A Wedding that Dreams are made of…
<Insert random superlative here> At the end of a day full of surprises, we were pretty much out of words to start this blog post off… however, perhaps it was pretty auspicious we were at the home of words, very long ones we have absolutely no idea how to pronounce, but beautiful and mysterious nonetheless. Yes, we were at the headquarters of the Double L, the Welsh Language and Heritage Centre, at Nant Gwrtheyrn near Nefyn, on the North Welsh coast on the Llŷn Pennisula. Becci and Harry chose this unique and remote venue as it was close to their families’ hearts. Indeed, Becci stayed with her grandparents in nearby Abersoch and visited many times during her childhood with her siblings. Nant Gwrtheryn sits in a truly unique location, upon a dramatic cliff-top with stunning panoramic views.
Porth y Nant lies in a small valley, Nant Gwrtheyrn, that runs down the lower slopes of Yr Eifl mountain towards the sea. Porth y Nant was abandoned during the Second World War, as demand fell for its quarry products. There are plenty of reminders of the village’s past, nonetheless than the beautiful terraced workers’ cottages that a lot of the wedding guests were staying in, and where Harry and his boys got ready for his big day.
Special Kind of Place
Nant Gwrtheyrn is a special kind of place with the only access being via a 1:4 downwards hill; the dramatic rocky outcrops, stunning woodlands, deep ravine and winding road with a number of hairpin bends all add to the suspense as you turn the last switchback (whilst holding your breath) to see the breathtaking views down to the Irish Sea.
Dipping at Dawn…
Talking of the Irish sea, Harry and his boys went for a bracing early morning swim in the sea on the morning of the wedding. A few beers later, he donned his ultra-smart No1 military uniform with help from some of his Army pals (it’s a lot more complicated than I gave it credit for, much more than a pair of shiny boots!). After a quick swig of his hip flask, Harry headed over to the chapel with his Groomsmen and two Best Men. The loud laughter and banter between them filled the air for most of the day and it was clear to see how close they all were – Harry being the loudest of all!
Becci and her team prepared for the day in familiar surroundings at her family’s childhood holiday retreat; her Grandparents’ Abersoch home, along with her mum, 2 pretty flower girls and Flip-flop the dog. Two of Becci’s uncles drove the bridal party to the venue in Grandad’s Rolls Royce and Bentley. The family affair continued when Harry’s Uncle conducted the Ceremony inside the beautiful glass-fronted Chapel at Nant Gwrtheyrn Welsh Language and Heritage Centre.
Arriving in Style!
As everyone gathered in the chapel it was a bit of a squeeze with guests neatly taking their seats on the benches in order to fit all 105 guests inside. Becci arrived with her dad in the Rolls, met by her two very well-dressed Page Boys and third lovely Flower Girl.
After the beautiful and very personal Ceremony, in both English and a splash of Welsh, everyone formed two long lines down the winding path towards the sea for lots and lots of confetti throwing. It was more of a confetti frenzy, and Harry was ambushed a number of times down the line. We then all moved across to the lawns in front of the neat rows of cottages for a group photo of all the wedding guests before heading inside for very welcome refreshments and a bit of a warm-up!
A Mediterranean Wedding? Wales, surely not!
After the speeches and a Spanish Tapas feast, the sun reappeared – the only things missing were Sangria and Maracas on the sunny veranda! The evening celebrations started with Becci and Harry cutting the cake using a huge sword then it was straight into the first dance.
With a live band and DJ, the dancefloor soon filled with some interesting moves and …… the party really started!
Then suddenly, it happened!
The most incredible sunset, glinting off the bright blue Irish sea moved the evening straight into a relaxed Mediterranean soirée. From a photography point of view, everything suddenly became more vivid, deep amber beers everywhere. Right across the evening skies were beautiful shades of orange and purple as the sun melted into the sea as it set.
As soon as it started to finally go dark…took a while as it was two days before Midsummer’s day… we all headed down the path leading to the beach for sparklers.
The perfect ending to a perfect day!!
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