Helen and Mark’s Real Life Wedding

Helen and Mark

22/08/2004 – St Peter and St James’ Scholes, Cleckheaton, West Yorkshire
The Holiday Inn, Clifton, West Yorkshire


How and when did you meet?

Mark and I met at work six and a half years ago. He only worked there for three months! After about a month he came into work and told my mum (who worked at the same place) that he and his girlfriend had split up. Never one to waste time I got straight on the phone to him and asked him if he wanted to go out that Saturday. Fortunately he said yes and we have never looked back since.

Where, when and how did he (or you!) propose?

Mark proposed half an hour after I gave birth to our son Lucas. It was lovely – he had the diamond solitaire ring and everything. I looked a little worse for wear but was very happy.

Did you have hen and stag celebrations?

Of course, you can’t get married without a good send off! My hen night was in Blackpool – I went clubbing with 17 friends including my mum and mother in law. It was a great night. Mark and 30 lads went to York races in the day and clubbing in Leeds at night. A good night was had by all apparently, although as soon as they got into the races at 12 o’clock they lost my father and my uncle! They both turned up after a very heavy night at my mum’s house – needless to say she was less than impressed!

Did your groom help you with the wedding planning?

Mark was fantastic – he left everything to me! He did arrange a surprise honeymoon at Lumley Castle and arranged for my mum and dad to look after the children while we went.

Did you use confetti to plan your wedding? If so, how did the website help you?

I got a lot of tips from Confetti, especially the emails. I also got some great ideas for the table decorations.

Do you have a confetti web page?


Did you buy any confetti products for your wedding? If so, did you visit a store, buy online or by mail order?

No, I didn’t buy anything.

Tell us about your outfit, and where you bought it.

I wore a Gold duchess satin gown, which had a heavily boned bodice and crystal bead detail. The skirt had an Edwardian sweep front, and a full skirt and the back had a bustle effect which fell in layers into the full train. I hired this from a shop in Leeds.

Did you have bridesmaids? If so, who did you choose and what did they wear?

I had two bridesmaids – my sister Vicky and our daughter Isabel. Vicky wore a two piece long skirt and corset style top in burnt orange, and Isabel wore a fairy dress.

Who did your groom choose for his best man and ushers, and what did they wear?

Mark chose his two best friends for his best men – Anton Teasdale and Andrew Tolson. I chose my cousin’s son Kye Doherty to be usher. They all wore the same suits with a gold waistcoat and gold cravat.

Did you have a civil or religious ceremony?

We had a lovely religious ceremony in Scholes church. It was made extra special by the fact that a Roman Catholic priest, Father Wilson, joined in the ceremony. Mark is a Roman Catholic but the church where I grew up is Church of England so I arranged for the priest to come and bless us. It was a complete surprise for Mark and he was very pleased.

Where did you hold your ceremony?

St Peter and St James’ Scholes in Cleckheaton.

Where did you hold your reception?

The Holiday Inn in Clifton.

Did you have any special wedding transport?

We had a white Rolls Royce.

How many guests did you invite to your wedding, and did you have a separate evening guest list?

We invited 120 guests who were mainly family. We only had one ‘do’. We got married at 4pm and sat down for dinner at 6.30 so we could party the rest of the night away.

Did your reception have a particular theme in terms of colour or style?

The reception was decorated in ivory and gold, even down to the attendants’ gifts.

How did you incorporate this in to your table settings?

It was lovely – we had plain white tablecloth and I made gold favours for the men and ladies and gold gift bags for the children.

Did you give your guests favours?

Yes, the men had gold tuxedo boxes filled with midget gems and the ladies had Cinderella slippers filled with gold covered almonds and held together by a Calla lily.

Describe your flowers (bouquets and table decorations). Who was your florist?

My bouquet was hand-tied Calla lillies. The table decorations and pew ends were matching – also Calla lilies but they sat on a leaf. After the meal, a few people left (it was a Sunday) and decided to take my table decorations home. I was left with two out of 16! I then went to the church to pick up the pew ends as I was going to give them to my immediate family, and they said they were lovely and asked if they could keep them. I was very flattered and said yes!

What did you choose to have on your menu? Did you have an outside caterer or did your venue handle the catering?

Our venue handled everything. We had a traditional ‘Sunday roast’ with chicken followed by sticky toffee pudding and custard (that was Mark’s contribution!).

What did you choose for your wedding cake?

I had a really simple three-tier ivory cake decorated with white roses. On the top there was a figure of a bride and groom in gold. Our local greengrocers that made the cake – she did a great job!

Did you have any entertainment during the day or evening?

We had a disco during the evening. Our son Lucas was enough entertainment for the day!

Did you have a gift list? If so, who did you have your list with?

No – we were already living together so didn’t really need anything.

Where did you spend your first night and honeymoon? Who did you book your honeymoon with?

We spent the first night at the Holiday Inn and then went to Lumley Castle on honeymoon.

What was your most memorable moment of the day?

The first was Isabel walking down the aisle which was lovely because she is very lazy and hadn’t walked much before that. The second was when I asked Lucas to stand with us for a photos and he hid up my dress!

Is there anything you would do differently, or any advice you would give to other brides?

To be honest I don’t think I would do anything differently – it was the day I wanted. My advice would be to relax. If flowers don’t turn up or the cake isn’t what you wanted, it doesn’t matter as long as you two are there. Savour every moment as it goes so fast.

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