Pure Happiness: Chelsea + Stuart at Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club

Fairytales do come true at Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club

Chelsea and Stuart blew us away with with their heartwarming nuptials at the Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club, but it was the giddy smiles and eyes full of love that truly captured our hearts. The two said their I do’s in a sunny outdoor ceremony followed by a must-see photoshoot around the gorgeous grounds and gardens, and partied the night away out on the dance floor. With a breathtaking setting for their ceremony and reception, the pair could not have chosen a more dreamy location to start their happily ever after.

Don’t miss Chelsea’s gorgeous lace wedding gown and the couple’s spectacular photos of the day captured by Debbie Sanderson Photography.

The Beginning

“We met when I worked in the local village pub, I had known Stuart for a while, as he had visited here on several occasions. We were both friends with different circumstances. A couple of years later we started to get to know each other, enjoyed each others company and wanted to see where this took us, now 4 years on we have a strong relationship, beautiful home, two children I can honestly say I would call my own and our doggy.”

“The first date we decided on the cinema, Stuart had said he would like to take me to dinner prior to the cinema, so I got all glammed up to realise when we arrived the film started earlier than expected. So what I thought was going to be a nice romantic first dinner date, ended up being a quick visit to Macdonald’s and onto the cinema! (Now that is a way to a woman’s heart!) it obviously worked as I agreed to a second date.”

The Proposal

“Stuart proposed to me whilst we were on holiday in the Dominican Republic, we were there for two weeks, on the 7th day he had planned a day full of surprises. Started off by us having our own private cabana with infinity pool and butler. (It really was amazing). We enjoyed the whole day here, that evening we had planned to meet friends for dinner that we had met. Stuart asked me to wear something dressy. When we arrived downstairs I was led to a candlelit dinner on the beach (I still thought nothing of this, other than him treating us, as we had both had quite a hard 8 months), after our main meal Stuart stood up, walked round to my chair and got down on one knee, inside was the most beautiful ring! I absolutely sobbed, couldn’t let him go (to the point that he struggled to get up off the floor after). I was in absolute shock, couldn’t stop looking at the ring and couldn’t quite believe what had just happened. All along our friends knew as for when we left they were waiting at the bar with champagne to celebrate, it was all so special!”

“He really did good, I was so shocked he managed to keep such a big secret from me.”

The Dress

“Lace and Lavish Satin – A lace, illusion neckline, with chic off the shoulder, sweetheart neckline, figure-flattering fit and flare silhouette. Sheer lace neckline continues onto the back of the dress, romantic illusion with lace through it all the way down the dress into a stunning train. I added a belt to this to give some extra elegance to the centre of the dress and I liked to the long bow effect once done up at the back.”

“Finding the dress was honestly a magical experience. I had my heart set on a dress from a different designer and shop, I continued to look online as I felt something was just not right. I then found a dress that was stocked at Fross, again I was open to options so tried on several whilst there. When I put ‘my dress’ on I knew this was the one, the way I looked, how it felt, it was everything I ever imagined. I was able to see a 360 view of the dress on, at this point I began to cry. (I really didn’t think I would, however, my mum had said when you know, you know) she was definitely right there. I couldn’t stop looking at it and walking around the shop, I was sold and didn’t want to take it off. I spent months looking at the dress in pictures counting down the months until I could wear it, it made me feel so special.”

The Accessories

“I choose a jewelled slide for my hair to compliment my updo and to add a bit of bling, and sophistication – I brought this from laceandfavour.com. I opted for a mid-length ivory single-layered veil, as I didn’t want to hide away the detail on the back of my dress, however still wanted to look traditional. This also came from Fross wedding collections, same as dress.”

“As I went for the romantic, sophisticated lace look with my dress, the added colour/bling came from my accessories. I struggled to find shoes I loved for a while until I found some beautiful ivory satin open toe shoes with diamonte embellishment across the front, they were perfect and so comfortable.”

The Ceremony

“I felt myself get very nervous, butterflies in my tummy- my dad actually said to me you are shaking.”

“I was ready to marry the man of my dreams, he looked so handsome and happy, I knew I was in safe hands.  The moment I reached him and he held my hand I knew everything was going to be ok. He just smiled at me the whole walk down, I couldn’t wait until I got to him.”

“Then walking back down the aisle with all our friends and family surrounding us and throwing confetti over us as we passed them, we were beaming with pure happiness and emotion.”

Memorable Moments

“There are so many memorable moments, too many to choose – so just a few would be”

“The moment we saw each other for the first time at the aisle, best feeling in the world. The day was finally here that we had been waiting so long for, time to take it all in and say our vows to one another. When we met at the end – Stuart took my hand a squeezed it (a sign of nerves, reassurance and togetherness).”

“Secret garden photos – our photographer showing us a secret garden in the grounds of Ashdown Park to take some private shots in the beautiful combination of flowers and colours. Stuart being his normal joker self, whispering into my ear to get what I can now say some of the most beautiful, natural shots of us both!”

“First dance – the first moment we danced together as husband and wife, with all our friends and family watching, then everybody filling the dance floor and joining in. Seeing my mum dance with Stuart and me with my dad – the whole room was just full of so much love and happiness.”

Bridal Advice

“Take in every moment, enjoy time talking to family and friends however give yourself time to soak everything up and enjoy yourself. Once the evening came, I spent most of the evening on the dance floor letting my hair down, it was such a relief that all the planning had come together and been everything we had ever imagined and more.”

“Spread the cost, don’t try and do everything at once. It helps to feel lighter on the pocket and give yourself enough time to look around for the best deals.”

Supplier Information

Ally Vogl

Ally is the Content and Social Media Exec here at WeddingDates HQ. Beyond being obsessed with all things weddings, she loves a good cup of coffee and splurging on beauty products.

WeddingDates Contributors
Submit a Real Wedding

Are you a bride, groom or photographer who wants to share a unique wedding with our readers?

Learn More