Exactly a week after Tom and Delphine’s wedding we find ourselves attending the marriage of Henry and Rebecca. The venue, St Audries Park Manor House, concentrates exclusively on weddings and it is a beautiful setting for a gathering of family and friends. There is plenty of accommodation both in the manor itself and in the various outbuildings, such as the stables (nicely converted!) and a cottage, house, lodge and rectory in the grounds of the Estate. This set up seems to be more popular these days, for those who do not require a religious marriage ceremony. Guests may arrive the night before the Big Day, stay on site for the entire proceedings, and fall into bed when they are footsore from dancing into the small hours.
How lovely it was to catch up with Lis, Siobhan, Caitlin as well as the Duke clan. Lis and her friend Susan had organised all the floral decorations which were amazing. They have stumbled upon this task late in life, taken on as favours to Helenour and Henry, and by combining cut and potted flowers and plants they set up themed decorations in the various rooms and most notably in the Orangery where the marriage ceremony was held.
This was a perfect setting for a shades of Jane Austen ceremony and the bride and groom were dressed for the part. Lis had introduced lots of potted Agapanthus and matching blue scabious which she and Susan would keep afterwards. On the morning of departure it was quite a task to dismantle and load up the decorations ready for a prompt departure. Some four vehicles were pressed into service. It is a requirement of the venue that breakfast be taken between 9 and 9.30 a.m. with check out before 10. In this way the conveyor belt process which enables a daily succession of weddings to take place is achieved!