Now before I get started on the venue (and yes, it is one very cool venue indeed) can we please just take a brief moment here to first of all consider the groom…
…oh my, what an awesome groom.
On my arrival at the chapel I found Mr Mackay busy inside placing jars of pretty flowers, and laying out the stationery on seats in the sweetest of ways.
It’s hard to describe what it was that was so endearing about this scenario exactly, but this fella was going to stop at nothing to make his day perfect – exactly as he’d been instructed, but with all the genuine want to get it right for his bride, Rosie – and these pictures capture that moment so perfectly.
OK, back to the venue…
The Samuel Worth Chapel at Sheffield General Cemetery is a Grade II listed building that dates back to 1836, and has recently undergone a whole world of restoration. It has played host to ooooh hundreds of funerals and services in it’s almost 200 year old history; but up until 12th August 2017, it had never seen a wedding inside it’s walls.
What a remarkable thing! Rosie and Ross were about to become the first couple in the history of their beloved home town, Sheffield, to celebrate their marriage inside the infamous walls of this historic central city monument.
It was such an honour for me too, to be involved in this special day, and even more so to be joined by members of the Sheffield General Cemetery Trust who had turned up to bear witness to this notable occasion.
Now, for the next moment of consideration: the entrance of the bride. I love this bit!
The arrival of the bride and her walk down the aisle is always one of my favourite moments in any wedding ceremony, and Rosie’s entrance was no exception. Ross had asked to face the wall until the very last moment. I was to give him the nod and let him know when his gorgeous fiance was finally upon him…
…Ahhh, the joy and emotion when he turns around and their eyes finally lock!
The ceremony began with the tale of Rosie’s and Ross’s first meeting, and how they have come to be united even stronger now today. It was a story of shared love for their historic home town only outweighed by a greater love for one another… but with a fair few laughs and adventures along the way to make us all giggle with the notion of their incredible friendship.
Rosie and Ross invited their friends and family to join in too on the day. Rosie’s sister, Ellie, gave a reading she had penned herself, before good friend Paul stood up to share ‘The Lovely Dinosaur’ with a Sheffield twist.
After this Rosie’s Dad, Tony, gave an informative talk on ‘Transportation Issues’ with the assistance of our in-house oompah band Grumpah, who gave a sound track of Love and Marriage to accompany the theme. It was as much a surprise to the couple as it was to everyone else in the congregation too!
Rosie and Ross had opted to write their own marriage vows and had kept them a secret from each other until the day itself. It was a really beautiful moment to hear them be read as both bride and groom had created something so meaningful, personal and poetic to share with the other.
Earlier in the day guests had been greeted at the chapel by a close friend called Chris, who offered friends and family an opportunity to ‘warm’ the wedding rings with their kind thoughts and good wishes for the happy couple before entering the service.
Guests each took a moment to hold the wedding rings in their hands and impart a wish or blessing upon them. During the ceremony, we asked Chris to bring forward the wedding rings in the knowledge that they were now saturated with the love and positive energy of everyone in the room who would witness Rosie and Ross place them onto each other’s fingers.
…and of course, then came the finish.
The announcement of husband and wife, perfectly sealed with a kiss…
… and a funky little dance for good measure!
“When we started planning our wedding [in the restored chapel at Sheffield General Cemetery], we knew that it was never
going to be straightforward. A friend suggested we use a celebrant for the ceremony, after she said it was the best money she ever spent on her wedding day!
When we saw your website and met you, there was never any doubt that we had made the best decision in having you to be our celebrant… We met you for half an hour (in a service station on the M25) and it was like you already knew us! When you sent the draft of the script, I didn’t even remember saying those things to you but what you’d created was so personal and so VERY us!
The ceremony ran totally smooth – even when an uninvited dog crashed the service! As we walked out of the chapel, all our friends commented on how different the ceremony had been to others, and more importantly, how much it was totally us.
Our day was filled with laughter and dancing; everything we’d dreamed of. Thank you so much for being such a crucial part of it. I would and will recommend you to anyone that will listen…”
Rosie and Ross
A big congratulations to Rosie and Ross and a huge thank you to them both for sharing their story, and for adding to the ongoing legacy of the Samuel Worth Chapel in Sheffield. You go guys! *High five, fist pump* etc.
All photographs are by CJRodgers Photography