Sabina and Saleem June 1999 - How did you meet? We met in the Summer of 1996, when she was over here on a holiday, she came back and we…
Written by Paula Jones Last updated: August 10, 2006
How did you meet?
Liam and I met completely by chance. I was working at a local job centre on a casual contract which was coming to an end. When someone phoned from the Contributions Agency for an administrative assistant, I told them to look no further. I started at Contributions a fortnight later. The job was soul destroying, but the one compensation was being able to look at Liam who sat two bays of desks away. There was something about him that really made me take notice. Three weeks passed and the job just wasn’t working out. The job centre offered me another casual contract and I left, but I could not get the thought of Liam out of my mind.
Eventually, I figured I had nothing to lose if I gave him a ring and asked him out which is exactly what I did. I can remember my hands shaking really badly when I was on the phone, but after a very long silence (he was stunned!) he said yes.
Describe the marriage proposal.
When Liam and I had been seeing each other six years we bought our first house together. One month after we moved in we went for a day out at Haddon Hall in Derbyshire. Haddon has the most beautiful rose garden and as we walked into it I remember thinking, what a fantastic place this would be for Liam to propose. We sat down in an arbour and Liam turned to me and asked me if I would do him the great honour of becoming his wife. It was the most fantastic moment. I couldn’t believe that I was finally going to get married and to such a lovely man.
How long did you spend preparing for the day and how was it?
Things moved fairly quickly after Liam proposed. We settled on a date eleven months later and quickly booked our venue, Bramall Hall. In our heads we had plenty of time to prepare for the day. How naive we were! In addition to the venue we also booked our photographer quite early on. I used the internet quite a bit in the preparations for my wedding – confetti being my principal site.
I am a worrier and I really did get myself in a tizz about all sorts of things. We didn’t want children at the wedding and I whipped myself into a complete guilt trip over upsetting people. I also worried immensely about whether all the guests would get on with one another. I had lost sight of the fact that the day was for us! But it wasn’t all stressful. I found my dress quite early on and the shop assistants really helped me put my mind at ease. Also the venue had a co-ordinator who helped us book a caterer. The big things did come together fairly easily – it was the small things that caused us problems.
What type of wedding ceremony did you have and where?
We had a civil ceremony at Bramall Hall, a half timbered house near Bramhall in Cheshire. We hired a harpist to play before, during and after the ceremony which really added to the ambience of the hall. The service was short, but very meaningful and the Registrar was very sincere in his handling of the vows. All my pre-wedding nerves evaporated when I saw Liam waiting for me at the front of the hall. I just felt overwhelming pride to be marrying such a lovely man.
Where did you hold the reception and what was it like?
We had our reception at the same venue as our ceremony. Because we got married at five o’clock it meant we could avoid shifting everyone to another location and also enjoy our wedding breakfast in the surroundings of Bramall’s banqueting hall. Whilst we had our photographs done the harpist played on for a pre-dinner drinks reception and then we were ushered through to our three course meal cooked by a Danish chef. It was wonderful! We then moved through to the great hall for our disco where we partied until the end of the night.
Is there anything you’d like to change, with hindsight?
I certainly wouldn’t change the end result. We had the best day we could have ever hoped for and everyone has complimented us on the best wedding they have ever been to!
What advice would you give to couples currently planning their wedding?
Don’t get too stressed. I know this is easier said than done, but I made myself miserable over things which were beyond my control. Things come right at the end.