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Real Wedding: Jamie and Lauren’s Story

Weddings, Real Weddings

Jamie and Lauren married at Woodside in June 2015. They themed their wedding around music and added lots of Goan elements to compliment the groom's culture.

Tell us your story (how did you meet, how did he/she propose?)

We met at the start of our final year at the University of Kent after being introduced by a mutual friend. A shared love of music and travel has helped to keep our relationship going strong. Six years later Jamie proposed on Christmas Day!

What made you choose us as your wedding venue?

Woodside is located in a beautiful setting surrounded by lovely gardens. The ceremony/reception room was perfect for us - large enough to accommodate 140 guests as well as being very light with windows down one side of the room and views onto the gardens. The main reason Woodside was such a perfect venue was that we were able to have both our ceremony and reception in the same venue with enough bedrooms for all of our guests to stay on site as well. Reasonable room rates meant a number of our guests made a weekend out of it and stayed two nights to enjoy use of the swimming pool, gym, pitch and putt golf and chilling out in the lovely Folly Bar!

Which suppliers did you use?

Photographer: Tamra Cave - No Fuss Photography. Sound system and speakers: Andy Saunders - Professional Specialist DJ & Equipment Hire.

On the day, what were the best bits & what made the day memorable?

We decided to write our own ring promises and chose readings that meant something to us - lyrics from one of our favourite songs (First Day of My Life, Bright Eyes) and a quote from Bob Marley. Lauren's sister sang an Arctic Monkeys song accompanied by her dad on the ukulele whilst we signed the register. Celebrating with all of our friends and family was pretty special.

What was your vision/theme and how did you make it happen?

We wanted a fun look mainly based on music - we had vinyl records for our table names with band names instead of numbers. Jamie is half Goan so we wanted to include a few Goan elements in our day - Lauren wore Indian glass wedding bangles and the bridesmaids all wore Indian slippers and bangles. We hung colourful Goan paper star decorations from the beams in the ceremony room. Woodside kindly allowed us to use their red bus that we turned into a giant photo booth filled with props - it also looked great as the backdrop to a few photos!

How was the food on the day?

The food was so delicious and enjoyed by all our guests. There was a brilliant choice of different menu options to pick from and we can honestly say that the food was the same high standard on the day (catering for a very large number of guests) as it was for our tasting - very impressive! We gave our guests a choice of three different starter, main and dessert options and this didn't faze the chefs at all. Our guests loved the extra addition of the chocolate fountain with five dipping choices and the midnight munchies bacon rolls certainly went down well.

What/who helped during the planning process?

Woodside's wedding planner Andra was a huge help to us with planning the day - her expertise, sound advice, patience and sense of humour throughout helped to make it a stress-free experience and we always felt that everything was under control and in good hands.

What's the best advice you can give a couple planning their wedding?

Try to make your day as personal as possible, you can't please everyone so remember that it's your day and as long as you're happy with what you've planned then everyone else will be too as your family and friends want you to have the best day ever. Enjoy every minute of the day as it really does fly past so quickly!

What (if any) comments would you like to add about us and the staff involved in your big day?

We would like to thank everyone who helped out on the day and also the day before - the very efficient ladies on reception, the helpful (and patient) barmen, the waiters and waitresses and chefs. Everyone was so professional and looked after our guests really well. We want to say a special thanks to Martin (head waiter) who really made the whole day run smoothly - we know that dealing with almost 140 guests is not an easy task and he helped our master of ceremonies to make sure everyone was instructed on where to go every step of the evening.

"Our wedding day was easily the best day of our lives. To be surrounded by friends and family in such a lovely venue with great food, such attentive staff and having the freedom to really make the day our own meant so much to us. Thanks Woodside for everything, wish we could do it all again!"

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