Hollie & Ashley

Hollie Carpenter and Ashley Halls got married in their dream West Country venue

“We wish we had a fairy tale story but it was a girl meet boy moment in a local

nightclub,” says Hollie, explaining how she and Ashley met. His proposal was a little more magical, however. “We were travelling in Croatia and stopped for a couple of nights in Hvar, a wonderful harbour town. On our first night on a walk along the promenade at sunset Ashley dropped down on one knee and asked me. It was so unexpected and very romantic with it being just the two of us.”

For their September wedding, Hollie and Ashley were keen to find a venue that made them feel welcome and one that would be able to host the entire day. As soon as they walked into St Audries Park, they both knew this was the place for them. “The first time we saw the venue we didn’t speak to each other on our tour in fear that the other didn’t love it as much!” says Hollie. “It was a dream come true to be able to get married in such a beautiful venue with all our friends and family present.”

Picking a dress was fortunately very easy for Hollie. “Many brides had mentioned that you just know you’ve found the right dress and this was definitely true in my case. I attended an appointment at Sassi Holford in Taunton, where the ladies were so helpful and made us feel completely at ease. My dad accompanied my mum and me — and secretly he enjoyed it! I proceeded to try on many dresses and then… the dress! It wasn’t the dress I had set out for but I knew this had to be the one from the first time I tried it on — it made me feel like a princess.”

Since Hollie had a treat with her beautiful dress, she felt Ashley also deserved a similar experience. “Anyone who knows Ashley knows how much he enjoys cars. Being in one venue we didn’t really need a car for the wedding but we decided that Ash should have a car he could enjoy on the lead up to the wedding.” Ashley didn’t quite pick what Hollie thought he would, however. “I left it to him to organise and I thought he would choose a classic car to suit the venue, but on collection realised he had gone for the opposite and it was a bright yellow Lamborghini! The car proved to be a great talking point at the wedding though, and Ash loved driving it over our wedding weekend.”

The couple selected a “rustic, relaxed style” for their flowers by Jane at Eden Floral Designs, featuring pink vintage roses, gypsophila and green foliage. This floral theme was continued with the favours that Hollie and Ashley gave their guests. “My parents are keen gardeners and so we had personalised seed packets reading ‘watch the love grow’ for guests to plant and enjoy at home,” explains Hollie.

The couple love live music and so packed their wedding with lots of different varieties, from a piano player at their drinks reception to a covers band, The Shuffles, during the evening reception. “The dance floor was packed all evening and we have great memories of the younger guests showing off their dance moves!”

Hollie and Ashley were thrilled with their photographer, Nicky Hill. “The photos speak for themselves. Both Ash and I wanted a relaxed natural style and we were so pleased when we stumbled across Nicky. She was amazing in taking note of our style and put us at ease throughout, ensuring that we were able to enjoy our complete day.”

Their wedding was everything that the couple wanted and more. “We had such a wonderful day – it’s hard to put it into words,” enthuses Hollie. “It was so much more than we could have ever imagined. Sharing the day with our closest family and friends was so special. I wish we could relive it again and again.”


Venue St Audries Park, West Quantoxhead, Somerset TA4 4DS
T: 01984 633633 W: www.audries-park.co.uk
Photographer Nicky Hill
T: 07949 834933 W: www.nickyhillphotography.com
Bride’s dress Sassi Holford, 6 The Bridge, Taunton, Somerset TA1 1UG
T: 01823 256308 W: www.sassiholfordtaunton.co.uk
Groom’s outfit Moss Bros
W: www.moss.co.uk
Hair and make-up Victoria Hair and Spa
W: www.victoriahairandspa.co.uk
Flowers Eden Floral Design, St James St, Taunton, Somerset TA 1 1JH
T: 01823 27663 W: www.edenweddings.co.uk
Transport Drive South West
W: www.drivesouthwest.co.uk
Entertainment Dan Phelps
W: www.phelpsmusic.com/weddings
The Shuffles W: www.theshufflesband.com