Rhian Hatton and Greg Pickering enjoyed a sunny September wedding in the Cotswolds

It was just two days shy of exactly ten years when Rhian and Greg got married, a relationship which had started at medical school at Bristol University and had then been marked with an engagement ring during a surprise trip to Barcelona.
When it came to planning their wedding, the beautiful Cotswolds was the ideal location between their home and their families’, and the gorgeous Stone Barn ticked all their venue boxes. “We especially liked the exclusive use feature, and the fact that there was a stunning and distinct space for the ceremony in addition to the light and airy Dutch barn for the reception and breakfast,” explains Rhian.
Kevin Belson was the photographer for the day, who Rhian and Greg picked after seeing his website. “We wanted a relaxed documentary style without too many posed shots,” says Rhian. “Moments after meeting Kevin and his wife Carol for our engagement shoot we knew they were the perfect choice for us. Having seen our photographs, we were right!”
The couple used a birdcage motif on their invitations, which was carried through to the decorations, table plan, table names and wedding cake, a delicious layered creation made by Rhian’s sister and bridesmaid, Cerian. “We especially loved the red velvet layer, which was a special request!” Rhian also wore Cerian’s veil, which was the perfect accessory to her Annasul Y dress from The White Collection in Clevedon. Rhian and Greg both surprised each other with a gift to wear on the day: a pair of earrings for her, and a pocket watch for him.
Flowers were the main decoration for the barn, which included two hanging spheres, filled milk churns flanking the registrar, birdcages of blooms hanging from the ceiling and vintage crates overflowing with flowers, all provided by The Wilde Bunch. “One of my favourite moments was when the light was flooding into the barn filled with beautiful flowers – it was incredible and truly memorable,” enthuses Rhian. She was also thrilled with her David Austin Sweet Juliet rose bouquet, and the unusual succulent-based buttonholes for the groom and ushers. “Everyone loved these and commented on them.”
With vegetarians on the bride’s side and butchers on the groom’s, it wasn’t an easy meal to plan, but Cripps Kitchen pulled it off with aplomb. “The food was incredible!” says Rhian. “We wanted the meal to be a social event and each of the courses had a sharing element. We had a goat’s cheese salad or pork terrine to start, followed by ribeye of beef, carved at the table by nominated friends and family in personalised aprons and chef’s hats, or French onion tart with potato dauphinoise and green beans. Dessert was a chocolate brownie with vanilla ice cream, then finished off with espresso martinis and macaroons, and we had pizzas later on in the evening.” Sounds like a memorable wedding breakfast to us!
Guests also enjoyed some fantastic entertainment throughout the reception, as Rhian details: “Most guests arrived via a vintage red Routemaster bus, and we had a string quartet playing during the reception and drinks. Throughout the day we had Oli from Spoolfrog wandering around recording our very own marryoke video, which proved immense fun both for those taking part and watching from a distance. Later in the day we had a photobooth in place of a typical guestbook, and the Zu Zu Men then provided the evening’s musical entertainment.”
Rhian has some tips for couples planning their day. “Make sure you do what you want to do and not what other people or what you think other people want you to do. Try and relax and just enjoy the day as it goes by in a flash! We had a fantastic day full of family, friends, fun and laughter. Our dream wedding and more!”

Details

Ceremony and reception venue Stone Barn, near Upper Windrush, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire GL54 3RF T: 01285 721909 W: www.crippsstonebarn.com
Photographer Kevin Belson Photography T: 07582 139900 W: www.kevinbelson.com
Catering Cripps Kitchen T: 01285 721900 W: www.crippsbarn.com
Baz and Fred’s Mobile Pizzeria W: www.bazfred.com
Wedding dress The White Collection, 30 Hill Road, Clevedon BS21 7PH T: 01275 876056 W: www.thewhitecollectionbridal.co.uk
Groom’s outfit Ted Baker W: www.tedbaker.com Thomas Pink W: www.thomaspink.com
Hair Bella Bridal Hair T: 07789 735691 W: www.bellabridalhair.co.uk
Make-up Emily Tarrant T: 07887 577606 W: www.emilytarrantmakeup.com
Flowers The Wilde Bunch T: 07966 183530 W: www.thewildebunch.co.uk
Entertainment Vyne String Quartet  W: www.vynestringquartet.co.uk
The Zu Zu Men W: www.thezuzumen.com
Vintage bus hire Past Time Bus W: www.pasttimebus.com
Photobooth Party Booth Hire W: www.partyboothhire.co.uk
Spoolfrog W: www.spoolfrog.co.uk