From Wedding Guests to Lifelong Partners: Ellie & Chris’ Love Story Unveiled


When Ellie and Chris met at a wedding at Castle Leslie Estate, they instantly fell in love. Keep on reading to find out more on their love story!

How did you both first meet?

We met at Chris’ sister’s wedding in 2018 at Castle Leslie Estate. Myself and my family were invited through Chris’s stepmother, an old family friend of ours. At the time I wasn’t too excited to be going to the wedding. I didn’t know anyone and I honestly didn’t know why I was going, however, the silver lining was meeting Chris!

We were seated together and the wedding breakfast table and that’s where it all started. After trips back and forth to see each other, six months later I ended up moving to Northern Ireland.

Tell us about the proposal at Castle Leslie Estate!

We were together for three years when we went back to the Castle Leslie Estate for our anniversary. We had a picnic by the lake and after we’d finished eating Chris proposed on the jetty by the lake. I had no idea that he was going to propose! It seemed to be a last-minute getaway, but he had it all planned out. 

Tell us all about the planning process. 

The planning process was tricky as we agreed to get married in England, the compromise for me moving to Northern Ireland. There were many a flight to and from Belfast to Gatwick throughout the planning stages. Luckily we had been planning the wedding for two years so this eased the stress and time needed off work. 

Would you like to give a shout-out to any of your suppliers?

We worked with some amazing people and companies that helped us get the wedding we had hoped for. Our venue is called Stanhill Court Hotel in Surrey, a 10-minute drive from Gatwick for all our family and friends coming from Northern Ireland.

We had our ceremony and the reception at the Hotel and it was exactly what I wanted it to be. My make-up was done by a lovely lady called Lucy, and my hair by Claire Field. I chose Lucy as she did my sister’s wedding make-up and was fantastic. I met Claire at a Bridal shoot I did and she managed to step in for me last minute which is unheard of during a summer season, I was so grateful!

Who captured your day?

I had both a photographer and videographer for my wedding and they were both so fun to work with, it was like they were guests on our wedding day which was so lovely, they even got in the Photo Booth and wrote a lovely message in our book.

Our photographer was Paul Placitelli and my videographer was Taurai Films. I originally met the photographer at the venue on a wedding open day, he had a special deal on and we chatted for ages and got on well so just booked him there and then. It wasn’t until my photographer reached out to me to be a part of a bridal shoot that I met Taurai. From working with them both and having so much fun on the bridal shoot I just had to hire Taurai as well, their energy together is just amazing.

What did your bridal party wear?

I wore a design by Allure Bridal from a small bridal shop in West Sussex called Couture and Tiaras. The dress was nothing that I originally thought I would go for but the classic princess cut style with the bow at the back of the dress was unbeatable compared to the other options I liked. As soon as I put the dress on I knew. 

Being my extra self I also got a dress for the evening from Nadine Merabi, as much as I loved my dress I was thankful to be able to dance during the evening without having to hold up the massive train.

What was your favourite part of the day?

One funny memory from my wedding was at the ceremony itself which we had outside in an amphitheatre setting. When I was walking out it started to rain very slightly, but as soon as I got under cover out of nowhere the rain poured on all of my guests while I was covered under the canopy; everyone was laughing and hiding under suit jackets.

I even had to take my two-year-old niece into my arms as she got soaked and was crying, much to Chris’s dismay, but the photos from this are one of a kind. I felt terrible for my guests but luckily for me as soon as the ceremony finished it was sunny again. 

Any advice you can give?

I would advise other brides and grooms to just enjoy the process and not overthink anything because, on the day itself, the finer details most likely won’t matter to you. What made my wedding day was having all of our family and friends together and celebrating. It’s not often that you will have everyone across both families in one room and that is what makes it so special. 

The Dream Team

Venue: Stanhill Court Hotel

Photographer: Paul Placitelli Photography

Videographer: Taurai Films

Wedding Dress: Couture and Tiaras Bridal Shop

Evening Wedding Dress: Nadine Merabi

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