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Rachel and Richard’s romantic nuptials

Newstead Abbey, Nottingham

Rachel and Richard – The Proposal

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Photography: Dave Nunn Studios

The couple

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Rachel Pink met Richard Saxton in Nottingham at the leisure club where she used to work. “He saw me playing badminton and came to chat to me as he also plays,” says Rachel. “We started dating, we were virtually inseparable – although he got cold feet as it was all moving too fast, so we had a break that lasted a month. We got back together after going to a Stereophonics concert.”

After the couple had been dating for over a year – and a week after Rachel gave birth to their daughter Hannah – Richard popped the question. “We went out for a meal with both sets of parents and I went upstairs to feed Hannah, as I was told there was a comfy seat in the laundry room!” says the bride. “He carried her up for me and, after I had finished feeding her, he got down on one knee and proposed. It came as a total shock as he always said he didn’t want to get married again.”

Rachel and Richard – The Ceremony

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The ceremony

Richard and Rachel became man and wife at Newstead Abbey in Nottingham. “Rich thought I’d stood him up, even though I’d spoken to him three times that morning and was no more than 10 minutes late!” says Rachel. “I walked down the aisle to a string quartet playing She, which is featured in the film Notting Hill. The ‘aisle’ was the cloisters of the Abbey, lined with bay trees that were dotted with white roses and lit with fairy lights.”

Rachel and Richard – The Bride (with flowergirls)

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The outfits

The bride wore a Mori Lee dress and a full-length veil, both from Pronuptia. “The skirt of the dress was full white tulle, with a detachable train,” says Rachel.

“It was a real fairytale dress. My bracelet was given to me on my hen do by one of my friends, and my ‘something old’ was the engagement ring of my late grandmother.”

The groom wore a black tailcoat with a grey and black pinstriped suit, ivory satin waistcoat and a pink cravat, hired from 1860: Suit Hire by Greenwoods (1860.com).

Rachel was accompanied by five bridesmaids and a pageboy. “My older bridesmaids were my sister and Richard’s sister, and they wore baby pink strapless A-line taffeta dresses from TLC for Brides,” she says. “My younger bridesmaids were my two daughters, aged five and 20 months, and my six-year-old niece.

They wore white satin ankle-length A-line dresses from Giovanna Couture with pink flowered embroidery over the bodice.  My four-year-old nephew was my pageboy and wore a miniature version of Richard’s suit.”

Rachel and Richard – The Bride

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The flowers

The bride carried a beautiful ‘teardrop’ bouquet created by Richard’s mum. “It had white roses, white lisianthus and white freesias,” says Rachel. “The girls had white freesias and daisies in their posies, and my older bridesmaids had pink roses.”

Rachel and Richard – The Venue

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The reception

The couple continued with their celebrations in the function rooms at Newstead. “There was one main room where we ate and danced, one small room with the bar, and a room where the buffet was served. We also used this room for children’s entertainment during the speeches,” says Rachel. “During the meal, we had a quiz about the lives of Rich and I on each table to stimulate conversation.  Some questions family would know; other questions friends would know.  This worked really well and some of the answers we had read out were hilarious!”

Rachel and Richard – Wedding Breakfast

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Rachel and Richard asked guests to send a passport-sized photo (to use for the table plan), when replying to the R.S.V.P.

Rachel and Richard – Wedding Cake

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The wedding cake

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Rachel and Richard’s wedding cake was a chocolate torte with a thin sponge layer in between, made by Taeke at Chocolate Art. “It was surrounded by thick white chocolate and strawberries,” says the bride.