Westonbirt House wedding photography – Hayley & John

Hayley & John met at School and have been together 12 years. We were thrilled to be chosen as their Westonbirt School wedding photographers as we hadn’t photographed a wedding at Westonbirt House before. We did photograph one of our first pre-wedding sessions back in 2011 but haven’t been back until now.

a bridal portrait in the gallery overlooking the main hall

Holy Rood Church wedding ceremony

We started the day as we usually do Carol with the groom and me with the bride. Having two photographers means that nothing of the morning prep is missed. We can work alone also if two wedding photographers are too much for smaller weddings.

John proposed in the city of love – Paris. “John proposed at the top tower (300 steps up!) of the Sacre Coeur church in Paris – we were both exhausted after climbing the winding staircase up to the top but it was a good surprise and great views over Paris! All of my friends and family already knew.”

Wedding reception at Westonbirt School

After the ceremony at Holy Rood church – a family tradition – it was on to Westonbirt House for the wedding reception. We arrived ahead of Hayley and John and luckily we had both gone the back roads. The bus with all the guests had taken the M4 and gotten stuck when the road was closed due to an accident. Not one to waste time we spent a while photographing the newlyweds’ portraits in the garden and around the house while frantic phone calls and rescue plans were made. In the end the guests arrived and it was straight into the wedding breakfast and speeches.

Westonbirt House is an amazing wedding venue and we would love to go back there soon and photograph another wedding. If you are planning a wedding there or anywhere else then we would love to hear from you. Please get in touch. We have a very relaxed style documenting the day as it happens with some beautiful portraits on top.

A five star wedding photography review

We have a lot of 5* reviews on Google. Hayley’s is one of them – “Very highly recommended – we were so happy with the final photos of our wedding and both Kevin and Carol were friendly, approachable and professional throughout; with many of our guests remarking on the way they seamlessly ‘fit in’ to the wedding party without causing any disruption and still capturing fantastic, natural photos. They made us all feel very relaxed and it was a real joy to have them both there on the day.”

You can read the full story from Hayley including a list of fantastic suppliers after the images.

the bride comes down the stairs which are decorated with balloons spelling out the word bride The bride sips a cup of tea while getting her hair done Bridal preparations at home A black & white close up of the bride the best man helps the groom with his tie The bride with a bottle of champagne A wedding guest helps the groom with his tie The bride having her makeup done A bridesmaid laughing the bride checks her hair in a mirror The groom in the wedding car on the way to the church The groom and the best man arrives at the church A bridesmaid in her dress smiling at the bride The groom checks his watch in the church a bridesmaid helps the bride into her dress the bride and bridesmaid in the prep room the bride checks her dress finishing touches as the bride gets into her dress the bride and bridesmaid looking out the window as the wedding car arrives wedding guests smoking outside the church wedding guests laughing outside the church The wedding car arrives at the church as the vicar looks on the bridesmaids laughing with a wedding guest the vicar welcomes the bride the bride looking excited, talks to the vicar the bride and her father walking towards the church the father of the bride pulls her veil over her head The bride waits for her entrance the father of the bride shares a joke with the vicar the groom looks nervous as he waits at the altar the mother of the groom takes a picture of the bride walking up the aisle as the groom waits a view of the groom as the bride walks up the aisle wedding guests take pictures on their phones of the couple at the altar The vicar pulls a funny pose as he looks out at the guests The vicar and bride laughing during the wedding ceremony at Holy Rood Church in Swindon The vicar at Holy Rood Church holds his hand up and blesses the rings the vicar talking during the wedding ceremony the mother of the groom hugs a bridesmaid the wedding party in the vestry the bridal recession from the altar the bride's mother sharing a joke with guests wedding guests congratulating the newlyweds the bride laughing in the entrance to the church The bride and groom in the wedding car arrive at Westonbirt House the groom holds the door as the bride gets out of the wedding car a bridesmaid and her boyfriend comparing images on their phones the lego wedding cake was made by the mother of the groom bridal portraits at Westonbirt House gardens a beautiful portrait of the bride and groom in the garden at westonbirt house the bride and groom sitting on a bench laughing a bridal portrait the newly married couple hug and laugh in the garden the newly weds under a tree a dramatic portrait outside westonbirt school The father of the bride on the phone trying to find out about the wedding guests who are stuck on the M4 the guests trying to work out a rescue plan for the stranded wedding guests a pregnant wedding guest sat on a bench outside westonbirt school takes a selfie the couple on the stairs at westonbirt the bride and groom sitting on the stairs at westonbirt house the bride and groom upstairs at westonbirt the groom and guests facetime with a friend the bridegroom waves a Gloucester rugby flag the bride smiles at the groom during the speeches a top down view of the wedding breakfast the father of the groom gets a signed rugby shirt the father of the bride watches the groom the father of the bride gets a signed rugby shirt an energetic shot of the confetti run the bride and groom lit outsde the front of westonbirt house the first dance photographed from above the bride and groom dancing the bride dances with the parents


Now over to Hayley for the full story –

How did you meet and how long have you been together?

John and I met at school through a mutual friend, we have been together for 12 years this year.

Tell us a little about the proposal.

John proposed at the top tower (300 steps up!) of the Sacre Coeur church in Paris – we were both exhausted after climbing the winding staircase up to the top but it was a good surprise and great views over Paris! All of my friends and family already knew.

Location of ceremony and reception

Ceremony – Holy Rood Church Swindon Reception – Westonbirt School

What made you decide to get married there?

Holy Rood – family tradition on both sides Westonbirt – we often visit the arboretum

Describe your vision for the day

Simple, elegant, personal – we chose all white flowers and greenery, ivory bridesmaid dresses, lots of trees lit with fairy lights, and then lots of personal things reflecting what we enjoy – gin bottles and table names, a Lego wedding cake, train themed postcards/card box/save the dates. Both of our venues were so spectacular that we didn’t need ‘themes’!

How/Why did you choose your photographer?

We chose Kevin and Carol, after a LOT of online research, for the following reasons: -Kevin and Carol were local and offered two photographers which was rare for our area, when we met Kevin we were comfortable with him and happy with the photo packages -They offered a more relaxed, natural photo style, with more focus on catching pictures of moments that would normally be unnoticed, rather than encouraging lots of forced, artificial photos. -Their website gallery demonstrated a wide range of photo type within each portfolio -The photo style was ‘artsy’ enough without appearing contrived or completely ‘photo-shopped’!

Tell us about your dress/accessories/shoes

Dress – A customised Maggie Sottero sheath dress with sweetheart neckline, dropped shoulder sleeves and long train, ivory lace on a tulle layer over a champagne silk lining, from Rosella Gowns in Cirencester – I wanted something timeless, elegant and romantic.

Accessories – cathedral length tulle veil, pearl and diamante belt and hair comb Shoes – Jenny Packham gold glittery heels.

The bridesmaids and mother of the bride also wore JP shoes and we were all so happy with the comfort of them (we danced in them all night!) – I now have three pairs of the same shoes!

The suit, the ushers and bridesmaids

Suit – Ted Baker ‘iris’ blue three piece suit with powder blue lining. Ted Baker floral tie and pocket square. Tan shoes from ASOS. Yellow Lego block cuff links and John wore socks with sloths on because they are my favourite animal! Bridesmaids (my sister and my best friend) – Ivory mermaid style evening gowns from Lipsy.


Lots of greenery including the top table and various trees dotted around Westonbirt with lots of fairy lights. All flowers were put together by a friend of the family.

White hydrangeas for the bouquets (my favourite flower) White gladioli for the centrepieces, various white flowers in the church/top table

Cake and catering

The cake was designed by the groom and made by the mother of the groom – it was a real talking point! The cake was fruit cake/lemon and elder flower/orange sponge. Decorations were Lego construction themed with diggers/cranes a Lego bride and groom on the top. John loves and collects Lego and Hayley works for a construction/transport company.


Pianist – John Wiles (We found John at a wedding fair and we were so pleased with his performance, he played beautifully and let us put the playlist together)

DJ – Luke ‘Nukem’ Delaney (We found Luke online and again, we were really pleased we chose him, he wasn’t like a normal wedding DJ and took on board all of our song preferences)

Personal touches/stationery/Any DIY that you did yourself?

Lego cake We made the gin bottles by drilling holes and adding fairy lights All stationery (invites, menus, table names) were from Blush and Gold (online) All place names were made by Hayley, handwritten and gold wax stamped with our initials and tied with white ribbon The ‘Win some gin!’ game was DIY by us The railway postcards were collected with help from the Steam museum in Swindon, we asked our guests to write messages on these in exchange for a free drink Welcome mirror in entrance – message written by Hayley Percy pigs for favours – John’s favourite sweets Confetti bags – all dried rose petals by Hayley and the mother of the groom

What were your highlights of the day? Were there any surprises?

Highlights of the day: – Confetti throw – Sparkler walk (captured later in the evening) – the pianist played ‘I say a little prayer’ to reflect on “My Best Friend’s Wedding” Hayley’s favourite film from when she was younger (a surprise arranged by Hayley’s sister)

The coach carrying half the guests was halted behind an accident!! All of the other guests and venue staff pulled together to arrange a rescue mission for the stranded guests and everyone made new friends!


Photographer – Kevin and Carol Belson

Venue/Catering – Westonbirt School

Pianist – John Wiles

DJ- Luke ‘Nukem’ Delaney

Car – Charles Betts Vintage Triumph,

Hair – Joanna Ricarda/Charlotte Tillyer

Make up – Clare Bryce

Dress – Rosella Gowns (Maggie Sottero)

Suits – Ted Baker (Moss Bros)

Florist/Cake – friends/family

Stationery – Blush and Gold

Weddings at Westonbirt House

Westonbirt House is an incredible Grade 1 listed wedding venue in Gloucestershire. It is set in 210 acres with gorgeous gardens, parkland and even has a lake. Prepare to be amazed as you approach up the drive to the imposing facade. It is an exclusive use venue so you and your guests can relax and enjoy your special day in peace. There are many rooms and suits so weddings of any size can be catered for. Larger weddings may want to erect a marquee on the terrace.

A stunning Gloucestershire venue

The team at Westonbirt House will work with you to tailor your day to your requirements and the Chef will produce a bespoke menu to suit you and your guests. Your day will be thoroughly planned and executed professionally so you don’t need to worry about a thing. The team will take care of you from arrival until leaving.

Westonbirt House wedding photographers

We were delighted to photograph Hayley and John’s wedding at Westonbirt House and are looking forward to getting back there very soon. If you are planning your day and are looking for a wedding photographer then please get in touch on our contact page. We would love to hear about your plans and provide you with memories to hand down through generations.

Westonbirt House