A note from us…
Sophie and Tom – WHAT A DREAM! The bride looked simply beautiful, the groom arrived on a motorbike, their guest of honour has to be up there with one of our favourite guests to date (Walter the Frenchie!), the venue smelt like a dream (Jo Malone candles on every table!) and all on one of the hottest days of 2019! Thank you to Sophie and Tom for sharing their story and to the ever lovely Henry Lowther for coming through with the coolest images…
Why did you choose the Pumping House for your special day?
After looking at a few venues, we had decided that we loved the more industrial feel (no surprise with Tom being an engineer) so we wanted that for our venue. We also both love the countryside and nature so we wanted to find the perfect mix – I think we had given up until we came across The Pumping House which absolutely ticks both boxes. The Pumping House has an industrial feel but is so stylish at the same time and is one of the most beautiful buildings we’d ever seen in the most beautiful of settings. The team at the Pumping House are so welcoming from the get go and we knew it would be so easy to work with them, which is probably one of the most important things! I remember the first time we visited my Mum and Dad came with us and they were absolutely blown away and just said “this is so you two!” so that was it…there was no other option.
Every love story is unique – tell us yours?
We met at a Canadian pub in London during the 2014 Winter Olympics. Tom actually loves winter sports, I was just out for my birthday and love a good old fashioned pub! It took a while after that first meeting to actually finally get together, we both blame each other for how long it took (it was definitely Tom though). Not long after, I decided to get a puppy, Walter (who was a part of our day)…nothing like training a puppy to bring us closer together. I taught him the must-dos and Tom taught him how to High Five! Tom eventually moved in with Walter and I in London where we lived for 18 months together. As I mentioned, we both love nature and being from a village in the countryside I was ready to move back home. Tom managed to find a job and uprooted his life for us and we moved back to Derbyshire and into our dream house. After how long it had taken us to actually get together I hadn’t held out much hope for getting engaged anuyime in the near future but on a Saturday afternoon, after being tricked into going for the day with my parents, I came home and Tom proposed to me in our kitchen with a message from Walter and some gin – all my favourite things, so he really does listen sometimes!
What was your highlight of the day?
Tom: My highlight was the entire day itself! I enjoyed every minute of it, from arriving on the bikes with my best man and brother to seeing Sophie walk down the aisle to celebrating with all of our friends and family in the evening. If you pushed me and I had to pick one specific highlight itself it would be the moments that people didn’t see. The moments when it was just Soph and I and we could take a breath like walking through the woods having our photos done or straight after the ceremony realising that we were husband and wife.
Sophie: For me it was our first dance, we had ‘Love on Top’ by Beyoncé so it wasn’t a conventional first dance song but the moment everyone came to join us on the dance floor was just amazing! Everyone was so happy and just ready to party with us and it really made me feel loved and appreciative to have so many people I love in one room with me. I also loved the morning getting ready with my bridesmaids, it was special and important to share a moment like that with my best friends and my Mum.
What advice would you give to couples planning their special day?
Our advice is to not worry about the small things, just remember that everyone is there because they love you and want to share your special day with you. If everyone is there for that reason the day will be amazing no matter what! It’s probably easy for us to say as neither of us get too stressed but if you are relaxed you will enjoy the day so much more because you won’t be worrying about every details and you will be able to take everything in! Trust in the wonderful team at The. Pumping House because they really will look after everything!
Also if it is looking like it might be 32 degrees on your wedding day, just invest in some fans in advance!!!
What was on the menu?
What wasn’t?! We had anti-pasti platter starters which as it was such a hot day was perfect, we then had roast lamb or chicken chasseur finished off with Eton mess or lemon torte. The food was absolutely delicious and the team catered for everyone as we had quite a lot of allergies and food intolerances – everyone thought the food was amazing! My Mum also made a pick & mix table and 110 lemon biscuits with personalised icing – not bad for someone who actually doesn’t bake! In the evening we had a Hog Roast as well as an ice cream bike which was where my Dad could be found hanging out all night! Not to forget the gin bar which was gone in about 30 minutes haha!
What was your inspiration for the day?
Our inspiration was really just to keep it relaxed yet emulate the stylish and industrial feel the venue had – we met with the lovely Gemma from Save the Date and we literally nearly hired everything! We found a lot of what we wanted there and then we made some of the other bits ourselves which were all very much in keeping with the venue and our vision: balloons with foliage, copper and wood menu holders and wooden signs with faux foliage.
In terms of colours; as we were getting married in the summer and because of the feel of the building – we mainly went for white and green with hints of blue, grey and copper fittings (lanterns, arches and menu holders).
After we learnt that we could have a Gin Bar at the venue, we thought actually maybe we could incorporate gin into the day somehow so we decided to name our tables after gin bottles (yes we drank a LOT of gin in 2018/19!) Our lovely friend Katy illustrated gin bottles for our table plan, she also had designed our invites so we used the design on a lot of our ‘on the day’ stationery too which made it really personal to us.
We felt scent was such an important part of the day, smell can bring back so many memories so we chose my favourite Jo Malone Candle – Green Tomato Leaf and had these on each table. The fresh scent complimented the aesthetic and to this day people still refer to the candle as ‘our wedding candle’.
The Dream Team…
We had the amazing Henry Lowther as our photographer, just the nicest guy and laughing non-stop all day! We knew as soon as we saw his photos we needed him as our photographer and he truly captured our day even better than we had hoped – Tom wants to hire him to just come everywhere with us now haha!
Henry also helped us find our incredible videographers For All The Days (Jamie and Sarah) again they were jus the best people to work with and captured such a beautiful set of videos for us, they totally work around you and having two people to do it made it so we could capture everything.
My florist was a lovely lady I used to go to school with, Poppy Scout (Hattie). Tom and I are pretty rubbish when it comes to flowers; knowing what they are called, what will be in season etc. so Hattie just took our Pinterest boards and made them a reality. She made me the most amazing floral crown and the boquets and button holes were beautiful. She also did some beautiful foliage for us in the ceremony room on a copper arch as well as in the entrance hall and it really bought our vision to life.
We had the lovely Save the Date who we hired some of our styling accessories from. Gemma was amazing and so accommodating in getting us everything we needed and wanted. We are still swooning over the peacock chairs!
A HUGE part of our day was having our dog, Walter there and we had the awesome Michelle from Hurley’s Wedding Day Dogs to look after him. Michelle came and collected him in the morning to take him for a groom and pamper so we could all relax and get ready. She then came back with him and looked after him throughout the wedding and made him pose for pictures (need some tips on that). She was amazing with hum, we highly recommend contacting her if you want to have your dog there on your day!
We also had a wonderful and delicious breakfast delivered from Fig & Ginger in the morning for my bridal party. It meant we didn’t have to worry about food in the morning and it was all set-up beautifully for when we arrived at The Quarters.
A mention also to Silk Brides which is where I got my dress from as they made my experience something I will never forget and really are wonderful at what they do.
We also had a lot of help from our lovely friends with our day – my Mum made biscuit favours, my Dad helped Tom make the menu holders, about 10 people helped us with the balloons, Katy did the invites and table plan, Sharryn and Emma did mine and the bridal party’s make-up, Morgane did the bridal party’s hair, our family friend Jane made the incredible cake and Christy made the flower crowns for the bridesmaids and the flower collar for Walter.