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Abbie and Reghu got married outside on a hot September day (thankfully) in the shade of a cute little pavilion at Longstowe Hall. A stunning small lake with weeping willows and distant wheat fields acted as the romantic back drop. Longstowe Hall is a magnificent Manor House wedding venue close to Cambridge. The Manor House has beautiful gardens and lawns along with a cottage that works well as pre wedding staging point. A large marquee hosts the wedding breakfast so this is a deliciously easy venue for a couple that want everything in one place.

Getting married at Longstowe Hall in Cambridge

I had driven out from London to photograph this wonderful Longstowe Hall wedding. I have been a documentary wedding photographer for over a decade so I’m quite regularly commissioned on the back of a recommendation. On this occasion Ian, a lovely fella whose wedding I had captured five years before in Hackney was Reghus best-man and had nudged Abbie toward my low key documentary approach. I met Abbie and her gang in the final stages of hair and make up. The whole wedding site was a picture of calm efficiency. The wedding was bang in the middle of a mini heat wave and it was forecast to hit 35 degrees so this was not a day for dashing around. The wedding was to be outside, Longstowe Manor was set up as a wet weather plan alternative.

Cambridge Documentary Wedding Photographer

Abbie looked dynamite as she and her father walked across the lawn to the Island Pavilion where Reghu and registrars were waiting. I love an al fresco wedding. I know an outdoor wedding plan (particularly in the UK) can be a risk and a source of stress in the lead up to a wedding but when it works it really works. I don’t like to impact on a wedding and try to be as unobtrusive as possible. At Longstowe Hall there’s enough space to move around while keeping out of eye-lines. I thought the lattice work of the island Pavilion would impact on my coverage of the actual ceremony but it turns out it looks awesome! After the wedding champagne was on hand and we organised a little family group wedding portrait session including a fun ‘everyone’ picture. I work politely and quickly with a pre arranged list of the various family groups so that in ten minutes we’re finished.

Wedding Portraits at Longstowe Hall

Reghu and Abbie were super keen to have as little time as possible away from their wedding for portraits. I think they had heard some horror stories of couples being away for an hour or more. Ian, their best-man had reassured them that, when it comes to Mr and Mrs portraits I am a light touch and always quick. I had arrive the Longstowe Hall early to have a thorough recce. I therefore had a plan for a leisurely stroll to the rose garden ending and then finishing at the lake. For some of the walk we had the couples delightful kids with us before we palmed them off to grand parents and grabbed some couple only shots. The grounds at Longstowe Hall are magnificent and Abbie and Reghu were a delight. All in all, happy days.

Manor House and Marquee Wedding at Longstowe Hall in Cambridge

There is a permanent marquee at Longstowe manor, complete with bar and dance-floor. The tent was set up and looked wonderful, amazing floral design by Elizabeth Mulberry Flowers. After dinner the whole wedding moved back outside for speeches. During high summer you are usually ok for natural light right up to 9pm. In early autumn the sun dips very quickly so the speeches were outside in pitch darkness. No problem, thats what flash is for. Its worth noting though that videographers will struggle in near darkness without lighting.

Sparkler Tunnel at Longstowe Hall in Cambridge

I am a very relaxed documentary wedding photographer, I much prefer to capture natural moments. That said, sparkler tunnels need a little organisation and I’m always happy to offer my help and experience. Abbie and I had had a chat about her sparkler tunnel in the weeks leading up to their wedding. On my advice she had bought extra long sparklers and a box of lighters so every 5 people or so had a lighter. The trick is for all the sparklers to light at the same time. The result was magical and led straight into dancing and cocktails.

Award winning London Documentary Wedding Photographer

If you are planning your own Longstowe Hall wedding and would like to check my availability for your upcoming wedding then Drop Me A Line. I’m based in Hackney in East London but photograph weddings all over the UK. This year, 2023 has taken me as far as Somerset to the fabulous Sparkford Hall and all over the Home Counties. I love a London City wedding and also enjoy a night over in the countryside. If you would like to see a few more of my weddings then check out my Portfolio and Journal. In the mean time, I look forward to hearing from you, happy planning.

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