re interested in getting married at the Mercure Gloucester Bowden Hall Hotel, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01452 255012.