Clare & Sam's Inglewood Manor Cheshire Wedding Story
Updated: May 23, 2020
Inglewood Manor, Wirral - May 2019
Clare & Sam's wedding last Spring at the glorious Inglewood Manor on the Wirral was a tale of fun, joy and happiness.
Inglewood Manor is one of my favourite North West wedding venues and one where I usually find myself at least half a dozen times a year, with some fantastic memories!
Inglewood Manor is situated just north of Chester on the Wirral, it is one of Cheshire's finest wedding venues, boasting gorgeous gardens, lakes and first class service. Inglewood is neatly nestled away in the idyllic Cheshire countryside – a tranquil haven of peace and quiet. As a Grade II Listed Building, it boasts generous spaces, exquisite interiors and many classical features from its Edwardian heyday. For a captivating country venue brimming with character, it is the perfect choice.
Wisteria-clad walkways, neatly planted gardens, manicured lawns, pretty ponds and shimmering lakes all contribute to an unforgettable setting for your wedding.
Wirral based Clare & Sam first contacted me back in 2018 and we met up for a drink to chat over their plans before they confirmed that they'd like me to capture their wedding. Clare & Sam met at work and after a night at a colleagues sitting around a firepit and drinking cocktails they realised they got on like a house on fire - finally getting together a few months later.
Sam proposed on in June 2018 in Newcastle as they were off to see an Ed Sheeran concert. Sam had intended to pop the question at the concert at St. James Park, but he couldn’t wait and got down on one knee in the hotel just before we were going to leave for the concert.
On their wedding day, I arrived early at Craxton Wood hotel, just a few miles from Inglewood Manor to capture Clare's bridal preparations, before we headed over to Inglewood for the main part of the day.
Inglewood Manor was the first venue Clare & Sam looked at shortly after they got engaged and after looking around a number of other venues and attending open days, they decided Inglewood was perfect for them. They both loved driving up to the manor, along the sweeping driveway and like many couples, they felt that the grounds had a stunning, romantic countryside feel.
Clare's bouquet from Leaf in Heswall was hand tied, made very loose in style, messy and ‘just picked’ look. Again, to tie in with a rustic, natural feel. It consisted of loved pink Mondial roses, candy avalanche roses, purples veronica, tanisetum daisy, white wax flower, eucalyptus and Samantha rose, trailing at the front using ivy trails.
The Bridesmaids bouquets were a smaller version without the trail. Clare wanted the flowers to be bright and summery with mixtures of pinks, purple and blue tones to compliment the bridesmaid’s dresses and groomsmen’s suits.
Clare wore a stunning Justin Alexander ‘Lily’ dress in ivory, part of the Sincerity collection, purchased from Brides of Chester. She had spent a full day with her Mum in Chester going from one bridal shop appointment to another, but as soon as she had tried this dress on, she knew it was the one for her.
Clare also wore a mid-length veil, also from brides of Chester and accessorised with some simple but sparkly leaf design hair clips which were incorporated into her hair by Rebecca Forshaw who helped Clare get ready at Craxton Wood in the morning.
Clare's necklace and earrings were from Pandora along with a beautiful Ted Baker bracelet, which was a surprise gift from the groom on the morning of the wedding, along with a sixpence to wear in her shoe.
Sam's choice of suit was from the fashion designer Marc Darcy - a ‘Dion’ blue tweed herringbone check 3 piece suit with a tweed tie, accessorised with stag cufflinks and a pocket watch.
Shooting at Inglewood Manor is always a real treat for me, as the staff understand what I'll need as a photographer and inside or outside, the venue offers so much space and beauty for your photographs. The main ceremony room seen here is bright and well-lit, plus it offers a wide range of options for dressing to your taste.
The steps at the back of Inglewood Manor offer the perfect place for group photos and Clare & Sam opted for a few group photos, but largely throughout the day, I was able to document the fun and laughter without staging or posing guests which isn't my style.
It's real moments like these that I love and it doesn't always require a couple to be looking directly at the camera.
Outdoor games for the children, ring toss and bean bag throw were so simple but kept the small ones entertained in the huge grounds.
During the day guests enjoyed the music of harpist, Susan Lambert who played during the ceremony right through the wedding breakfast and really set the mood. She took requests from her repertoire along with Disney for the kids and modern songs, also learning Clare & Sam's wedding dance song to play in the background during the signing of the register.
The gardens and stunning wisteria archways at Inglewood offered a stunning backdrop for some informal shots of the bridal party after which me, Clare and Sam headed over towards the lake for some photographs away from the guests - which I always think is so important to give a couple time out with each other too.
"Real" moments like those below are always great to capture - I'm not sure what was happening here - but it was making me laugh along with Clare & Sam so I just shot away and captured their smiles. No doubt it may have been Clare's heels sinking into the grass, but moments like these can be just as special as others!
Clare & Sam had a 3 tier cake, with white chocolate and raspberry flavour for the top and bottom tier and chocolate and salted caramel for the middle tier. The cake’s icing was made to resemble tree bark, with flowers matching our wedding flowers perfectly, a sugar bird and S & C carved into the bark.
On the day, all of the catering was provided in-house by Inglewood. Guests enjoyed canapés including a mini Yorkshire pudding with horse radish, duck hoisin spring rolls, mushroom arancini balls and a Malibu and watermelon cooler which were served after the ceremony with welcome drinks. There was also a beer bike filled with bottles of Peroni for the guests to help themselves throughout the day, which proved very popular with the guests and Sam.
After the wedding breakfast, we were treated to a beautiful sunset, so Clare & Sam headed outside with me for some shots in the wooded gardens to the rear of the Manor, again giving them a bit of time with each other to catch-up and allow me to capture some really special portraits.
Speaking recently to Your Cheshire & Merseyside Wedding Magazine, Clare & Sam said about their day;
"We were both feeling nervous on the day especially leading up to and during the ceremony. After the ceremony, we could relax and thankfully the weather cleared up, so we could go out on the terrace and enjoy drinks with our guests. We were going to have our ceremony on the terrace but it was a good job we didn’t as the heavens opened as we were exchanging vows, not that either of us noticed!
The speeches were all well received, some brought tears as well as laughter, but they all went down well. The beer bike was a big hit, mostly with the groom who had one or two in his hand in many of the photos from the day! The canapes were also popular, giving everyone something to snack on so they weren’t starving in between the ceremony and sitting down for the breakfast. The whole day went so perfectly, it’s hard to pick out the best bits! I think the harpist added an interest to the whole day along with providing background music to the wedding breakfast, I would really recommend Susan Lambert, or at the very least look into a live musician of some form.
All the suppliers were brilliant and we would definitely recommend any of them.
Rebecca Forshaw was the last to leave the room I got ready in, keeping me calm, helping me with my dress and making sure that my hair and make up was perfect before I left for the venue.
Joe Bickerton was fantastic throughout the day, ensuring that we got the photos we asked for without taking too much time out of our day, and taking natural shots of us and our guests without being imposing.
From the cake, to the flowers, to the music, we couldn’t have asked for more on the day, it was amazing.
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Company name: Inglewood Manor
Telephone: 0151 339 5105
Website or social media: www.inglewoodmanor.co.uk
Location (county):Badgers Rake Lane, Ledsham, Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, CH66 8PF
Company name: Wedding Photography by Joe Bickerton
Contact name: Joe Bickerton
Telephone: 07803 136172
Website or social media: www.photographyjoebickerton.com
Location (county): Newquay Drive, LL13 0JX, Wrexham
Dresses (boutique) – Wedding dress and veil
Company name: Brides of Chester
Telephone: 01244 390097
Website or social media: www.bridesofchester.co.uk
Location (county): 4 Northgate St., Grosvenor Precinct, Chester, Cheshire CH1 2SA
Hair stylist & MUA
Company name: Rebecca Forshaw Bridal Hair and Make Up
Contact name: Rebecca Forshaw
Website or social media: www.rebeccaforshaw.co.uk
Instagram - @rebecca_bridal_hair_makeup
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Location (county): North Wales
Company name: Marc Darcy
Telephone: 0161 792 9011
Website or social media: www.marcdarcy.co.uk
Location (county): 271-291 Bury New Rd., Salford, M7 2YN
Company name: Suzanne Harvey Bespoke Cakes
Contact name: Suzanne Harvey
Telephone: 07791 635414
Website or social media: Facebook – Suzanne Harvey Bespoke Cakes
Location (county): Grange House, Grange Walk, West Kirby, Wirral, Merseyside CH48 8BT
Flowers (and venue dressing)
Company name: Leaf Flowers
Contact name: Linda/Danielle
Telephone: 0151 345 3738
Website or social media: www.leafflowers.co.uk
Email – email@example.com
Location (county): 125 Brimstage Road, Heswall, Wirral, Merseyside CH60 1XF
Company name: Love Lauren Design
Contact name: Lauren Beresford
Website or social media: stores.ebay.co.uk/lbhandmadestationary
Location (county): Merseyside
Company name: Kayes
Telephone: 01244 327149/07871 604579
Website or social media: www.kayesjewellers.com
Location (county): 2-4, St.Michael's Row, Grosvenor Precinct, Chester, Cheshire, CH1 1EF
Service provided: Harpist (Ceremony, Welcome Drinks and Wedding Breakfast music)
Company name: Susan Lambert
Contact name: As above
Telephone: 07809 738825
Website or social media: www.weddingharp.co.uk
Location (county): Southport, Merseyside
Service provided: Selfie Mirror evening entertainment
Company name: Hollywood Selfie Mirror
Telephone: 07943 613067
Website or social media: www.hollywoodselfiemirrors.com
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Location (county): Manchester
Service provided: DJ evening entertainment
Company name: Night Magic Mobile Discos
Contact name: Ian Sparks
Telephone: 0151 653 6259
Website or social media: www.wirralweddingdiscos.co.uk
Location (county): Wirral, Merseyside