It was easy to see why Jenna and Philip chose to celebrate their wedding day on the well-kept secret and unique venue of Temple Island, situated on the River Thames near the auspicious and picturesque market town of Henley-on-Thames.
Jenna prepared for the day with her bridesmaids and parents at the elegant Relais Hotel on the banks of the river, whilst Phil walked the half mile through the centre and up the hill to his groomsman Matt’s flat. When I arrived (a bit breathless after the walk) I was greeted by the tallest groom and groomsmen ever…. all well over 6 foot, mostly 6’8”
The main topic was how to tie a bow tie which took many failed attempts and reading and then re-reading of instructions before finally the procedure was mastered! Meanwhile, it started to dawn on Phil that having checked every bag several times, it did appear that he seemed to have mislaid his trousers.
Once all the groomsmen were ready, we set off down the hill to walk through the busy centre of Henley to greet the guests by the steamboat on the river. Everyone looked incredibly smart in their velvet dinner jackets, and Phil had made a very bold fashion choice in his shorts! As we reached the Relais Hotel, Phil quickly dashed upstairs to retrieve his trousers whilst the guys nipped into the bar for a quick beer.
All Aboard the Steam Boat
The sun came out as we all walked along the river bank passing tourists with ice creams and dogs, and boarded the wooden steamboat for the 20-minute ride to the island. Shortly afterwards, Jenna and her bridal party stepped out from the hotel and boarded a very stylish grey river boat, following the steamboat down the River Thames.
Island of Dreams
The weather gods were kind as their dream to get married outside came true! The guests and Phil watched the bridal boat cruise towards them, Jenna looking stunning in her pure white and very stylish wedding gown, complemented by her beautiful blue velvet shoes.
After the Ceremony, the newlyweds headed down the aisle and straight up the steps to the Folly for a glass of champagne, whilst the guests lined up for the confetti throw. After a few group photos with some of the tallest of tall people, including one of the bridesmaids, everyone relaxed with champagne and canapés, with passers-by in varying sizes of boats tooting their horns to join in the celebrations. Becki Luff the harpist played and sang providing relaxing and very beautiful background music, even letting one of the guests have a go at plucking the strings after a little tuition.
Making an Entrance
Jenna and Philip were greeted by their guests with a frenzy of serviette waving as they made their entrance to the marquee reception. A stunning white stretch tent created a beautiful outdoor area with heat lamps (which weren’t needed with the mild end-of-September weather). Elegant Cuisine, the island caterers served stunningly presented fresh salmon with sun-dried tomatoes and pea shoots, followed by lamb rump, steamed vegetables and fondant potatoes and then finished with a rich chocolate brownie and vanilla ice cream.
Then it was time for the party to get started and as the guests gathered around the dance floor in anticipation of the first dance, Phil walked in with Jenna on his arm wearing a very sparkly silver dress. Just perfect to dance the night away as Phil spun his bride around the floor.
Then, to up the atmosphere even higher, Ellis Sax and Girls that Mix joined in. With colourful sparkly outfits, percussion drums, a saxophonist and a glittery lady DJ belting out top tunes and anthems, the dance floor was packed all night long with everyone on their feet!
At 9pm the pirates arrived and moored up alongside the tent. The always so helpful staff of Elegant Cuisine collected and handed out piping hot Margherita and Pepperoni pizza boxes full of freshly baked pizzas, cooked in a wood-fired oven on the back of a barge!
All of a sudden it was heading towards midnight and the steamboat arrived to take everyone back to the mainland. As a grand finale to such a magical day, all the guests waved sparklers as Jenna and Phill walked through the tunnel of happy faces, leading their guests onto the boat.
What an incredible, elegant, fun and very memorable kind of a day with some of the loveliest and tallest of people.
Elegant Cuisine, the most wonderful Wedding Hosts as well as amazing caterers. If it happens on the island it’s down to this great team! https://www.elegantcuisine.com
Temple Island Venue https://www.hrr.co.uk/temple-island/
Salters Steamers https://salterssteamers.co.uk/
Hobb’s of Henley Boats https://www.hobbsofhenley.com/
Girls that Mix firstname.lastname@example.org
Ellis Sax https://instagram.com/ellis_mate
The Pizza Pirates https://pizza-pirates.co.uk/
Hayley’s Cup Cakes https://hayleyscupcakes.co.uk/
Brentford Florist https://www.brentfordflorist.com/
Stretched Tent https://www.10×15.com/
Becki Luff Harpist https://www.beckiluff.com
If you would like us to be your Temple Island Wedding Photographer, please get in touch!