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  • Writer's pictureLisa Flahant

Real life wedding: Gemma and Andy

Gemma and Andy’s gloriously romantic wedding ceremony was held at The Headland Hotel, Newquay on Wednesday 28 September 2022

…. And it was a relaxed and intimate wedding celebration, full of joy, with just the very closest of friends and family – including a couple of canine companions, of course! Is there ever a better match between celebrant and couple than those sharing a deep passion for the Cornish coastline? Probably not! We hit it off with Gemma and Andy straight away, completely on board with their vision of an open air ceremony overlooking the Atlantic at Fistral Beach, followed by celebrations at one of our fave hotels, The Headland.

As part of their wedding celebrations, our couple from Shropshire had planned a little break in Cornwall with their immediate family, and having arrived a few days before, they were quite prepared that the weather was not necessarily going to play ball on their big day! So with high winds and intermittent showers, Gemma and Andy adapted their plans to a ceremony indoors, with fingers crossed there would scope for some photos out on the headland and beach as the day progressed.

And how right they were! We arrived at the hotel to meet family, friends, dogs and children all enjoying a welcome drink in the bar, before we made our way to the elegant ceremony room overlooking the ocean, eagerly awaiting Gemma’s arrival. Which she did in style, in their ancient but beloved camper van!

Best man Dave stood with Andy as his parents entered first, pulling Gemma and Andy’s baby son in his very own chariot! This gorgeous boy was deep in slumber and remained undisturbed throughout, despite taking centre stage! They were followed by Gemma’s best friend Becky, and then our beautiful bride with Dad Brian, who may have quietly shed a tear or two…

The ceremony was a romantic reminder of how Gemma and Andy met at work five years ago, thanks to some relentless matchmaking by a colleague - and what an incredible match they turned out to be. Similar in so many ways, happiest when enjoying the great outdoors, travelling to many naturally beautiful places, loving various camping adventures, hiking, biking and much more.

And of course, their ceremony was a chance to reflect on their greatest adventure yet – parenthood, and the birth of their gorgeous little boy Bodhi, who was so perfectly behaved during all of the ceremony. And not forgetting a moment to recall Andy’s epic marriage proposal, which despite being during a perfectly planned walk in the mountains of North Wales, Andy referred to as ‘the stuff of stress’. And Gemma was so taken aback by his grand romantic gesture, she bawled her eyes out - to the extent she couldn’t even see the stunning engagement ring he had so carefully chosen!

We included two readings as part of the ceremony: the first was a piece Gemma and Andy had written themselves during a holiday on the coast, reminiscing about their favourite memories together, their one regret having not met sooner, but looking forward to all the exciting things yet to come….and the second, was The Blessing of the Hands, which accompanied an expressive handtying, during which guests laid a ribbon of a colour of their choosing over Gemma and Andy’s wrists, symbolically tying them together for life. Even little Bodhi had a ribbon to place (we might have helped a little with this!), which was silver in colour representing creativity, inspiration, vision and protection.

There were some surprises that prompted a few more tears, in the form of parts of the ceremony we had not revealed to the couple, including some lovely words from the heart that each had written for the other. Perhaps bridesmaid Becky summarised it best, with her observations that without a doubt, these two are living their best life.

Promises and rings exchanged, there was a massive whoop and applause from the guests, barks of agreement from the dogs, and baby Bodhi finally awoke, so everyone headed outside to take advantage of a break in the weather for photos.

Just after their wedding, we received this lovely email:

Oh Lisa you truly were perfection!! We loved you and so did our family and friends. We have left a review but don't feel it could express enough how great the day was. Thank you so so much again.

And here is their very kind review:

Wow...we just cannot thank Lisa enough!! We are so so thankful that we found Lisa to lead our amazing wedding. From the moment we first spoke on zoom we knew she would be perfect. We didn't want a stale wedding like everyone else and felt her pure love for her job shone through. From the beautiful way she wrote through to the delivery of our ceremony. If only we could relive what was a perfect day full of joy and emotion. Thank you, thank you, thank you from all the Fords xxxx

Aw, we so loved working with Gemma and Andy, and we think of them fondly whenever we visit Fistral, one of our favourite places. We’re so glad they booked us – it really was a fantastic match. And thanks to the wonderful Louise Eleanor for the all the fabulous photos – if you’re looking for a photographer, she is a dream to work with and highly recommended!

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