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medieval magic. a romantic winter wedding at the priests house – victoria & matthew

May 11th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (35)

The atmospheric venue where today’s real wedding between Victoria and Matthew takes place, is set against the resplendent backdrop of 13th century Barden Tower, nestled in the glorious Yorkshire Dales landscape. With open log fires, candlelight and dark oak beamed ceilings, it was the perfect place for Victoria and Matthew to exchange their vows on a cool January day.

Wearing a gorgeous Justin Alexander dress with illusion sleeves and a full skirt, Victoria married Matthew on her late father’s birthday, to create new and wonderful memories of that date. With their young son William in attendance, dressed in an adorable combination of waistcoat, smart trousers and white converse trainers, this family affair was brimming with love and happiness!

With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Lloyd Clarke Photography.

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (15)

victoria says: We got engaged at Bamburgh Castle. We were away on a family holiday for my mum’s birthday and visiting the castle. Matthew proposed in front of all my family (and everyone visiting Bamburgh Castle at that time!) so I quickly said yes to stop everyone looking!

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (31)

We got married on 5th January 2018. We chose this date as it is my late father’s birthday. We had both always wanted a winter wedding and decided it would be good to make a nice memory on my dad’s birthday. We also managed to spread out Christmas a little longer than usual!

We got married at The Priests House right next to Bolton Abbey. We fell in love with this venue the moment we saw it and knew we had to get married there. The venue has the most beautiful surroundings whatever the weather, which was important to us considering the high chances of getting married on a wet and windy day.

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (38)

We loved our venue. They took the stress out of a lot of the day and definitely knew what they were doing. They weren’t afraid to let us know if they thought one of our ideas wouldn’t work and also suggested things they thought we would like. They didn’t complain when I started emailing them a lot in the run-up to the wedding and nothing seemed too much bother. All our wedding guests complimented us on our venue and how stunning it was. We couldn’t have chosen anywhere much prettier.

We had a rustic wedding theme to match the wedding venue. For our colour scheme, we chose red and white and complemented this with lots of rustic/wooden decorations. We worked backwards with the colour scheme for the wedding as the bridesmaid’s dress had been chosen before a colour scheme, so we matched our colour scheme to the dress.

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (43)

I chose an A-line wedding dress by Justin Alexander from the Sweetheart Collection. I got it from The Bridal Affair in Boroughbridge, after a friend had recommended them. It wasn’t the dress I originally thought I would get but as soon as I tried it on I didn’t want to take it off.

My bridesmaid wore the same dress I had worn as a bridesmaid for my sister’s wedding. My niece, who was my only bridesmaid, had asked if she could wear it as she really liked it.

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (5)

For our photographer we chose Bethany Clarke, of Lloyd Clarke Photography. We knew her through our children and when looking for a photographer we couldn’t find anyone anywhere nearly as good as Beth. It was lovely that we already knew her too, so it wasn’t like we were asking a stranger to photograph our wedding. Before our wedding she’d done a family photoshoot with us and the photographs were just incredible, so this confirmed that we’d made a great choice of photographer for our wedding. I’d definitely recommend her as she captured our day perfectly. I don’t think anyone else could have done such a brilliant job.

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (37)

For our flowers, we followed our colour scheme of red and white and the venue did all of our flowers.

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (41)

For favours, we gave out brownies as Matthew has the biggest sweet tooth. We got them from a company called Little Breads in Harrogate. They are renowned for their delicious brownies, so there was no other choice. They did three flavours in honour of our family’s three favourite chocolate bars – Cadbury’s Caramel for me, Crunchie for Matthew and plain chocolate for our son William.

We chose an afternoon tea for our wedding breakfast as we thought people would be sick of a roast dinner or other rich foods from Christmas, so we wanted to choose something a little lighter.

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (52)

For our entertainment we chose The Crazy Knights band after hearing them at a wedding fair. They were slightly rocky and played all the songs we liked and thought our guests would love. They were a brilliant choice.

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (46)

Reflecting on our wedding, I’d say my favourite part of the day was straight after the ceremony and I had a bit of time to catch up with all my friends and family. I felt like the main part was over and everything was running smoothly, so I started to relax a lot more.

A Romantic Winter Wedding at Barden Tower (c) Lloyd Clarke Photography (58)

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to try not to stress too much before the day. The suppliers/venue you have chosen deal with weddings all the time – it’s their job! Everything falls into place and, even if something does go wrong, no one notices anyway. The main thing is to enjoy yourselves.

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about the author

Aislinn Thompson
Aislinn has a background in journalism, having filled all manner of publishing roles from editor to copywriter to feature writer. She is a former wedding photographer who ran her own business with her husband Michael. Together, they have travelled as far as Australia to photograph a client’s wedding (and spent all their earnings on a campervan trip up the Aussie coast!). Aislinn left wedding photography behind to take on the biggest commitment of her life as mummy to her young son Tom. She has been a bride, bridesmaid and even best woman (she has the speech to prove it!), which is almost all angles covered!

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