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Ashes Barns Wedding Photography | Saff & Sam
A February Wedding at Ashes Barns
Myself and Saff met in a previous life when I used to work in retail. It wasn’t until I left when we actually started to speak a little more. I was expanding my photography and photographed her, Sam, Pippa (dog) and Pepsi (horse) for a spot of pet photography which soon got pushed by the wayside for more wedding photography. Anyway, following that awesome shoot Sam asked Saff to marry him. So with me pretty much taking a mini engagement shoot for them Saff booked me without hesitation for her Ashes Barns wedding in 3 years time!
With Saff also going through struggles with her health like Cera in the past it soon became more of a friendship between us as she reached out to me many of times whilst Cera was in hospital. A real care for the others around her and even those on the edge like myself is what makes Saff such an awesome person. Sam’s a bit all right too haha. Seriously he’s a true gent and really into their relationship. It’s beautiful to watch them together.
Laughter and Personality Full Photography
I don’t think I’ve ever actually been to a wedding with as much laughter as this. I could barely take a photograph without some cracking a chuckle. Whether it was Saff and Sa, their bridal entourage or even the guests. It was a wedding full of laughter producing oh so magical portraits.
The decor Saff had organised for her Ashes wedding was spectacular. It was a mixture of the farm life she loves meets floral heaven with spectacular flower arrangements from Varnish & Sprigs who I also worked with on Jade and Aaron’s wedding the year before.
On arrival it was a quick dash for the bridsmaids/Koalas into the Ashes Dressing Room before Sam arrived in a very noisy Mustang. From there on the day, as per usual at The Ashes, just flowed so fast and with hot chocolate, Staffordshire oatcake canapés, and a dash of rain it felt very warm and wintery.
Local Pride to Work at The Ashes
With it sat right on my doorstep it really does feel like a proud moment when I get to be a part of an Ashes Barns wedding. For me they’re local wedding heroes pushing this beautiful area I live in to the forefront of the national focus. They also even have my favourite local Emma Bridgewater pottery in the Dressing Room. I love the feeling of pride I feel at this beautiful rural wedding venue.
My style of wedding photography is built on a great relationship with my couples. All of my weddings are different and unique; even those at the same venue like Ashes Barns. Time on your wedding day is really important to me. So if I can help it I don’t really want you to miss a thing on your wedding day and would love you to remember as much as possible. This caring and relaxed approach to my wedding photography is the reason why so many couples recommend me. They always say it feels like a friend is taking their photographs and not a photographer.
Ashes Barns Wedding Slideshow
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The Only Wedding Barn Choice You’ll Need
Making your way down Leek Road in Endon, Stoke-on-Trent you’ll find yourself at the very at first unassuming entrance of the Ashes. Heading along the drive way through this stunning 50 acre estate you won’t quite be able to take it all in. As you near the stone bridge which lifts you up and over the brook you’ll come into vision of The Ashes Barns standing proud. Finally heading past the lake you’ll begin the short climb to this incredible rustic wedding paradise.
This grade II listed historic wedding venue carries quite the story with it. The deeds originally date back to the Elizabethan period. The main Country House dates back to the 16th century whilst the larger of the two barns dates back even further to the 15th century and then the smaller barn came about in the 17th century. Built over 3 decades and now all individually listed by Historic England this rustic stone building collection is a staple of local history.
Following a long habitation by one family, The Williamson’s, for most of the 20th century this historic no wedding venue didn’t see much change for a long time. The last occupant of The Ashes was one Bessie Williamson who lived there until she was 95 enjoying a simpler life by working the land and never modernising the buildings.
In 2006 Ben and Sarah Reeves of Ensarb Ltd purchased the property and started a mammoth restoration project to renovate the Ashes in a way which spoke to it’s historical past whilst also adding in modern amenities. After 2 years of significant restoration The Ashes Barns opened for it’s first wedding in 2008.
Fast forward to present day and The Ashes Barns is now as strong front runner in the local and national wedding community providing excellence in wedding functions for over 10 years. Along their journey they’ve rightly been recognised for their commitment and passion. There biggest claim to fame was winning “Best Wedding Venue” nationally at the Wedding Industry Awards in 2014. They also scooped the West Midlands award that year as well as the year before in 2013. Their scrumptious food has also been recognised by being awarded the Taste of Staffordshire Good Food award for 2010-2013.
To this day The Ashes continues to be a proud family run exclusive barn wedding venue for couples looking to get married in an historic setting with picturesque views to die for.
Like all of the other Ensarb venues The Ashes Barns boasts a No Corkage Charge for you so feel free to bring your favourite tipple and have the expert team serve you following your wedding ceremony.
A Magical Day at The Ashes
A wedding day at The Ashes is like no other. You’ll arrive at 10:30 and be able to access Your Dressing Room straight away. Your florist and venue decorators will also be allowed on site early to start building their creations ready for your big day. As you enjoy a bit of bubbly with your friends you’ll be able to take advantage of the high chairs which sit parallel to a beautiful window beaming in natural light. Not to worry though the Dressing Room is tucked back so none of your guests will get an early glimpse of you. As you and your friends get ready in the changing room in the loft you’ll be able to spy on your guests taking their seats in the West Barn ready for your wedding ceremony.
Once you’re ready you can make your way passed the original mullioned windows being ever so careful that your guests don’t catch a peek of you before walking from under the Juliet Balcony and along the stone flagged floor to the end of the aisle. With exposed oak beams in the rafters and exposed stone walls all around you really will think you’ve died and gone to rustic wedding heaven. The West Barn although not looking too large it can actually fit up to 150 of your nearest and dearest in. Alternatively the adaptable layout can host many different numbers and still bring a great air of atmosphere to your big moment.
After the vows have been read and your first kiss exchanged you can make your way out of The West Barn and enjoy your no corkage reception drinks in the Flagged Courtyard. If you’d rather take in some of those sumptuous Staffordshire countryside views then The Ashes will happily host your drinks on the Country House Lawn. With the Ashes being a wedding venue for all seasons you can even keep cosy inside one of the barns until your wedding breakfast is ready to be served.
When the time comes you’ll then be invited to make your way through the stable doors and into the East Barn to sit for your wedding breakfast. Working alongside Jenkinsons caterers the Ashes delivers quality fresh locally sourced wedding breakfasts which are to die for so no bellies will go empty at your big day!
Barn weddings boast adaptable space and The Ashes is one of the best at it. Rather than have to get up and move into another space following your meal you’ll simply be able to sit put and watch the evening reception merge in ever so gracefully to your day. This keeps a great party atmosphere flowing all day.
When the last song has been sung and you’re ready for bed you and your closest family and friends can retire onsite with ease. The onsite accommodation boasts several different beautiful options. The Country House has 5 double bedrooms to allow your guests to get the full historic wedding experience. If that’s not their cup of tear then they can enjoy a secluded Shepherds Hut or the Coach House. The Wedding Night Suite as per usual with Ensarb is included in the price.
Capturing Memories Amongst Historic Heaven
Being an Ashes Barns wedding photographer is such a pleasant experience. With the expert events team on hand all day the only thing I have to worry about is when to click the shutter to capture those epic joyous moments.
Coupled with the amazing team you also have such a stunningly beautiful historic barn wedding venue which sits at the foothills of The Peak District. This really is rural heaven to photograph in as it has a bit of everything.
On the multiple occasions I’ve photographed at The Ashes I’ve always come away with different photographs as the creativity is endless. The calming pond which sits off of The Country House presents a beautiful secret garden feel whilst as you stand on the front doorstep of The Country House you can take in possibly the best view of the whole picturesque estate. Moving closer to the barns you have beautifully draped festoon lights in the flagged courtyard and the gorgeous outer stone walls, original mullioned windows and stable doors of the barns to use for backdrops within the photographs. Or maybe we have a bit more time and we can make our way down the long driveway and photograph within the wheat fields with the grade II listed buildings as your backdrop upon the hill. The options really are endless at this wedding barn.
Whilst photographing in doors shards of natural light peek through the windows give a very atmospheric vibe to the wedding ceremony portraits I’m able to capture. Sharp shadows and pockets of light can pick out unsuspecting guests which I can make great natural candids of.
Then later on the intimate dance floor doesn’t overwhelm and can get a real party going easily. Set against the backdrop of the rest of The West Barn I’m able to capture some great tones of light beams in the background.
As you can see it’s hard to hide my mind from imagining stunning scenarios for your wedding at this rural barn venue.
Ashes Barns Wedding Photographer
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