What a beautiful idea – to get married at the university where you both met. My time at university will always sit fondly in my memory and the city where I studied will always have a place in my heart. So, when walking around the University of Sussex with Maddy and Oli, talking about their time there, and their plans for the wedding there, I couldn’t help but smile.
The location for their ceremony was the Meeting House – a place to sit and read, chat with friends, and also to talk to the Chaplains about faith. It’s an amazing building – cylindrical with multi-coloured windows filling the interior with a kaleidoscope of colour. There is a beautiful feeling of cosy openness about it. I knew it would look incredible in the photos.
After the ceremony and a quick photo of the bride and groom with all their uni mates by the university sign, we departed for Hendall Manor Barns – one of my favourite wedding venues & Maddy and Oli had decorated it beautifully. The wedding breakfast room had pebbles with names written on as place holders, and origami flowers made from pages of Harry Potter books for table displays. The groom’s buttonhole was also a mix of genuine flora and paper flowers – the effect was stunning.
Another part of the day that really stood out for me, was the best-man’s speech. The best-man’s speech is a highlight at most weddings, but not many involve the best-man playing guitar, and getting everyone singing along to a cover version of Dolly Parton’s song “Jolene”. Oli’s best man had changed the lyrics to talk about the loss of his best friend Oli, to the bride Maddy, and it had everyone laughing and smiling, and singing along in the chorus. I must admit – I had the tune in my head for days afterwards.