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Our day, our way: a something-blue wedding in Tunbridge Wells

Our day, our way: a something-blue wedding in Tunbridge Wells

Written by Katie Byrne

Lynsey and Barry tied the knot in a detail-rich, hydrangea-adorned celebration in Kent


Lynsey Garton, 25, a financial manager, and Barry Parsons, 26, a mechanical engineer, held their humanist ceremony at Eridge Park, before celebrating at High Rocks, The Halt Rooms, both in Tunbridge Wells, Kent.

Budget: £25,000

Flower budget: £1,600

Barry and I got engaged in Jersey, which is where we had our very first holiday together. One morning Barry had left me a note saying ‘Pack for all seasons’, before a taxi took me to a surprise location – Gatwick Airport!

The driver handed me a plane ticket, just as Barry text me to say he was delayed and to continue without him. When I landed in Jersey, a driver took me to Beauport Bay, where I found Barry on the beach with the words ‘Marry me?’ written in the sand. It was an obvious yes!

We chose to have a humanist ceremony with a celebrant as it was so personal to us. We wrote our own vows which we kept from one another until the big day, with our guests sitting on haybales to witness them.

The theme of our day was quite rustic, which suited us perfectly. We had one of our first dates on the steam train at the Spa Valley Railway in Tunbridge Wells, so Barry had his heart set on riding it on our wedding day. We started to look at venues close to the train stops and came across Eridge National Park. It completely captured our imaginations.

We wanted a relaxed and magical wedding, with plenty of personal touches. Our table place names were Scrabble pieces glued onto brown craft card, we had a timeline of our lives along the bar and flip flops for guests to change into.

I had a memory pin made for Barry in memory of his mother, as she passed away when he was a young boy and I wanted her to be at our wedding in some way.

We went for lots of hydrangea and roses as I think they are beautiful. We also had carnations as Barry’s late mum loved them. Flowers were really important; we thought they looked so beautiful and made the room smell wonderful! The blues and coral colours were decided on to add a bit of interest.

I was extremely happy with my bouquet, as it was exactly how I wanted it – colourful and naturally arranged. Our flower girl had a floral crown, which was a must for me, as she looked so adorable! The bridesmaids’ bouquets were posies, including September flower and eucalyptus.

The flower archway was astonishing and just the way we imagined it to be. Who doesn’t want to get married under an archway of flowers?

The aisle was also dotted with pots and glass jars with small arrangements of flowers.

The table arrangements were built around candelabras and the balls of colour on each table were breathtaking. The flowers were a feast for the eyes!

My favourite part after the ceremony was the surprise when we pulled up to Eridge train station – the steam train had just pulled in! The guests loved it. Also, my dad’s speech, which was a poem he wrote himself about the story of our engagement right to our wedding day. 

The only thing that went wrong was that the buses went to the wrong location – luckily Barry was on one of them and managed to resolve it pretty quickly. We also forgot to cut the cake! By the time we remembered almost all of it had been cut to pass to guests – but we did manage to cut the top tier!

My tip for brides-to-be? Just enjoy every second of it and if possible, hire a videographer – I wish we could re-live the day over and over. Photographs are incredible, but we wish we could watch it back live.

Steal their style!

Photography: White Stag Wedding Photography Florist: Mrs Florist, Tunbridge Wells Ceremony venue: Eridge Park Reception venue: High Rocks, The Halt Room Dress: Bromley Brides Bridesmaids’ dresses: Coast Groomswear: Ted Baker at Moss Bros Cake: Hollie’s Little Cakery Humanist celebrant: Stephanie Kendrick

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