I’m so blessed to be a wedding photographer in Surrey.
It’s a beautiful part of the country with a stunning mix of both rural and city living that truly brings this home county to life.
I grew up in Surrey and apart from a few years where I ventured to University, have lived here all my life. I feel lucky to have grown up being able to visit some of Surreys Hidden treasures such as Wisley Gardens, a hub of horticultural excellence and Frensham Ponds valued for its nature conservation. Growing up I always had a camera in my hand, I remember wanting to learn more about lenses and how the inside of a camera worked. I was always told I have a “keen eye” which has served me well with my photography career so far. One of my favourite childhood memories is walking my dog at Virgina Waters with my family. I still remember the excitement my brothers and I experienced running towards the cascade waterfall and gingerly attempting to cross the stepping stones at the top.
I now am bringing up my children in this fine County and continue to be in awe of the beauty Surrey has to offer. We spend most weekends roaming around Banstead Woods where you can see Narnia Characters brought to life in wood or marveling at the view that Boxhill boasts. My daughter has a particular interest in photography as well, although does prefer being in front of the lens.
There is a sensitive balance between modern culture and history that you can stumble across around most of Surreys corners.
I love the opportunity to be a wedding photographer anywhere the UK but must admit, I get a warm glow of excitement inside when a bride or groom contacts me to enquire about photographing their Surrey Wedding.
Walks and Weys
Surrey offers some of the most picturesque villages I have ever seen. I recommend a scenic drive through the twists and turns of Abinger Hammer, stopping to enjoy the Charming village of Buckland and finishing at Ripley. This Quaint village is home to the Talbot Inn where many a sailor (including Nelson) stayed on the way to and from the sea, Ripley was built on the important stagecoach route between Portsmouth and London.
If walking is more your thing then saunter down the River Wey, where you can go wild swimming if you so wish. However, for a view that inspired Darwin and a Ramblers dream I recommend a walk up Lieth Hill. With an abundance of stunning wildlife and enchanting woodland Leith Hill does not disappoint plus there are some fabulous venues around Leith Hill to get married in.
I feel I should take this opportunity to recommend my favourite walk, especially in Autumn – The Devils Punchbowl. This marvelous area of beauty and a photographer’s dream, with its diversity of landscapes and everchanging scenery. There are exceptional views from many a vantage point and the London Skyline can be seen in the distance which demonstrates the varied prospects observed in Surrey. Legend has it that the bowl itself was formed during a fight between the Devil and Thor. Apparently, the Devil would torment Thor by jumping from hill to hill. Thor would get frustrated and try and hit the devil with thunder and lightning and once the devil retaliated by hollowing out a huge handful of dirt and throwing it at Thor thus forming the Devils Punch Bowl.
Landscapes and Parakeets
In recent years I have often wanted to explore other areas of photography and have found a new interest in landscapes and wildlife photography. I find it gives me a sense of alternative expression that is different from wedding photography. I relish the opportunity to visit Bushy Park and could lose myself for half a day if given the chance. If you haven’t yet been fortunate enough to visit, please make a point of doing so should you ever find yourself in Surrey. It’s the second largest of the Royal Parks in London and has a huge array of wildlife and natural habitat within its walls. There is a vast range of wildlife wandering around ready for the keen photographer including native woodpeckers, kestrels a range of waterfowl. If that was not enough, Parakeets are regular visitors to this splendid park and their extraordinary colours make for a stunning shot.
Apart from the dramatic sunrise and Sunsets, the best photo opportunity at Bushy Park is by far the Deer. Red & Fallow deer roam freely, just as they did when Henry VIII used to hunt there. They will meander anywhere in the park and have even been spotted in the fountains taking a dip. There are no deer tracking skills required here, simply pick up your camera and shoot (well don’t forget to consider appropriate focus on the camera, aperture and maintaining good composition). Either way it is a pretty magical place and I will always hold it fondly in my heart.
A Wedding in Surrey
One of my favourite venues is Oaks Farm near Croydon, although with the rolling hills in the background you would be excused for thinking we were a million miles from a town centre. With the picturesque lily pond and stunning cottage gardens this venue is a photographer’s dream. www.oaksfarmweddings.co.uk vows can be exchanged under the beautiful Wisteria clad Arbour next to the enchanting orangery with your nearest and dearest looking on.
If you are planning on getting married in Surrey, you will not be disappointed. There are copious romantic venues, it can be overwhelming to make decisions. The most important thing (apart from the photographer, hint hint) is knowing what you want your day to be like. Whether you choose a beautiful field to host a marquee style celebration, or a rustic alternative soiree or get married at Hampton court Palace https://hamptoncourtpalace.venued.co.uk/ your day should be about you. Your wedding should reflect you two as a couple and be as unique as your love is.
It’s a unique idea to incorporate some of the amazing produce that Surrey has to offer within your wedding. Not only is Denbies Wine Estate and Vineyard a stunning Venue to get married in but the wine they produce is delightful. https://www.denbies.co.uk/ It makes for a true English Vineyard celebration and photos taken in the beautiful landscaped setting are exquisite.
I had the pleasure of photographing my first COVID wedding this year and do you know what – It wasn’t scary. It was just as romantic as the weddings I had photographed pre COVID. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t apprehensive. As a wedding photographer I still want to capture the magic and emotion that is evoked from a couple in love.
Apart from the reduced number of guests and a little thing called handgel, you wouldn’t have known there were any COVID restrictions were in place.
The ceremony was held at Oaks Farm near Croydon, although with the rolling hills in the background you would be excused for thinking we were a million miles from a city centre. With the picturesque lily pond and stunning cottage gardens this venue is a photographer’s dream. http://www.oaksfarmweddings.co.uk
The service was beautiful with hints to Kirstens Scottish heritage evident in the floral touches created by Kanes florist https://www.kanesflorists-croydon.co.uk/
Penny and Kirsten said their vows under the beautiful Wisteria clad Arbour next to the enchanting orangery with their nearest and dearest looking on.
Drinks were served in the elegant gardens and nothing was too much trouble for the staff at Oaks Farm. Lets be honest its not an easy industry to work in at the moment and they did an amazing job.
After the service, socially distanced celebrations continued back at Penny’s parents fabulous home where each family/bubble had their own BBQ and table. A stunning rustic wedding cake created by Rachelles wedding cakes https://rachelles.co.uk/
Please rest assure a wedding in these challenging times your wedding doesn’t have to be about “going without”. Its about adapting, adjusting and realising whats important to you as a couple.
It absolutely can be as beautiful and touching as you first envisaged (just a little further apart!!)
If you do want to discuss how I can help make this work please get it touch.