Gemma and Rory's country fête-themed wedding with a skateboarding twist was shared with friends and relatives at How Caple Court.

Have you ever been so into someone that it made you miss your last train home? That's what happened on Gemma and Rory's first date. The couple met in a bar in Leeds almost six years ago and after hitting it off decided to meet again. “We went to the same bar and had a meal and it went so well that Rory missed his train home and had to stay with friends,” Gemma remembers.

A few years later during a holiday at Lake Como, Rory proposed. “We were collected in a private boat that took us around the lake whilst the sun was setting,” Gemma remembers. After a lovely meal, the bubbly started to flow. “The waiter poured our champagne and I just started drinking without realising there was a ring in mine,” Gemma says. “After Rory pointed it out to me, I finished my drink and he got down on one knee. It was the most romantic evening I'd ever had,” she says.

“I always wanted to get married in the countryside and the outdoor space at How Caple Court suited our fête theme perfectly, plus we had plenty of space for skateboarding!” says Gemma. Here she tells us more about planning their big day...

Sk8er boi: Image 1
Gemma Walmsley, 31, married Rory McKenzie, 32, at How Caple Court on 9th August, 2014.


Sk8er boi: Image 2aMy dress was simple and elegant. I knew I didn't want a classic big gown and only tried a few on before I found the one.

Sk8er boi: Image 2 My country-style bouquet was made up of eucalyptus leaves, peach germini, white and peach roses and greenery. Our bridesmaids carried a simpler version.


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My best friends Tunjay, Lauren, Cath and Amy looked great in simple lace bridesmaid dresses.


Sk8er boi: Image 4aI loved the skateboard arch that we walked through when we came back down the aisle, it was really fun and quirky.

Sk8er boi: Image 4 Everyone commented on how beautiful the venue was. There were so many options for our special photos.


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Rory chose his childhood friends, Chris and Tom, to be his best men and my brother, Chris was an usher. The long tree-lined drive at the venue was perfect for them to skateboard to the big day.


Sk8er boi: Image 6aTo add an outdoor chic feel to our décor, we used jugs filled with wild flowers as our centrepieces.

Sk8er boi: Image 6 The barn looked just how I'd imagined it on the day, elegant and with a rustic countryside feel.


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I chose to walk to the venue, unlike Rory. The special time with my dad and best friends helped to calm my nerves.


Sk8er boi: Image 8aWe didn't want a church wedding so being able to hold our ceremony outside on the terrace was amazing. There were even peacocks roaming around.

Sk8er boi: Image 8 We hardly noticed that our photographer was there, which means we've lots of natural pics to look back on.


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The ice-cream van arrived early in the evening and was a massive success.


Sk8er boi: Image 10aAs well as the traditional option, we also had a novelty cake made for us. Our cat, Willow, took centre stage sat on a skateboard on top [in icing of course]! Our cake stall also went down really well.

Sk8er boi: Image 10 Our fête was brilliant and included traditional games like whack the rat, giant Jenga, skittles, a lucky dip and how many sweets in the jar?


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I've never been to a wedding with its own fête and skateboard park, it was amazing and we loved it.


Sk8er boi: Image 12aRather than asking guests to sign a book, we used skateboards. We received some lovely messages and they now take pride of place on our wall at home.

Sk8er boi: Image 12 I decided to go for a boho-inspired look and wore my hair in soft wavy curls so my lace and flower crown sat perfectly.


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During the day, our guests relaxed to jazz music. Later on our DJ set the tone for our first dance, and the party atmosphere carried on through the night.


Gemma Walmsley and Rory McKenzie's contact book

Bride's dress
Abigail's Bridal Boutique

Bridesmaids' dresses


Jam Productions

Sarah Jane's Joy of Flowers

Groom's and groomsmens' suits

Ice cream van
Shepards Ice cream

Brook Price

Gemma Williams


How Caple Court

Venue Styling
Kay Dawson at Haute Katurah
Tel: 07877 139730


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