Your Sussex Wedding - August/September 2022 (Issue 98)

Charlotte and Ryan met at university and soon became inseparable. “Despite being very different people with many different interests, it just worked,” Charlotte says, “Being at uni could be stressful and Ryan was always there, being a calming influence, which I definitely needed as I was the opposite. He never failed to make me laugh and became, not only my boyfriend, but my best friend.” The couple decided to move in together during their last year of studying and have lived together ever since. Ryan proposed while the pair were on holiday together in Snowdonia. In the gardens of the glamping pod site where they were staying was a hill with a bench at the top overlooking the sea. Ryan arranged with the owners to have the area decorated with fairylights, and they also left a blanket and bottle of bubbly up there for them. Ryan took Charlotte to this beautiful spot and got down on one knee, with a ring he’d designed himself. “Just the two of us, overlooking the sea, surrounded by fairylights at sunset... it was a complete surprise and just the most perfect, romantic moment. I very tearfully said ‘yes,’” Charlotte remembers. Charlotte sings in the choir at their village church, St Margaret’s in Warnham, so this was the perfect venue for the ceremony. However, when it came to choosing a reception space, the couple were less sure. “We looked at different types of venues from old manor hotels and barns to modern spa hotels. But when we visited The Ravenswood, we instantly knew this was the one for us. Not only is it stunning with amazing grounds, it also offered exclusive-use, which included three huge reception rooms,” the bride explains. Join us now as we learn more about the big day from Charlotte... IF MUSIC BE THE FOOD OF LOVE... The church service was an incredibly personal time for the couple, with music playing a crucial role, not least because Charlotte is a classical soprano. She walked up the aisle to I Giorni by Ludovici Einaudi played on the piano, and the ceremony featured three hymns of their choice: Come Let Us Sing, That Human Life Might Richer Be and Father Hear The Prayer We Offer. During the signing of the register, the church choir sung I Give To You A New Commandment by Nardone and Perfect Love by Kimberley Hill/ arr. Stacey Nordmeyer, before the newlyweds exited to ABBA’s I Do played on the organ. “The church service was so special for me, standing in front of all my friends and family marrying my best friend will always stay with me,” Charlotte remembers. The only slight challenge the couple needed to tackle was the 35-45 minutes it would take to get to The Ravenswood from the church. But Brookland Wedding Cars overcame that in a heartbeat, supplying two cars. One was for the bride and her father, later for the newlyweds, and the other as a VW Campervan for the bridesmaids. SETTING THE SCENE With an autumnal vision for the reception venue styling Mulberry Events set about making their dream come true. “The end result on the day was better than I’d imagined,” Charlotte recalls. There were orange bows on the back of the chairs and gold-rimmed chargers with a candle in a bowl surrounded by a flower wreath on each table. The top table was adorned in a string of autumn leaves, while the windows were draped with matching orange bows and fairylights. The table plan was created using a mirror decorated in a string of faux orange roses. The table names were all of places that mean REAL WEDDINGS 27