Iain & Jen got married on 1st November 2019 at Holmes Mill, Clitheroe
We had just started wedding planning and had a rare afternoon free together. We happened to be in the Clitheroe area so decided to pop into Holmes Mill for a drink – we instantly fell in love. We were sold on the place – the relaxed atmosphere, the attention to detail in the beautiful renovation of the mill, the large sharing tables, brilliant beer selection, amazing food and on-site hotel.
We loved the idea of an autumn wedding so chose, in our opinion, the best week of the year – between Halloween and Bonfire Night. We had an amazing foliage installation down the centre of the ceiling which created a lovely forest vibe, and the flowers were all seasonal and in muted autumnal colours.
The big sharing tables all had long foliage runners, dotted with candles and we used tiny pumpkins as wedding favours. It was important to us though that all those pumpkins didn’t go to waste – and our favourite greengrocer, A Small Good Thing in Bolton who we get Friday night recipe boxes from, created
a recipe for pumpkin tagine which we also gave to each guest. It was lovely to see photos of people cooking it in the days after the wedding. We also had sparklers for our guests in the evening, and my headdress and the bridesmaids’ hair were dotted with moons and stars.
Finding wedding suppliers
We found most of our suppliers at wedding fairs – we looked for people we clicked with and could imagine spending time with as friends. We entered lots of competitions at the fairs and won the services of a wedding planner, Made by Natalie, who really helped everything go smoothly on the day so we could just relax. Natalie turned out to be absolutely priceless. I had already worked with our filmmaker Alex, and knew he’d do an amazing job. Our most special supplier was Rummies Bistro, which is based in Rumworth special school in Bolton – we asked them to make our wedding cake and it became the students’ project for the term, they did an amazing job!
The best part of our wedding planning process was sharing our excitement and ideas for the day.
We loved getting to know our suppliers and met almost all of them for a cuppa and a chat in advance, they became like friends and we are still in touch with them. We also asked friends and family to get involved, and one of our bridesmaids, Anna, created the illustration for our invitations (which Holmes Mill also put on a beer pump clip), and our parents were so helpful with planning too.
As our ceremony song, we had our hearts set on Nick Cave’s song Into My Arms but it wasn’t permitted, so Iain surprised me with a choir at the drinks reception who had created their own acapella version and had been given permission from Nick Cave himself to create a new arrangement for it – it was very special. We put lots of thought into our wedding entertainment and our first dance song as music is really important to us. One of my oldest friends Mikey Kenney is an exceptional fiddler and singer and he played during the drinks reception.
We had seen the amazing Loose Moose String Band play in Liverpool and they kicked off the evening with their fun bluegrass covers, including The Cure’s Friday I’m In Love which we asked them to play as our first dance. Mark Hepworth from Hi-Life Entertainment was our DJ and curated the most perfect playlist.
We also created playlists of our favourite songs for each part of the day.
Our family and friends all loved sharing our day. Many talked about how fantastic (and plentiful!) the food was, and it helped that the drinks were really reasonably priced too. The dance floor was packed from 8pm until the very end of the evening, so we knew the band and DJ had smashed it. Most of all, the wedding was relaxed and informal which had been an important part of our planning – and everyone seemed to really appreciate that.
If we can offer any advice to couples reading about our big day, it would be to write your own vows if you can. We had written them separately and kept them secret from each other until the ceremony, and it made that most important part of the day so personal, funny and memorable. Lots of our guests thought we’d written them together as we mentioned lots of the same things. This just reaffirmed to us, in that very special moment, how lucky we were to be marrying each other.
Many thanks to:
Hair & Make-up: www.tallybookbinder.co.uk
Wedding Planner: www.madebynatalie.co.uk
DJ – Mark Hepworth: www.thehi-life.co.uk/wedding_djs.php