Back in November I made the long drive from Birmingham down to The Olde Bell at Hurley in Berkshire for Giulia and Bill’s wonderful winter wedding.
The Olde Bell is Grade II listed and has an incredibly long history. It is claimed to be the oldest hotel in the UK and one of the oldest hotels in the world. It first opened its doors in 1135 and has been taking in guests ever since. As you could imagine, with it being open for so long, many famous people have passed through the doors at The Olde Bell. Due to its proximity to Pinewood Studios, the inn has seen a number of movie-star guests, including Mae West, Greta Garbo, Cary Grant, Errol Flynn, Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton and classic horror actor Boris Karloff. During World War Two famous guests at The Olde Bell included Sir Winston Churchill and Dwight D. Eisenhower who were visiting the village as a local mansion was being used as a secret U.S intelligence base in the build-up to D-Day landings.
I met with Giulia and her bridesmaids on the morning of the wedding in the bridal suite at The Olde Bell. It was a flurry of activity with Giulia’s friend, Christiane, busy with hair and makeup. For the ceremony Giulia wore a stunning Olwen Bourke wedding dress which was from Monsoon whilst her bridesmaids wore beautiful sparkly dresses from ASOS. In the adjoining Malt House, Bill and his groomsmen were getting ready. Making sure everyone looked dapper in their Moss Bros suits whilst topping up with a wee dram of whiskey (or two).
The ceremony took place in the 16th century Tudor era tithe barn adjacent to The Old Bell. It was a wonderful celebration which featured some rather amusing readings from the groomsmen. With the legal formalities completed everyone headed back over to the Malt House for the drinks reception which took place in the Music Room. Piano accompaniment was provided by the rather brilliant Paul from The Wedding Pianists who played a wide range of musical styles ensuring everyone was entertained.
With the drinks quaffed and group shots finished I then took Giulia and Bill down to the banks of the nearby River Thames for a quick portrait session before heading back into the Tythe Barn for their wedding breakfast.
For the evening reception The Olde Bell house DJ got the dancefloor moving, there was plenty of horsing around as the fancy dress box was broken out! Before I sign off I just need to say a massive thank you to Giulia and Bill for having me along to photograph their wedding at The Olde Bell at Hurley. Here’s a few pictures from their special day . . .
If you’re looking for a photographer for your wedding at The Olde Bell then please do get in touch using the details on my CONTACT page.