Rachel & Jon's Wedding Story
It was in historic Abingdon's registration offices where Rachael and Jon’s family and friends gathered to witness this charming Oxfordshire wedding. The School House Ceremony Room is a designated room for marriage ceremonies. Tailor-made for smaller, more intimate weddings, it is tastefully decorated and overlooks a pretty garden square in the heart of the town. It was a day of sunshine and showers but nothing was going to dampen the spirits of this happy couple and their guests.
Many English towns lay claim to being 'historic' but Abingdon is believed to be the oldest town in Britian in continuous settlement. Neolithic and Bronze Age remains have been found and evidence of a late Iron Age enclosure was discovered underneath the town centre in 1991.
As it was a showery day, we chose The County Hall, which dominates the market place of Abingdon, for family and group photographs. Designed by a protégé of Sir Christopher Wren, this magnificent Baroque building was erected between 1678 and 1682. It housed a courtroom on the first floor, raised on arches above a market space. It is now home to the Abingdon County Hall Museum.
The historic Broad Face gastropub was chosen by Rachael and Jon for their Wedding Breakfast. The Broad Face was built in 1840 but there are records of a public house of this name dating back to 1734. The choice of name remains a mystery to this day. Some say it is because of its riverside location, as the building presents a broad face to the River Thames. Much more colourful, however, is the tale which says the name refers to the swollen face of a man who drowned in the river. Equally dark, is another theory that the pub was named after the bloated face of a man hanged at Abingdon Gaol which was on the other side of the road!
Usually, in the evening, couples like to escape the celebrations to be alone to reflect on their special day. Rachael and Jon thought Heythrop Park would be ideal. Set amid stunning scenery on the edge of the Cotswolds, Heythrop Park Resort is one of the most impressive hotels around Oxford combining age-old decadence and contemporary style. This imposing 18th-century manor house has stunning rooms with carved stone fireplaces, sweeping staircases and an elegant façade. I was able to capture some special moments for this happy couple at the end of their first day of married life together.