Your South Wales Wedding - May/June 2022 (Issue 85)

£3.55 MAY/JUN 2022 HONEYMOONS, BEAUTY, FASHION, GROOMS, EXPERT ADVICE, FREEBIES AND MORE Fun transport ideas It ’s all about the journey WIN! A two-night stay in the Lake District Local wonders Venues in Neath and Barry A DREAM COME TRUE Storybook settings Fun in the sun Honeymoon special

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REGULARS 6 EDITOR’S LETTER What to look out for in this issue 10 NEARLYWED NEWS Catch up on the latest from around South Wales 13 FREEBIES & OFFERS Great giveaways and discounts up for grabs 55 HOT TOPIC Our experts answer your questions 88 COMPETITION Win a two-night stay in the Lake District, worth £1,500 CONTENTS MAY/JUNE 2022 On the cover... This issue’s cover was organised by Bars of Distinction ( and photographed by Michelle Huggleston Photography ( at the charming Llandough Castle Garden Weddings ( To see the full shoot and list of suppliers, turn to page 69. VENUES 15 SPOTLIGHT ON NEATH TO BARRY Discover some of the best venues in the area 23 FAIRYTALE ROMANCE Tie the knot in a storybook setting 23 FEATURES 47 DELECTABLE DELIGHTS The latest cake trends 52 WHERE DOES THE TIME GO? County Wedding Magazines’ senior editor, Melissa Barker, shares her wedding planning journey 61 GIRLS JUST WANT TO HAVE FUN This styled shoot at Manor Park Country House is all about spending time with your best friends 65 YOUR CARRIAGE AWAITS Fun transport options 69 CLASSIC ELEGANCE Full of inspiration, this summery styled shoot at Llandough Castle Garden Weddings was put together by a team of talented suppliers 61 3

FASHION & BEAUTY 72 FASHION FOCUS Fashion editor Claire Ridley reveals her latest bridal fashion news, buys and launches 73 THE FINER DETAILS This season’s wedding dresses are boasting statement straps that will never go out of fashion 78 HONEYMOON LUST-HAVES These bright and bold pieces are suitcase essentials 79 CITY GIRL New wedding start-up business P.S. Bridal has collaborated with a team of talented suppliers to create this fashionable shoot 82 BEAUTY BUZZ Beauty editor Kelly Andrews reveals all the latest must-haves for the bride-to-be 84 TRESSES TO IMPRESS Whatever challenges your hair throws at you, there's a product to help you conquer all and we've put some of them to the test 86 BEAUTY Q&A Local professionals solve your problems 29 41 REAL WEDDINGS 29 MAKING WAVES Liz and Aled had a whimsical-themed day at Oldwalls Gower 34 FLY AWAY WITH ME Amrit and Ash celebrated their love with a travel-themed wedding at St Tewdrics House 41 GOTHIC ROMANCE Opting for a black and white travel theme, Craig and Jess tied the knot at the beautiful Craig Y Nos Castle GROOMS 89 GROOMS’ NEWS Grooms editor Melissa Barker reveals the latest best buys and product launches 90 HUE COMPLETE ME Pastel hues are a popular trend for spring and summer nuptials HONEYMOONS 92 HONEYMOON NEWS Travel editor Melissa Barker reveals new openings and honeymoon essentials 94 A ROMANTIC ESCAPE Melissa Barker reveals why Mauritius is the perfect honeymoon destination 96 ESCAPE TO THE FOREST Sarah Gallivan discovers the great outdoors at Nottinghamshire's Sherwood Hideaway 94 4

Opening Hours Monday: Closed Tuesday-Saturday: 10am-4pm Sunday: Closed Out of hour appointments available. 01834 862 780 60 St James Street, Narberth, Pembrokeshire SA67 7DA

It recently dawned on me that this is my penultimate issue before I become a married woman – it still feels weird saying that! Our July 2022 wedding is just around the corner, and I don’t know where the time has gone. I’m getting ready to have my final dress fitting, my hair and make-up trial and confirm all the lastminute details. I feel a bit lost when it comes to my hair as I can’t decide on a style, and as someone who never wears make-up, I feel a bit overwhelmed by the whole process. I’m hoping the professionals will have some ideas and come up with a look that ties in with our rustic-theme. I’m also excited to finally give notice this month. Our local registry office is still overwhelmed by the backlog caused by the pandemic and is only taking bookings for weddings three months in advance, so we’ve had to wait until now to book our appointment, but fingers crossed it all goes well! This issue, to help you on your planning journey, we’ve put together showstopping features focusing on cakes and transport. We’re also looking at venues in Neath and Barry, the latest fashion trends and must-see honeymoon destinations. You can submit your wedding or styled shoot at Melissa x Melissa Bark r, Senior Editor Pastel hues are a popular trend for the groom-to-be this summer. Where does the time go? 90 88 52 73 WIN a two-night stay in the Lake District worth £1,500! Read all about my wedding planning journey. Whether it’s one-shoulder, illusion styles, off-the-shoulder or barely there, this season’s dresses are boasting statement straps that will never go out of fashion. 6 ISSN 1756-6428 EDITORIAL 01376 535 611 Melissa Barker | Senior Editor, Grooms and Travel Editor Danielle Harvey | Managing Editor Kelly Andrews | Deputy Managing Editor and Beauty Editor Claire Ridley | Fashion Editor DESIGN 01376 535 616 Graphic Designers | Sarah Hill Stephanie Hodder | Vicky O’Connor Production Assistant | Lorna Butcher Digital Marketing Coordinator Katie Laley Web Development Manager Stuart Weatherley ADVERTISING Sales & Events Director Sarah Ellis | 01376 538 490 Account Manager Karen Cox | 01376 538 495 Subscriptions 01376 514 000 ACCOUNTS 01376 535 616 Accounting Manager | Derrick James Your South Wales Wedding is solely owned, published and designed by KD Media Publishing. Whilst every effort was made to ensure the information in this magazine was correct at the time of going to press, the publishers cannot accept legal responsibility for any errors or omissions, nor can they accept responsibility for advert content, or of the standing of advertisers or by the editorial contributions. The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher. Your South Wales Wedding is published six times a year. Subscription rates are £18.20 per annum (incl. p+p). Cheques should be made out to KD Media Publishing and sent to Your South Wales Wedding, c/o KD Media Publishing, Pantile House, Newlands Drive, Witham, Essex CM8 2AP. @CountyWeddingMagazines @CountyWeddings @cwm_wedding Visit us online at and cwe COUNTY WEDDING EVENTS

41 Opting for a black and white colour scheme, Craig and Jess tied the knot at the beautiful Craig Y Nos Castle. Amrit and Ash celebrated their love with a travel-themed wedding at St Tewdrics House. 34 29 Liz and Aled had a whimsical-themed day at Oldwalls Gower. Melissa Barker reveals why Mauritius is the perfect honeymoon destination. 94 The latest resort openings and travel essentials. 92 P.S. Bridal has collaborated with a team of talented suppliers to create this fashionable shoot. 79 This styled shoot at Manor Park Country House is all about spending time with your best friends. 61 EDITOR’S LETTER 7

01633 243943 | 7 Clytha Park Road, Newport, Gwent, SouthWales NP20 4NZ all about eve occasionwear all about eve bridal

NEWS Nearlywed All the latest from around South Wales CONGRATULATIONS! Voco St. David’s, Cardiff, has scooped two awards at The Welsh Wedding Awards 2022. The hotel picked up ‘Wedding Venue of the Year Cardiff’ before being named ‘Wedding Venue of the Year Overall Winner’. The general manager, Mark Gallagher, tells us: “We are truly delighted to have won at the fourth Welsh Wedding Awards. Just to be finalists alongside such esteemed venues was a fantastic achievement, but to have won both the regional and national award is a testament to the continued hard work and dedication of every single member of the team at voco St. David’s, Cardiff. Working closely with perspective couples, our experienced wedding team is on hand to make sure every detail of their special day is taken care of. This allows the happy couple to celebrate and enjoy their wedding, surrounded by their closest friends and family in a truly idyllic, romantic setting.” To find out more about the venue, visit REST AND RELAXATION Situated on the banks of the River Teifi with a front-row seat overlooking the Teifi Marshes Nature Reserve, The Glasshouse is a new property near Cardigan and the Welsh coast. Composed by a duo of classical musicians, The Glasshouse is a soothing waterside retreat that’s ideal for hen or stag dos. Evolving from a humble cottage to a contemporary sanctuary, this luxury home was designed with nature and deep relaxation in mind. Surrounded by two-and-a-half acres of woodlands, lakes and marshlands, The Glasshouse’s gardens are a true celebration of Afon Teifi. For the wild swimmers in the group, enjoy a bracing dip in the river followed by a visit to the bubbling hot tub, before settling around the fire pit as the sun sets. Visit for more information. RING-A-DING-DING Anne Morgan Jewellery has successfully established itself as a destination for jewellery lovers everywhere, building on its reputation for curating, exhibiting, and championing handmade works by designers with exceptional artistry. Since the gallery opened in 2015, some of the most celebrated names in design have taken part in the annual Sp-Ring Exhibition, contributing their most innovative pieces to a collection that draws attention throughout South Wales and beyond. This year the exhibition delivers a riot of colour and texture from talented designers such as Alma Sophia, Barbora Rybarova, Carin Lindberg and Goodman Morris. The exhibition will run until 31st May, 2022. Pieces will be on show and available for purchase at the gallery at 10 Glebe Street, Penarth, Vale of Glamorgan, every Tuesday – Saturday, 10am – 5pm. Check out for more information. 10

JEWEL OF THE AISLE Ernest Jones has launched a new Swansea boutique. The new space come as part of a significant evolution of the Ernest Jones brand. The boutique has a light and contemporary design, softly lit, with a warm and timeless palette of materials, where customers can browse best-inclass collections of prestige watch brands and discover diamond, gold, and silver jewellery from its own luxury assortments and sought-after brands such as Le Vian and Vera Wang. The team of specialist jewellery experts will provide advice and inspiration to help customers find that perfect piece to celebrate their stories and special milestones. Signet UK and Ireland managing director, Neil Old, said: “I’m very proud to be opening this new boutique that brings those brand values to life. Every attention to detail has been made to ensure each customer fulfills the desire for knowledge and inspiration, echoing who we are and what we stand for in the hearts and minds of our discerning customers.” For more information, visit DRINK IT ALL IN Four Welsh Rugby icons, Shane Williams, James Hook, Lee Byrne, and Mike Phillips, have united to launch Perthyn Low Alcohol Spirit. Ideal for weddings, the drink is pronounced “Pear-thin” and takes its name from the Welsh meaning of belonging. Perthyn is inspired by the memory of the grass beneath your feet, the sound of the crowd, the thrill of the game, but most importantly, the friendships formed along the journey. Perthyn Low Alcohol Spirit uses locally and responsibly sourced botanicals to ensure a true taste of belonging, as interpreted by knowledgeable and passionate distillers. It’s distilled in Cardiff Distillery, which offers an ideal climate, along with quality local botanicals, in the shadows of the world-famous Principality Stadium. These botanicals make for a zesty spirit with notes of citrus, cardamon and thyme. Shane Williams, the co-founder of Perthyn Low Alcohol Spirit, says: “We created Perthyn Low Alcohol Spirit to find a sense of belonging and share that with other individuals who value authenticity, reciprocity and quality. Perthyn is perfect for health focussed individuals who want to feel included without having to compromise on taste or well-being. Perthyn is a constant reminder of how you want to live, so you can try to embody that happiness and bring it with you every day.” Head over to for more information. JUST ONE SLICE The Naked Vegan in Cardiff has updated its website. The owner, Sarah Powney, tells us: “A few years ago, I decided to take the plunge and started baking for a living. I set up The Naked Vegan and wanted to create fabulous products using only the finest pure naked ingredients, hence the name. I’m always coming up with new ideas and spend months perfecting recipes and designs, because of this, everyone can enjoy my wonderful bakes. My passion is to make the best-tasting products that everyone, not just vegans, can enjoy. All our designs are handcrafted in a vegan-only kitchen, and we will work with you to ensure you have the perfect centrepiece for your special day. We have been inundated with weddings for upcoming spring and summer nuptials. We’re having our website re-designed and are looking for a new premises as we need more space to showcase our wonderful cakes.” Discover more at AWARD-WINNING ENTERTAINMENT SGDJ and SG Discos were named ‘Wedding Entertainment of the Year’ at The Welsh Wedding Awards. The awards are based on businesses’ online presence and reviews. The company is a collective of professional DJs based in Cardiff. Established in 1999, SGDJ and SG Discos offer a range of services and customisable packages, including a master of ceremonies, customisable background music for the meal, PA hire for the speeches, a recording of the speeches and vows, uplighting, dancefloors and a selfie wizard. The team will move seamlessly through each part of the day to ensure you have the perfect wedding. Owner June Gould said: “Thank you to all our clients and team members for helping us achieve this prestigious award in the Entertainment category.” Find out more at 11 YOUR ESSENTIALS

• Wedding Stationary • Table Decoration • Venue Decoration • Wedding Flowers • Wedding Craft • Bride Accessories • Dried Flowers EVERYTHING YOU NEED FOR YOUR DIY WEDDING 02920 814088 Artificial Floral Supplies Ltd Warehouse 2 | Moy Road Taffs Well | Cardiff CF15 7QR We stock and sell a large variety artificial flowers and floral supplies. Our stock range is the most up to date current available on the market and are always looking to expand our range with fresh ideas. 01443 412248 • • Llancaiach Fawr CF46 6ER The perfect setting for your wedding and civil partnership ceremonies and receptions Y lleoliad perffaith ar gyfer seremoni a gwledd eich priodas neu bartneriaeth sifil T: 07598 178 177 E: Professional Affordable Hair & Beauty

ENTER ONLINE AT WWW.YOURSOUTHWALES.WEDDING Closing date is 5th August, 2022, unless otherwise stated. ARRIVE IN STYLE Chepstow Classic Buses is a small transport business based in Chepstow. The company specialises in the restoration, preservation and hire of classic and vintage buses. Especially for Your South Wales Wedding readers, Chepstow Classic Buses are offering the first three couples to get in touch a sign with their names on and coloured ribbons to decorate the inside of the bus, worth £80. “The objective of our business is to provide a reliable service for our customers,” says Louise Wyatt. “On your special day, everything is planned down to the finest detail, so why not let us take one thing off your mind and organise how your guests will arrive in style? Our fleet of wedding buses look amazing in wedding photos and your guests are guaranteed to love them. We pride ourselves on providing outstanding end-to-end service to all our customers and take extra care to ensure we meet all your expectations. Rest assured, our buses are all fully licensed and our drivers are well qualified. We offer a 1951 Bristol L Coach, 1953 Leyland PD2 Double Decker, 1967 Leyland PD3 Double Decker, 1950’s Bristol Double Decker, 1964 Bristol Open Top Double Decker and 1977 Bristol Open Top Double Decker.” Terms and conditions apply. The offer is valid for couples getting married in May, June or July 2023. To claim this amazing discount, email Chepstow Classic Buses at and mention the magazine. Visit for more information. Take advantage of these gorgeous giveaways and fab offers Freebies &OFFERS Helping children around the world escape poverty and find education, Vurchoo has launched Studs of Hope: an evergreen collection of unique and affordable earrings that represent and donate to the country they are inspired by. Beautifully and individually designed, the pieces are first and foremost an accessible way to help those in need but are also made to be delicately desirable and effortlessly fashionable. Comprised of gold, silver and mixed metals as well as ethically sourced gemstones, Studs of Hope brings ethical jewellery to the masses for only £40 per pair – proving it doesn’t need to cost the earth to make a difference. Vurchoo are giving one lucky bride the chance to win three pairs of the Gold Feather Studs for each of the bridesmaids. Check out THE GIFT OF GIVING FREEBIES & OFFERS 13

With over 40 years experience celebrating weddings, Manor Parc remains an independent family run venue with an excellent reputation for its customer service, dining & weddings Private Dining, Weddings, Functions & Celebrations T H O R N H I L L R O A D | T H O R N H I L L | C A R D I F F | C F 1 4 9 U A | (Sat Nav CF14 9UE) ORANGERIE WEDDING PACKAGE (Monday to Friday Only) 45 day guests & 80 evening guests – Orangerie only 2023 £5,900 2024 £6,400 ULTIMATE WEDDING PACKAGE Orangerie wedding ceremony, Cedar room wedding breakfast & evening party 75 day guests & 120 evening guests 2023 £9,500 2024 £10,000 SATURDAY WEDDING PACKAGE (Choice of Orangerie or Cedar Room) 60 day guests & 100 evening guests 2023 £8,000 2024 £8,500 PR I VATE D INING ROOMS | 21 ENSU I TE BEDROOMS | PAT IOS & TERRACES 200+ SPACE CAR PARK 2023/2024 PACKAGE PRICES C ON TA C T U S F O R A B R O C H U R E ON 0 2 9 2 0 6 9 3 7 2 3 O R EMA I L E NQU I RY @MANO R PA R C . C OM

NEATH TO BARRY Spotlight on... GILESTON MANOR, CF62 4HX 07794 611 105 | Tucked away off the beaten track and set in nine acres of lovingly kept gardens and grounds is the five-star Gileston Manor Estate. The Grade II* listed manor house is situated in the award-winning village of Gileston in the Vale of Glamorgan and boasts sweeping front lawns and impressive sea views. The Georgian property has recently been renovated and includes an elegant wedding room on the first floor, complete with original panelling, mirrors and crystal chandeliers. Celebrate in style The estate houses the pretty church of St Giles, which is perfect for couples planning a religious ceremony. Civil ceremonies can be hosted in a variety of settings, including the manor house, Secret Garden, and numerous other spaces within the gardens. The neutrally decorated Lotus Marquee has sparkling chandeliers, views of the Jurassic Coast and can comfortably seat 140 dinner guests for the wedding breakfast with room for more in the evening. We love... The house has eight exquisite guest suites, all individually themed and styled, including the bridal suite which was designed by David Emanuel. Additional accommodation can be found in the recently renovated courtyard, eight luxury cottages and suites, sleeping a further 24 guests, providing accommodation for 42 people in total. REGIONAL VENUES 15

GRAND PAVILION, CF36 3YW 01656 815 995 | The Grand Pavilion looks out onto Porthcawl’s seafront and has convenient access to the promenade and beach. Boasting views of Exmoor and the North Devon coastline, there are plenty of places to explore, including the Porthcawl Esplanade. Celebrate in style The Stage Door is ideal for intimate nuptials and is decorated in a 1930s Art Deco style. It’s capable of holding 100 loved ones throughout the day. Large celebrations are held in the Main Auditorium. Featuring a distinctive domed roof that is illuminated by more than 300 lights, it can accommodate 220 friends and family for the ceremony and reception. We love... When requested, the venue can set up theatrical staging and lighting for the evening entertainment. BRYNGARW HOUSE, CF32 8UU 01656 729 009 | Just a few minutes from the M4, Bryngarw House is a charming wedding venue that is easily accessible yet feels like a million miles away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Situated within 113 acres of parkland, the property combines country house charm with modern elegance to create a picture-perfect place to say ‘I do’. Boasting 18 en-suite bedrooms, a sweeping staircase, dressing rooms, an ornamental bridge in the grounds, an oriental-style tea house and an exquisite display of trees and flowers. Celebrate in style The Treharne Suite is a French antique-styled ceremony room that’s flooded with natural light from the floor-to-ceiling windows and chandeliers. It’s capable of holding up to 120 friends and family for the service. After the vows, guests can enjoy a drinks reception in the Conservatory, which is decorated with glistening chandeliers and Chesterfield chairs. Receptions are held in the permanent Marquee, a solid structure with a twinkling dancefloor, a large bar, elegant drapes and space for 250 loved ones. We love... The happy couple will receive a menu tasting evening and use of the honeymoon suite. 16 | | Wedi’i leoli mewn erw o dir parc gwledig, sy’n edrych yn ysblennydd trwy gydol y flwyddyn, mae Ty Bryngarw, sydd mor berffaith â darlun, yn un o leoliadau priodas mwyaf atyniadol De Cymru. Set in acres of country parkland, which looks spectacular all-year-round, picture-perfect Bryngarw House is one of South Wales’ most sought-after wedding venues. Your dream wedding starts here Mae priodas eich breuddwydion yn cychwyn yma

Awa r d w i n n i n g v e n u e b a s e d o n t h e Gow e r P e n i n s u l a , S o u t h Wa l e s “ Yo u r h o t e l i s a l i t t l e ma g i c a l p l a c e t h a t ma k e s w i s h e s c om e t r u e ” - J u d i t h & R o g e r Arrange a private viewing with the wedding team 01792 390775 |

HENSOL CASTLE, CF72 8JX 01443 665 803 | Nestled within 650 acres of beautiful Welsh countryside is the 17th-century Hensol Castle. The grand wedding venue has been sympathetically renovated and boasts a modern décor with arched windows, oak panelling and sweeping staircases. Outside is a 15-acre lake which makes a stunning backdrop for those all-important photographs. Celebrate in style The resplendent Oak Room is available for ceremonies and boasts impressive views of the nearby lake. Receptions are held in the purpose-built Courtyard Hall, which has a luxurious d cor throughout and space for 150 loved ones for the meal and 200 for the evening celebration. We love... The castle has a new outdoor ceremony area where couples can get married surrounded by countryside. THE BEAR HOTEL, CF71 7AF 01446 774 814 | The Bear Hotel is situated on the cobbled high street of Cowbridge in the heart of the historic market town. The property is a charming stonefaced 12th-century coaching inn, with an acclaimed Physic Garden a mere stroll away, which offers plenty of photograph opportunities. Celebrate in style The Georgian Ballroom is a glamorous area with high ceilings, chandeliers and room for 100 guests for the ceremony or 50 for more intimate receptions. Alternatively, the St Quentin’s Suite combines contemporary style with classic design to create a space that’s perfect for adding a personal touch. Adorned with chandeliers, the room has bi-folding glass doors that run the width of the suite, enabling the flourishing courtyard to become part of the wedding reception, with space for up to 200 nearest and dearest. We love... Couples will receive a complimentary menu tasting and bridal suite when booking set packages. REGIONAL VENUES 19

There are many wedding venues in South Wales - but only one in a Grade 1 listed castle. Think majestic turrets, sweeping staircases and gothic towers (perfect for photo opportunities!). Our gorgeous Grade I listed building is nestled in luscious, landscaped grounds with it’s own Serpentine Lake and Jetty. Your Winter Fairytale Awaits A Grade I listed 17th Century Castle exclusively yours† for the day. Photo:  Set in 650 acres of countryside  Licensed for civil ceremonies (in and outdoors)  From 60 to 200 guests  Idyllic photographic setting  Selection of menus and drinks packages  Just 3 minutes from J34 of the M4

Our dedicated wedding co-ordinator, along with our professional team, will grant your every wish on your special day from the moment you step onto the red carpet. It’s your day and we want you to remember it forever! • FREE bedroom for the wedding couple • FREE first anniversary dinner at the Vale Resort Grill restaurant for the wedding couple • FREE Vale Health & Racquets Club Membership for the happy couple+ • Choose either a FREE round of golf with three friends^ or 20% OFF in the Vale Resort Spa+ for the happy couple Photo: Included for you... 01443 665803 | Hensol Castle Park, Hensol, Vale of Glamorgan, CF72 8JX †Excludes Hensol Castle Distillery and Atrium. *Terms & conditions apply, new bookings only, valid on winter 2022/23 weddings, minimum guests 60 day & 100 evening, Monday-Thursday. ^Handicap certificate required. +One month prior to wedding. YSWW.04.22 UP TO 5 O% OFF* VENUE HIRE FOR 2022/23 WINTER WEDDINGS

W E D D I N G S A T M O R G A N S Morgans is a luxurious boutique hotel located in the centre of Swansea, just minutes from the beautiful Maritime Quarter and a short drive from the Mumbles and Gower coastline. Morgans is the ultimate boutique wedding venue in the heart of Swansea. Our friendly and professional staff, exquisite rooms and Grade II* listed location will contribute to making your day a very special and memorable one for your guests, and more important for yourselves. 01792 484848 Or email: 01792 293743 TRAVEL HOUSE Follow us on SAY YES TO NEW ADVENTURES Love is someone to share paradise with, make your honeymoon as memorable as your big day with Travel House. Book your tailored honeymoon with one of our experts today. Find your nearest branch:

ROMANCE Fairytale Tie the knot in a storybook setting THE WEST USK LIGHTHOUSE, NP10 8SF 01633 810 126 | The West Usk Lighthouse is a quirky wedding venue steeped in history. The Grade II listed lighthouse is more than 200 years old and offers fantastic views over the estuary and surrounding countryside. The familyrun property has won several awards and has a dedicated team who will ensure every detail is planned to perfection. Celebrate in style Weddings take place in the on-site marquee. Licensed to seat up to 80 guests throughout the day, it’s heated, has a bar inside and a audio system perfect for dancing the night away. Outdoor ceremonies are also available on the sea wall (weather dependent). We love... There is a lodge available as a honeymoon suite and couples can go inside the lighthouse to take photographs. The property has even appeared on Doctor Who and has a Tardis as a toilet and a Dalek statue. CRAIG Y NOS CASTLE, SA9 1GL 01639 731 167 | Craig Y Nos Castle is a history lover’s dream. Located on the edge of the Brecon Beacons, it’s surrounded by beautiful grounds and views. Once home to Adelina Patti, the world-famous opera singer, the castle is a grand space with a long and interesting history that dates back to 1840. Inside are 36 en suite bedrooms, a state-of-the-art gym with high-quality apparatus, a private lounge and a luxurious hot tub. Celebrate in style The Theatre is one of only eight Grade I listed opera houses in the UK. The space can accommodate 120 guests throughout the day and is decorated with a 125-year-old curtain depicting Madame Patti on a chariot in Rossini’s last Italian opera and the names of Patti’s favourite composers. The Conservatory can hold 130 loved ones, and the Music and Billard Room has room for 120 people. Located in the centre of the castle is The Patti Bar and Nicolini Lounge, both are available for loved ones to use throughout the night. We love... Lovebirds can organise a tour of the castle. THEMED VENUES 23

KING ARTHUR HOTEL, SA3 1AD 01792 390 775 | Nestled under Cefn Bryn, The King Arthur is a delightful wedding venue situated on the highest point on Gower Peninsula. The family-run property offers impressive views over the Bristol Channel, North towards the Brecon Beacons and West to Carmarthenshire. Inside are two bars, a restaurant, 18 en suite hotel rooms, a small barn conversion cottage, four self-catering cottages, five-star cottage apartments and a banqueting hall. Celebrate in style The award-winning wedding venue and function room, Avalon, has been hosting weddings since 2003. Avalon has a high pitched ceiling supported by an exposed French oak frame, and the polished oak floor at the centre of the room is bordered by Welsh slate. The beautiful arched windows overlook the surrounding landscaped gardens and the room can accommodate 140 seated guests throughout the day. We love... The fairylights nestled in the huge willow tree in the gardens is a new stand out photo opportunity. Weddings include a wedding coordinator, exclusive use of the hotel rooms, white table linen, a microphone, screen and projector, a cake stand and much more. WOLFSCASTLE COUNTRY HOTEL & SPA, SA62 5LZ 01437 741 225 | The award-winning Wolfscastle Country Hotel & Spa is nestled in the village of Wolfscastle. The family-run property has 20 en-suite bedrooms for guests to choose from, a two AA rosette stylish restaurant, a contemporary brasserie and a relaxing boutique spa. This glorious Victorian vicarage boasts views of the woodland landscape and the awe-inspiring Treffgarne rocks. The well-established borders change with the seasons and provide a burst of colour throughout the year and the nearby Sealyham woods offer ample photo opportunities for couples. Celebrate in style Ceremonies take place in the Garden Room, which has a capacity of up to 130 guests. This modern space is bright and airy with high ceilings and large bifolding doors that open up to the rear garden and provide a stunning setting for nuptials. Intimate receptions of 30 and under can take place in the Garden Room. Larger celebrations of up to 180 for the wedding breakfast and 300 for the evening celebrations are held in the Sealyham Suite. This spacious suite can be dressed to any specification with lighting that can be adjusted to any colour scheme. We love... When three or more people book a spa package, the bride-to-be goes free. 24

Truly Scrumptious W E D D I N G S H O P 1 A C U RW E N T E R R A C E , N O R T H C O R N E L L Y , S O U T H WA L E S , C F 3 3 4 AW 0 1 6 5 6 7 4 0 1 9 0 I S S T O N E @ O U T L O O K . C O M THE WEST USK LIGHTHOUSE IS AN INTIMATE WEDDING VENUE AND HISTORIC HOME The building itself is over 200 years old and overlooks the junction of the Severn and the Usk estuaries, which lead to the Bristol Channel. A MARQUEE WEDDING VENUE WITH A HONEYMOON SUITE OVERLOOKING THE SEA Late availability, please contact us. WWW.WESTUSKLIGHTHOUSE.CO.UK | 01633 810126 The West Usk Lighthouse, Lighthouse Road, St. Brides, NP10 8SF GILESTON MANOR ESTATE destination photo by Philip Warren Photography Our elegant Manor House, exquisite gardens, bespoke lotus Marquee plus our luxury boutique accommodation suites, combined with our location in the Vale of Glamorgan with breathtaking sea views, makes Gileston Manor Estate the perfect venue for your Destination Wedding. visit our website Weddi g Venue email: Create the Wedding of your Dreams...

The romantic charm of the family-run Wolfscastle Country Hotel is just one of the many factors that have made us a leading Pembrokeshire wedding venue. You can be assured that your experience will be intimate and completely bespoke. Our venue is set in modern surroundings with breath-taking views across to Treffgarne Rocks as well as impeccable food and service throughout. From the moment you arrive for your first visit, your team of dedicated wedding coordinators will be with you to ensure your day is both enchanting and unforgettable. We hold a civil ceremony licence in our Garden Room and can cater for both intimate and larger gatherings of up to 130 guests attending the ceremony and 180 for your wedding breakfast. The spacious suite can be dressed to any specification with lighting that can be adjusted to any colour scheme. Our Exclusively Yours package allows you to hire the whole hotel for your special day or even the entire weekend. You and your guests can enjoy private use of all of the rooms, facilities and grounds ensuring that your day is full of unique touches. For information including pricing, menus and availability or to book an appointment with our wedding coordinators for a personal tour and informal discussion, please contact us 01437 741225 Wolfscastle Country Hotel & Spa, SA62 5LZ | WINNER OF ‘WELSH ROMANTIC HOTEL OF THE YEAR’ †‡ˆ‰ MANOR PARK COUNTRY HOUSE YNYSPENLLWCH ROAD, CLYDACH, SWANSEA, SA NR Manor Park Country House is set in 12 acres of landscaped gardens, with picturesque blooming florals and greenery all year round. The house displays a modern twist on the original architecture from the 1700s. Dressed with beautiful chandeliers and a breathtaking, hand-carved wooden staircase finished with golden steel accents. Manor Park has in house specialist co-ordinators who help plan your dream wedding day from décor down to the delicious three course dinner. WE OFFER BESPOKE WEDDING PACKAGES BUILT AROUND THE INDIVIDUAL NEEDS AND DESIRES OF EACH COUPLE, DOWN TO EVERY LAST DETAIL. Call us on 01792 846999 or email Images courtesy of The Wedding Guys & Pure Creations Photography

ROYAL WELSH COLLEGE OF MUSIC AND DRAMA, CF10 3ER | Situated in the heart of Cardiff is The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. Surrounded by white Portland-stone 19th-century civic buildings on one side and the grounds of the magnificent Cardiff Castle on the other, it’s positioned at the end of an impressive tree-lined avenue. The college is made up of two buildings encompassing both historic and contemporary styles. The Anthony Hopkins centre is the original Cardiff Castle Stables and boasts a historic open-air courtyard. In addition, the contemporary glass-walled entrance hall and open-air terrace overlooking the Grade I listed Bute Park, creates a stunning backdrop for photographs. Celebrate in style The Anthony Hopkins Centre has two elegant rooms that are available for ceremonies, one can seat 80 loved ones, and the other can hold 50. Whereas, The World-Class Concert Hall can accommodate up to 200 loved ones, and the Richard Burton Theatre has room for 180. Intimate receptions take place in the Stables with 50 nearest and dearest, and large celebrations are held in the glass-walled entrance hall and open-air terrace with 200 guests. Up to 300 friends and family can dance the night away in the Atrium, which has a fully-stocked and licensed bar as well as a dancing area, cloakroom and bridge decorated with fairylights. We love... The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama offers a Hire a Performer Scheme where the staff will help couples find the perfect musicians for their evening entertainment. VALE RESORT, CF72 8JY 01443 665 803 | Home to 143 on-site bedrooms, two championship golf courses, an award-winning restaurant, sports facilities and Wales’ largest spa is The Vale Resort. The hotel is located within 650 acres of countryside and boasts landscaped gardens, sweeping staircases, classic terraces and a light and contemporary interior with large windows that offer stunning views of the grounds. Celebrate in style There are nine deluxe suites to choose from: The Castle Suite is ideal for large celebrations, with high ceilings, grand windows, a private bar, terrace balcony and space for 400 loved ones throughout the day. Alternatively, the Morgannwg Suite is available for up to 130 nearest and dearest for the wedding breakfast and 200 for the reception. This popular space is located on the first floor and has a bar, impressive views of the golf course and a spiral staircase. The Conservatory is full of natural light with doors that open out onto a terrace and room for 120 friends and family for the vows, 60 for the meal and 80 for the evening celebration. Small nuptials are held in the Cowbridge Lounge, which can accommodate 50 people. We love... The Vale Resort offers a free bedroom on the night of the wedding, an anniversary dinner, a month’s membership to the health club, a round of golf for the groom and three friends and a 20 per cent discount at the Vale Spa. THEMED VENUES 27

APPOINTMENTS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Tel : +44 (0) 1792 885 208 Emai l : 26 St Tei lo St , Pontarddul a i s , Swansea, SA4 8SZ (Opposite to the War Memorial on St Teilo Street) B R I D E MOT H E R OF T H E B R I D E / GROOM B R I DA L ACC E S S OR I E S S TOC K I S T S OF RO S A C L A R A COC K TA I L RO S A C L A R A COU T UR E

waves MAKING Liz and Aled had a beautiful wedding at Oldwalls Gower Images courtesy of Liga Stevenson Photography Liz and Aled met through a mutual school friend. “We have a similar sense of humour and the same values,” says Liz. “Aled took me away for my birthday in 2019 and proposed at Lake Garda in Italy. It was a complete surprise and a lovely holiday.” Here she shares some of her favourite moments from their big day... REAL WEDDINGS 29

The centrepieces were silver urns and lanterns sup plied by The Dancing Daffodil. They decorated them with lilac, purple a nd pink flowers, including my favourites, lavender and peonies. My very talented cousin made our table plan. She managed to incorporate sketches of Boomer and our two rabbits into the design. For our favours, we gave our guests shortbread heart-shaped biscuits dipped in chocolate from Centre Stage Cakes and badges from the Alzheimer’s Society. Our cake was also from Centre Stage Cakes, which was amazing! I sent Alison a copy of our invitations, and she managed to recreate the buttercream flowers climbing up the three tiers. We loved it! Our golden retriever, Boomer, was there for the day , so we included a basket of lint rollers with a message that said ‘with love from Boomer’. Oldwalls Gower is a beautiful venue that hosted o ur ceremony and reception all under one roof. The property could accommoda te overnight guests, and the alpacas were also a plus! We added extra touches where possible, including a ‘snap it, shake it and sign it’ guest book where our friends and family had access to an instant camera and could take a photo and include it as part of their message. 30

We took a trip down to Rhossili Bay with Liga Stevenson Photography and got some amazing photos. We didn’t realise how busy it would be on a Tuesday afternoon, so it was quite surreal walking along the coastal path in a wedding dress with members of the public congratulating us. We felt very relaxed, but Aled was happy to get his speech over with. To keep our guests entertained, we had a live band in the evening called Coverland, who were fantastic and kept everyone dancing. We also had a quiz hosted by one of the groomsmen, who is the quizmaster at one of the local pubs. Guests were even given a personalised pencil to go home with as a keepsake. The bridesmaids opted for lilac floor-length gowns from TFNC London. Aled and the groomsmen chose black tie suits from Moss Bros. I wore a gown called Larissa by Enzoani from Laura May Bridal. I tried it on and had a feeling it was the one. I tried on a few others but always came back to that one. I loved the train and accessorised with a plain cathedral-length veil and diamond earrings. REAL WEDDING 31

LIZ AND ALED’S CONTACTS Venue, transport and catering, Oldwalls Gower, | Photographer, Liga Stevenson Photography, | Bride’s dress, Laura May Bridal, | Groom’s suit, Moss Bros | Bridesmaids’ dresses, TFNC London | Hair stylist, House Of Hair by Alys Williams, Make-up artist, Makeup by HW, | Favours and cake, Centre Stage Cakes, Flowers, The Dancing Daffodil, | Stationery, Julia Eastwood, | Entertainment, Coverland, booked through Music HQ, We still haven’t booked our honeymoon due to COVID-19 restrictions. We managed to get away to the Cotswolds for a couple of days after the wedding and stayed in a lovely place near Blenheim Palace. My dad’s speech stood out the most for me. Having him there that day is extra special to us as we sadly lost him two months later. 32


with me Fly away Amrit and Ash celebrated their love with a travel-themed wedding at St Tewdrics House Images courtesy of Kate Adams Photography 34

Amrit and Ash met during their second year of university. “We were put into a group together in one of our seminars and slowly got to know each other,” says Amrit. “We eventually started dating the following summer. We have the same sense of humour and connected through music. We would often give each other recommendations, and when I had a radio show at university, Ash would send requests in. Once we graduated, we saved up and went travelling around the world for four months. We knew we wanted to be with each other forever, so we decided to move in together. Ash is from North Wales and I’m from the Midlands, so we agreed that wherever one of us got a job, we would move there. Ash got a job in Cardiff, and the rest is history.” Ash proposed in 2019. “We had not long bought our own house, and everything felt settled,” shares the bride. “He took me back to our university, where there is a beautiful manor house in the grounds. We walked for about an hour in the freezing February wind. I love trees, and Ash kept stopping to admire them. I was on tenterhooks thinking, ‘is this it?’ but he didn’t ask! We walked back to the manor, and I was admiring the view of the fields when I felt a tap on my shoulder. I turned around and there he was on one knee with the most beautiful ring! He quickly asked me to marry him, and I laughed and said ‘yes’. It wasn’t exactly a surprise as we’d been together for seven years and I was highly suspicious when we arrived for the walk, but it was wonderful. I couldn’t stop staring at the ring and didn’t stop smiling for weeks!” The happy couple booked their wedding for July 2020. “Due to the pandemic, our big day was postponed, and we were in limbo,” explains Amrit. “The whole country went into another full lockdown in January 2021, and when wedding venues opened with a limited capacity, we both decided we’d had enough of waiting. We booked to get married at Castell Coch in April 2021 with just two of my bridesmaids as witnesses. We surprised everyone by telling them we had gotten married! It was a magical, romantic way to do it, but we were really excited to have a big party with our friends and family in the summer.” SETTING THE SCENE “St Tewdrics House is absolutely stunning, and we loved that it could be decorated to suit any theme,” recalls the bride. “As we drew closer to the big day, it became clear that it was going to be one of the hottest days of the year! Last-minute, I ordered a large number of white fans from eBay to help keep everyone cool.” Amrit and Ash gave their guests wildflower seeds as favours. “It was really important to us that our wedding was as environmentally friendly as possible,” adds Amrit. “I know from talking to friends that many people leave bulky wedding favours, so I wanted something that would be useful. Many of our guests have planted their seeds and have already told us the joy they feel at seeing their flowers grow. These also doubled up as our place names which saved us from having to order more items or waste card.” “Our table plan was a custom-made map of the world with a quote from Lord of the Rings on,” says the bride. “This allowed us to make the most of the travel theme in a meaningful way. Our tables were named after some of our favourite places we have visited. I purchased some kraft card tags and asked one of my bridesmaids to use her calligraphy skills to write the guests’ names. These were then pinned to each country on the map. As we wanted our items to be multipurpose, this doubled up as our guest book. I used chalk pens to write guidance onto a pretty mirror we had lying around, asking for guests to write bucket list ideas for us to complete throughout our lives. It worked well, and we’ve kept the tags safe in our wedding scrapbook.” For their centrepieces, Amrit and Ash used souvenirs. “We wanted to avoid buying things that would end up in the bin, so we used items we had bought from different countries and asked our guests to supply some,” shares Amrit. “We also left guide books on most of the tables for guests to peruse as we wanted them to leave with a new interest in a place they may have never thought about visiting.” “Instead of flowers, we asked our florist, Catherine Gray Flowers, to source plants from each of the countries that our tables were named after,” explains the bride. “Each was placed in a pretty pot and were used as gifts for the wedding party. I was keen to inject as much colour into the wedding as REAL WEDDING 35

Winner of ‘Best Venue’ at the Welsh National Wedding Awards Complete exclusivity of the whole Manor for your special day Stylish decor with a selection of unique spaces to suit every guest; including our gin lounge, Atrium and children’s room With a talented team of in house chefs, you will have the opportunity to discuss and plan your perfect menu. TripAdvisor certificate of excellence for 9 consecutive years and voted the ‘foodie venue’ by WalesOnline. *NEW ACCOMMODATION* Our fabulous Pamper and Prep Suite compliments our existing boutique bedrooms and allow you to stay in pure luxury the night before your special day! 02920 892 232 | | Owen Mathias Joe Lewis Photography Joe Lewis Photography Lloyd Williams Photography Marc Smith Photography Nick Murray Photography Nick Murray Photography Nick Murray photography Rachel Lambert Photography Studio Cwtch

possible, as traditional Indian weddings are such colourful affairs, so we went for bouquets that had lots of variety. We wanted them to be as environmentally friendly as possible, so we opted for locallysourced, seasonal blooms. I had a gorgeous trailing bouquet, and the bridesmaids had smaller matching versions. In addition, we had a moonring covered in matching flowers which was the backdrop for our sweetheart table during the wedding breakfast. For the confetti, I went with traditionally Indian colours of yellow and pink from Shropshire Petals.” Their two-tiered cake was provided by Llwy Pren. “We love sweet treats, so we wanted lots of different flavours,” recalls Amrit. “We opted for individual cupcakes in four different flavours, and the main cake was made up of rose and vanilla and chocolate. The decorations were really beautiful, and one of my bridesmaids had made tiny figures of us and our dog, Gelert, as a surprise gift.” “It was really important to us to remember all of the people who couldn’t be at our wedding for various reasons,” adds the bride. “I asked both of our families to supply framed photographs of family members who had passed away or couldn’t be there. We wanted to do this for our parents too as we knew that they would be missing these key figures on our special day. I used some white candles and some of the confetti to give the memory table a special celebratory and memorial look.” Rather than giving their guests food options, the lovebirds wanted to provide their friends and family with an exciting food experience. “We worked closely with our caterers, Cleverchefs, to create an East meets West family-style feast,” says Amrit. “Our guests shared their food and got to know one another, and it was phenomenal.” DRESSED TO IMPRESS “I wore a lehenga, which I purchased in Birmingham,” shares the bride. “I knew I didn’t want a traditional white dress as that’s not what weddings looked like for me growing up. However, I also didn’t want to wear the traditional red. I wanted something fairly simple that would complement my figure and skin tone. I ended up going for the third outfit that I tried on, which was perfect for me. It had beautiful intricate details and was relatively light. I wore it for our wedding in April and during the day in July. However, for the evening I splashed out on a stunning gold-studded outfit, which was much more glamorous – I felt like a Bollywood star in it!” Amrit invested in some beautiful jewellery for the big day. “I found a necklace, earrings and tikka set with peach and green stones which matched the bridesmaids’ outfits,” Amrit explains. “I teamed it with traditional bridal choora, red and white wedding bangles, which are the mark of a new bride. When our wedding got postponed in 2020, I already had my outfit ready and had splashed out on my dream shoes from Harriet Wilde, which I had my eye on from the moment Ash proposed. I wore those for our secret wedding and again for the party in July before changing into more comfortable gold heels for the evening. I also had a custom-made clutch bag from Atiya Choudhury, which matched my shoes. I plan to use the shoes and bag on our wedding anniversaries for the rest of our lives. I finished my look with hair and make-up styled by the talented Janet White-Ashby & Co.” “Ash chose a navy tuxedo with a black lapel, and his groomsmen opted for black tuxedos,” recalls the bride. “He wanted a different kind of suit to his everyday work attire, so a tuxedo felt really special.” The bridesmaids wore lehengas. “Three had green tops with gold embroidery and peach skirts while my maid-of-honour wore a different style,” adds Amrit. “It was lovely to have some variety and to have her stand out, especially as it was her birthday on our July wedding day!” TIME TO CELEBRATE “Music is really important to us, so we curated a playlist of songs that have been central to our time together, which played from after the ceremony until the speeches,” says the bride. “We hired Silver Trailer REAL WEDDINGS 37