Ballymaloe House is one of those few venues that really is world renowned – as a cookery school, centre of fine cuisine and home to the well-known Allen family. Not as well known, perhaps, is that they also host weddings. It’s not their core business, and so they wouldn’t host many compared to other venues, but they are perfectly set up for a wedding day and easily and expertly catered for the 200+ guests that gathered to help Marie and Pierce celebrate their big day in some wonderful sunshine.
Having ended the day in East Cork, it was actually to the west of Cork city, in the satellite town of Ballincollig, that I started.
Marie and her bridesmaids Carol, Denise and Ciara were in the good hands of Tricia O Sullivan Mobile hairdressing and Glamour! By Dawn / Freelance Make Up Artist for the prep, but more importantly, this was also the location of the most efficient sausage roll production line in the South as the bridesmaids took turns cutting rolls, filling with sausages, supplementing with a sachet of ketchup and wrapping in tinfoil, all ready for delivery to guests at a post ceremony tea and sausage roll station outside the church later on. And, I think its fair to say, that particular endeavour took more time than anyone expected! But I think if you asked 200 guests a couple of hours later, they’d have said it was all worth it!
Sausage rolls aside, everything else ran to schedule as I worked alongside videographer Denis of Captured Occasions to capture all that was going on.
Threatening to steal the show for the day was the wedding car – a beautifully maintained classic Mini that, by the sounds of it, is Marie’s dream car. Borrowed for the day, I’d imagine it was going to be a struggle for Marie to return it! We later made it the focus of a night time shot (where I learned it takes three flashes to light a Mini!).
The ceremony, in what we in Cork call “the new church” in Ballincollig, was under the guidance of Fr. O’Mahony, with traditional Irish music provided by a gathering of very talented friends and after the aforementioned tea and sausage rolls (and a quick set of family photos) we all set off for Ballymaloe, the couple driving themselves in the bride’s dream car!
The brief once there was my ideal one – brief bridal party photos, but mainly capture a sense of what’s going on – and the combination of venue and weather made for some great photos in interesting light. Hat tip to Hazel from Ballymaloe who directed us towards the walled garden and a tulip bed for the quick bridal party photoshoot, and to Leila who kept all the cogs turning as we approached dinner time.
Dinner was in the Ballymaloe Grainstoree, which is a magnificent space, complete with a wonderful photographer-friendly gallery-level that runs around the entire room to give great views from above and it was up there I decided to position myself for Marie and Pierce’s announcement into dinner. Speeches were perfectly judged – I especially liked the special toast to the bride from her brothers, which was a lovely moment, and once dinner was done that night time shot of the couple and the car brought my day – one that I throughly enjoyed – to a close.