THE PEAK DISTRICT ELOPEMENT / NATASHA & BEN

HOW DID YOU BOTH MEET?

We met on tinder of all places! I had only redownloaded it on new years eve 2015 because I was bored, swiped right for Ben and we got chatting on new years day. Ben was round his friends house with a hang over and we spent the day texting back and fourth. We had our first date two weeks later and here we are today. His friends Josh and Gavin made a joke at one point when we were first chatting that we would end up getting married!!

TELL ME ABOUT THE PROPOSAL?

This story goes back to our second date. Ben took me to Banham Zoo and I fell in love with the little marmosets they had there. It became an inside joke that he was my little marmoset because he climbs trees for a living. Fast forward to December 2017, he took me back to Banham zoo. We went to the marmoset enclosure and I was looking at them and taking a few photos. He came up behind me, wrapped his arm around me and presented a little box infront of me with a beautiful little sapphire ring. It was such a perfect little moment and so thoughtful.

WHAT DO YOU GUYS DO FOR A LIVING, WHAT MAKES YOU TICK, WHAT DO YOU DO IN YOUR FREE TIME AND WHAT'S YOUR IDEAL DAY?

Ben is a tree surgeon, I work in a quarry. Ben loves his motorbikes, he's often out on one or tinkering with another. He also enjoys his carp fishing! I'm more boring, I like to stay at home and play video games or binge watch netflix when he's out. We like to get out for walks together with Luna too. Our ideal day would be somewhere in the peaks where we can go for a long walk and explore somewhere new. And then stop in a little town and find a pub for a pint and some lunch. Then we'd go home and light a fire for the evening. We have spent many a day pre covid doing this!

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE THE PEAK DISTRICT, WHAT DID YOU LOVE ABOUT IT WHEN YOU SAW IT FOR THE FIRST TIME?

We picked the peak district because that's where we went on our first holiday, only about 4 months after we met. We just fell in love with the little towns and the beautiful surroundings. Since then it has always felt like our second home, we go once or twice a year. We have so many memories there, so it only felt right to get married in our favourite place.

TELL ME ABOUT YOUR VISION FOR THE DAY, YOU CAN GO IN TO AS MUCH DETAIL AS YOU LIKE (THEME, COLOUR SCHEMES, ATMOSPHERE, THE DRESS, THE FOOD, WHAT EXPERIENCE YOU WANTED TO GIVE YOUR GUESTS?

Our vision for our day changed a lot when covid hit, we had to have a massive rethink on a lot of things. Quickly, our June date became September, then our 28 guests became 13 and finally, our ceremony became socially distanced and required our guests to wear masks. It was definitely strange to think how dramatically and quickly things changed. We had to tell some of our family and friends they could no longer attend, cancel some of the suit hire, scale back on the favours and work out how much less food and drink we would need. We almost had a total replan with the finer details with very little time to go.

We knew all along we wanted to have most our guests stay on site with us so we could have a few days with everyone, so we took ages to find somewhere that we could fit us all and also felt right. We almost gave up until I found these cottages back in 2018 that were mid renovation, in our price range and catered to our needs. It was a massive gamble as we didn't know what they would turn out like, but we jumped in and booked them up. It was the best choice we made as they were better than we could have ever hoped! It was perfect for what we needed.

We wanted the whole day to be laid back and a bit rustic. Neither of us are very formal! We didn't want to spend too much either so we did some rather savvy shopping and I got crafty where I could, making all the flowers and little details like the ring box. We also wanted it to be really personal and meaningful. Almost everything we made or had, had a story. Some of it by total accident!

Ben and I wanted to do an afternoon tea after the ceremony too. Me, my mum, my sister, and my mother in law planned out what we would need with food, tableware and glasses, pulled it all together and it worked our so well. We spent the whole day before the wedding baking, making and organising everything and I'm so glad we did as it was just how we wanted it.

It was a funny time to be planning a wedding and to be getting married. A lot changed in not a lot of time. And to top it off, we had planned for our afternoon tea and 'reception' to be outside but the weather decided to throw rain and high winds our way - so last minute rush to get a rainy day plan in order. But despite all the hurdles, our families pulled together and made it the best day ever. And I dont think either of us would have changed a thing about it. 

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