Real Wedding – Mr & Mrs Hall Est. 14th March 2020

In today’s post, we are looking back upon the wedding of Mr and Mrs Hall which took place on 14th March 2020. Unbeknown to us, this was to be our last wedding before heading into the first national lockdown merely one week later, making Lauren and Matthew our luckiest couple! It always feels incredibly special when we write a post like this as we love to share extra little details about the lovely couple and their gorgeous day!

So much love and happiness was shared between Lauren and Matthew with their friends and family throughout their wedding celebrations; we know their memories will have been closely treasured throughout the remaining uncertainty that was 2020.

How did you meet Mr/Mrs Right?

“Whilst we were both studying at Lancaster University in 2009. Our names were picked out of a hat to work together, and the rest is history!”

After being together over ten years, Matthew proposed on the beautiful Fidden Bay on the Isle of Mull in May 2019.

The morning of the wedding is always such a special part of the day. The atmosphere was abuzz with excitement after such high anticipation and planning during the lead up to the big day. We always like to make sure a glass of champagne is on hand to calm any nerves!
Our beautiful Buckingham and Vasasour Suites, located on the Gallery Landing and East Wing, provided Lauren and Matthew with the perfect setting to relax with their close family and friends whilst getting ready into their wedding outfits. Both of our spacious suites overlook the garden; the stunning views offer a sense of tranquillity before the ceremony and celebrations begin.


How did you find THE dress to say ‘I do’ in?

“I tried a lot of dresses on to find ‘the one’, but in the end I found my dress in the same shop that my sister found her dress. I could not recommend Teokath in Wimbledon enough, they have a wide selection of dresses, and the team are just lovely & have so much experience!”

Lauren shared with us her top tips that she found invaluable when choosing her perfect dress:
• “Research the designers you like first, and then find bridal shops to visit that stock those designers.
• Don’t be afraid to try a wild card! Although sometimes you have a certain style in mind, something completely different can end up being the dress you love the most.
• Bring people with you whose opinions you trust and for support as it can be quite an emotional experience!”

Lauren and Matthew’s ceremony took place in the Chapel where the beautiful stained-glass windows provided a picture-perfect setting for the moment the couple said, “I do”. The emerald green bridesmaid dresses paired with the deep red hues of the flowers perfectly complimented the dark wooden pews and coving in the Chapel.

Giving a special mention to their florist Laura from Flowergirls Whalley, Matthew and Laura said, “from start to finish she made it all so easy and she 100% understood our vision and made it a reality.”

One of the most important beliefs we have is that we want to welcome every Bride and Groom and their families to make Thicket Priory their home throughout the duration of their wedding. Our cosy pantry areas are always much-loved spaces for guests to enjoy, providing the perfect setting to socialise whilst enjoying a hot cup of tea/coffee (and a biscuit!)

Lauren and Matthew were keen to build upon this feeling of home when choosing their décor. Framed photos of the couple were placed around Thicket Priory alongside photos of their loved ones who were unable to attend. This was such a special detail that made the whole place feel so full of love.

Lauren and Matthew’s guests all checked in with us on Friday afternoon, staying until Sunday morning. From the pre wedding fun on the Friday night to breakfast Sunday morning, we know these memories will be cherished by all who attended. We would highly recommend this for future weddings as it was clear that everyone had an unforgettable experience. It is always nice to extend the celebrations across two days as the wedding day itself can go by so quickly! The added feeling of homeliness came from any guests who did not yet know each other making their introductions the night prior, meaning on the wedding day you would have thought they were all friends from years back! This element takes a lot of stress and anxiety away from our couples as there is less feeling of being a ‘host’ on your wedding day.

“The things we appreciated the most were having our wedding over a weekend, as it gave us an extra night to see our guests and spend time with everyone and secondly, choosing a venue like Thicket Priory where we could all stay together with accommodation on site.”

Another lovely touch was the guest’s favours; vintage glasses collected from charity shops and served with Lauren and Matthew’s homemade damson gin. The vintage aesthetic added such warmth through the choice of colour and décor, from the framed family photographs to the dark velvet ribbons wrapping the napkins.

The speeches were a very emotional occasion with many happy tears being shed (most by Lauren herself!) Much laughter was shared amongst family and friends as Lauren burst into tears time and time again throughout the day, it became a source of so much amusement as the day went on, even bringing tears to our eyes a few times!

“Someone had turned the waterworks tap on for me and I just couldn’t turn it off! It was happy tears all round but good job I had waterproof mascara on.”

With summer nearly upon us and restrictions finally lifting, we are so excited to be able to open our doors again. This past year has been a difficult one with lots of couples having to postpone their special day, so we know that it is going to be an emotional one all-round. All we can advise is make sure to take note of Lauren’s advice and use waterproof mascara, we certainly will have ours on!

As part of the evening celebrations, guests played a game called Hammerschlagen which involved players alternatively take a swing at hitting their nail into a log. Players alternated until the head of their nail was driven to the surface of the wood making them the winner! Accompanying this traditional game, guests were able to enjoy the most amazing cheeseboard selection which was supplied by the Groom family’s business (Butler’s Farmhouse Cheese) which was truly a sight to behold!

Lauren and Matthew also had a DJ saxophonist which was a first here at Thicket Priory and was thoroughly enjoyed by both guests and staff! We would highly recommend as it certainly ensured the dance floor was always full, with the occasional Thicket Priory uniform amongst the movers and groovers!

Finally, what’s the best advice you could give to couples who are about to tie the knot?

“Choose Thicket Priory as your wedding venue! But in all seriousness do your research and try to enjoy every moment of the process.
Wedding planning can be stressful and time consuming at times, but the big day comes around so quickly, and you want to be able to enjoy it as much as you can. It goes so quickly! Try to have all jobs ticked off a week ahead of the wedding so that you can enjoy the few days before which are filled with anticipation and excitement. On the day itself, make sure someone has tissues nearby!”

We fully support this advice and aim to have all Thicket Priory couples confirming their wedding details one month prior to the day so that you can really enjoy the weeks in the run up to the wedding day, only needing to parttake in ‘wedmin’ tweaks, rather than full blown confirmation of details. Our amazing couples portal helps with smooth, stress-free planning for any wedding or event at Thicket Priory!

“Also, we didn’t attend any wedding fairs – I’m not sure I would have been able to drag Matthew along – instead I did do a lot of research online using wedding blogs, Pinterest and Instagram. I loved the website Coco Wedding Venues and Rock My Wedding for inspiration.”


You have some gold medals to award for making your wedding day amazing, who do they go to?

“My gosh, we cannot thank Anna and the team enough for all they did in making our Wedding weekend run so smoothly. Really, nothing was too much trouble and it made our wedding all we had hoped it would be and more.”

We are excited to fill Thicket Priory with love, laughter, happy tears and plenty of celebrating in the not too distant future, in the meantime, enjoy looking back on the amazing memories we have made so far!

With love
Jess xXx



Photographer: Nicola Dixon Photography / Phoebe Jane Photography

Videographer: Sam Gooding

Catering: Baba Ganoush Dining

Entertainment: Johnny Ross Music

Celebrant: Eve Le Fay – The Yorkshire Celebrant (Check out Eve’s guest blog HERE.)

Bride’s dress (designer and shop): Pronovias from Teokath, Wimbledon

Bridesmaids’ dresses: Whistles, ASOS, Ghost, Gina Bacconi

Grooms/mens’ suits: Gieves and Hawkes

Hair: Emily Hawkes Hair

Make-up: Louise Lunn

Flowers: Laura Vickery from Flower Girls Whalley

Rings: Fiona Rae Jewellery

Cake: Homemade

Stationery/Wedding favours: Homemade