Updated: Sep 11, 2021
JASON & NOI NICHOLSON
Le Petite Chateau, Otterburn, Northumberland.
2nd May 2019
JKL Hair - 07578 355700 - Hair by the amazing Lauren Badminton.
Make up for Bride, Brides Mother in Law and all Bridesmaids by the fabulous Bea Taylor.
Flowers and Flower arrangement by Denise Rafique
Olde Eldon Jewellers - 0191 2618734 - Bride & Groom Wedding Rings.
Master of Ceremonies - Tim Morris from Le Petite Chateau.
FRIDAY - The night before the Wedding Ceremony
As all Wedding Photographers know, we have start times but it is always good to get to the venue extra early, to get any last minute preparations in place. Shooting the Wedding of Jason & Noi at the magnificent purpose built wedding venue, Le Petite Chateau in Otterburn. I was fortunate to arrive and stay the night before the wedding. This gave me a little chance to capture some photographs in the William de Percy Pub adjoining the Wedding Venue on the night before the Wedding. The Bride, Bridesmaids and family members were all there.
A small collection of photographs from the night before the Wedding, with the bride, bridesmaids, Len, Curry Beee and the wonderful Theo, son of the Bride. As an added bonus we were lucky enough also to be celebrating an 88th Birthday with Len, here he is featured in the middle left photograph cutting into his birthday cake.
Saturday - The morning of the Wedding.
After a wonderful nights sleep I was awake early to pop over to the magnificent flat at the end of the building which had been the Bride and Bridesmaids room. Plenty of thought had been put into this spectacular flat so that it was purpose built for Bridal prep. It also had an alternative door that the Bride could use when heading to the honeymoon suite for photos, then on to the Ceremony, with no chance of the Groom being able to see her until the moment she walked down the aisle with her Grandfather. I entered the flat and judging by the empties the girls obviously had a very good evening. The girls were still milling about getting into their fabulous dressing gowns, there was no doubt who was the Bride and Bridesmaids were with their titles emblazoned on the back. Not that I needed any prompting anyway.
The two very talented ladies, Lauren Badminton from JKL Hair & Bea Taylor arrived nice and early, they would be styling hair and applying make-up respectively. While they set up their equipment I thought this would be an ideal time to get some detail photos of the rings, flowers and shoes etc. It is always good to warm the shutter finger up gently.
Saturday - 1 Groom, 2 Best Men & 5 Groomsmen
The Groom with his huge entourage of Best Men and supporting groomsmen were due to arrive at 08.00am. I received a text from the Groom that they would be an hour late, of course they were fashionably late and headed straight to the bar for some nerve settlers. Come on guys, I was hoping to get some photos of the Groom and his Best Men, it is normally quite difficult to do this without a second shooter as they are usually in different houses. But today they are only rooms apart. I managed to get a couple of photos of the lads at the bar and they were definitely a lively lot.
Well the lads exceeded themselves and were changed and ready in about 15 minutes flat. So we got them out in the rear courtyard for a few photos of the Groom and some Best Men and Groomsmen group photographs. I managed to capture the Grooms father, Trevor fixing the buttonhole flowers of his two sons, then it was up to Tim the Master of Ceremonies to fix them properly. Then it was a frantic rush back upstairs to get the Bridal party in their final prep, last minute adjustments and photos of the girls in their beautiful dresses.
Saturday - Bridal Preparation
If the boys didn't disappoint the girls were ready to go one better again. Make up and hair complete and all dressed in their finery they looked absolutely stunning, the girls took a little bit longer than the boys to get ready but to be honest it showed. But the bridal prep isn't all about just getting ready and looking amazing, this is the time for the bride to have some quiet reflection and bask in the anticipation of the day ahead, more importantly it is enjoying a few hours exclusively with her closest friends. We left the bridal accommodation and headed to the honeymoon suite for some lovely photographs of these beautiful girls. We would be joined by Maureen or Nana Mo as she is affectionately known who would help the Bride with any last minute tweaks, also there was the Brides Grandfather, a real gentleman of old school quality who had the honour of giving the Bride away. I ran off about 100 + frames in about half an hour, this is a selection of my favourite shots.
Saturday - The Wedding Ceremony of Jason Nicholson to Noi Jenkinson
Everybody had a few glasses of champagne up in the honeymoon suite, I even managed a little glass myself, it would have been rude to refuse. So while the girls finished off the champagne and last minute prep I headed downstairs to get a few shots of the groom nervously waiting for his bride to arrive. The groom was anxious and nervous and went through a huge range of emotions. The best men and the array of groomsmen looked very relaxed. While I was waiting for the bride to make her entrance I snapped off a few shots of the guests in the stunning room. There was a few tears from the groom but as his bride appeared the tears stopped and they were replaced by a huge smile as he saw the bride for the first time today. The following photographs of the ceremony is quite excessive to what I would normally do, but after talking to the celebrant I asked her if anything was off limits, she said you do what you want and go where you want during the ceremony. Now that was an invitation I couldn't refuse was it, I think I ran about 150 to 200 photos during the ceremony alone. Here is a selection of those photographs.
Saturday - Formal Guest Photographs.
With the beautiful wedding ceremony complete my plan was to take a big group photograph of all the guests from the magnificent balcony outside the Honeymoon Suite, unfortunately it was raining quite heavily so that was a non-starter. I am not a great lover of the family formal photographs, preferring to shoot the day as it happens. But what the Bride & Groom want, the Bride & Groom get, it is their special day after all. We decided to get all the guests in their family groups inside the wedding venue, Lisa and one of the Groomsmen went off and rounded up the family groups. We did the big groups first and whittled them down to the smaller family groups. It all went very well and next thing we knew it was time for the wedding breakfast to start, so we got our timing just about perfect. I managed to slip into the dining room and took some photos of the table set ups before the guests piled in. The table settings were stunning and looking at the menu the Bride and Groom and all their guests were in for a real treat.
Saturday - The Wedding Breakfast
We knew it was time for the Wedding Breakfast when it was announced by the fantastic MC, Tim Morris who made sure the whole day ran like clockwork.
A little bit of history about why it is called a Wedding Breakfast supplied by Tim, everyday is a school day. The name comes from the past when traditionally the wedding ceremony was held after Mass, the whole wedding party would fast before mass, so for everybody this would be their first meal of the day when they break fast.
Captured a few Candids and also the guests in their own family and friends groups. Some funny speeches with reflections of the life of Mr & Mrs Nicholson that caused an array of emotions and expressions to them both. They had two very unusual cakes for the wedding, a strawberry sponge cake and a chocolate brownie tower! I tasted one of the chocolate brownie's and can assure you it was absolutely delicious. More couples should go for the brownie tower wedding cake, it's the future. I had a bite to eat and backed up my photos so far and gave the guests time to finish their meal, nothing worse than getting your photo taken while eating, in my opinion. Once the meal was finished I mingled with the guests, some who had taken the opportunity to go outside in a brief break in the weather. I managed to get a bit time with the Bride & Groom on their own for a few intimate photographs, I had wanted to walk down the amazing wild garden and get some photos there but the place was sodden so had to shelve that idea unfortunately.
Saturday - Evening Wedding Celebration
It had been a great day so far and I was sure the evening reception was looking to be a fun and very lively night. It kicked off slowly and sensibly with the cutting of the cake, followed by the first dance. With the formalities over it then turned into a proper party, the sounds got cranked up and with the alcohol flowing well the dancing and noise was raised several notches. The main wedding party had been going strong all day and did very well to party hard into the small hours, however there was a few casualties with a couple of the younger crew taking a short power nap on the sofas to recharge their batteries. There was several dancing competitions going at the same, this was great for the photos. Finally as the night came to a close there was some battle weary souls who had given in to the sandman and fell asleep right where they were.
The cutting of the gorgeous strawberry sponge cake was first. But the big pile of chocolate brownies edged it for me on the taste.
When Tim from Le Petite Chateau says it's time for the Bride & Groom first dance. It is time for the first dance. Tim ensures the whole day flows well.
Let the dancing begin. A great group of family and friends who just wanted to enjoy themselves.
The dance floor was never empty
Looks like there might be kissing going on here. Moving in. I am having some of this.
And after a long, long day and night. It was night night time, looks like the seats where very comfortable.
This Blog is dedicated to the Groom’s Grandfather, Leonard (Len) Dolby.
Len, more affectionately known as Grandpa Len or Papa Len, he was born in 1931 right between the end of World War 1 and the start of World War 2, to parents Len and Elsie Dolby, above a little Fruit shop in Charlotte Street in North Shields. He was the younger brother to the Late Ron and older brother to sister Patricia.
He attended Spring Gardens Junior School & Ralph Gardner Secondary School. His first job after leaving school was at a butchers in North Shields and he would ride up and down Tanners Bank delivering packages of meat to the Trawlermen, who were berthed at the Quayside.
He did his National Service with the Royal Navy for 2 years. When he returned from National Service he didn't know what he wanted to do, so he joined Tynemouth Fire Brigade in the early 1950's. He hadn't been in the Fire Service long when he saw an advert for the Royal Rhodesian Air Force, he was intrigued so went to London and had an interview which he passed with flying colours. In 1956 Len headed off to Rhodesia to begin a new adventure, as an Airfield Firefighter. While living and working in Rhodesia, Lens two sons, Steve & Clive were born. He stayed in Rhodesia for 8 years, but due to the unrest in the country he returned to the North East and re-joined Tynemouth Fire Brigade.
Len & Maureen with great grandchild Theo. Surrounded by daughters, grandchildren & family.
Len met Maureen Hopkirk (Nana Mo) in 1968 officially announcing they were a couple in 1972. Len married Maureen in 1973. Sadly Lens two sons returned to Rhodesia with their birth Mother in the mid 70's, so he never got the chance to see them as often as he would have liked.
Lens career in the Fire Service went from strength to strength, he was constantly aiming to improve himself. He took every opportunity he could to gain the various qualifications offered to him. He was reguarly promoted over the years;
1968 Leading Fireman
1974 Station Officer
1975 Assistant Divisional Officer
In March 1984 he was offered the position of Divisonal Officer for the North East division which he proudly accepted. Sadly after only 20 months in the position he was forced to retire due to ill health after suffering a severe heart attack.
From left to right in front of the restored Denis Fire Engine: Len Dolby, John Lillford, Alan McLean, John McColl, Dick McQueen.
In his retirement letter, received from the then Chief Fire Officer he stated, "May I take this opportunity to record and express the appreciation of all members of the brigade for the loyal and distuinguished service which you have so willingly given. In my recollection of your service your own particular high standards of gentlemanly conduct and integrity have always impressed and have served as a fine example to both your colleagues and those In your charge."
Speaking recently to one of his colleagues, Hugh Macleod he recalled, "Len was an absolute gent. Good at his job and well-respected by the lads. Pity about his heart attach, he could have gone all the way to the top."
Len was a true gentleman and a stoically loyal man. Family was everything to him and he would always be there for anyone who needed him. He was very level headed and pragmatic , and didn’t let emotions get in the way.
In his retirement Len kept himself busy with his many interests; he joined Arcot Hall golf club and spent many days there dropping his handicap and enjoying the exercise. He was a very passionate gardener and would keep his gardens in pristine condition. Len loved his holidays and international travel and visited such places as South Africa, Egypt, Australia, Abu Dhabi and Dubai, Greek Islands, Yugoslavia (Croatia ), Golfing in Portugal to name a few. During his time in these places he managed to, fish on the Zambezi, Safari in the Kruger National Park, Snorkelled on the Great Barrier Reef, played golf on the Hamilton Islands and attended the Yaz Island F1 Grand Prix in 2009.
A great passion in his life was reading and of course playing Chess. He played Chess every Thursday night with his good friend and neighbour Peter Squibb, they were an intellectual match and the air was often blue as one would beat the other. These epic matches in true Russian masters terminology were entitled Dolbinov v Sqibbinov.
Len was a sponge and enjoyed nothing more than learning new things, he loved wildlife programmes and most documentaries. He LOVED his sport, any sport, he would watch anything from the Olympics, snooker, tennis, golf, football, in fact if it was on he would watch it.
His family was his life:
Wife Maureen who he married in 1973.
His two son's, Steve born 1956 and Clive born 1960 both lads stayed in Rhodesia before moving and settling in South Africa. Sadly both died at a young age, leaving behind young families.
Two step-daughters, Joanne born 1963 and Lisa born in 1966, both living in North Shields and literally 5 minutes from Len and Maureen family home.
His grandchild in South Africa is Storm, along with her husband Hannes they gave Papa Len a great grandchild, Adrian Leonard Esterhuyse. In the UK he has grandchildren Dan, Jason, Stephanie & Karl. Jason and his wife, Noi gave him two great grandchildren, Theo Nicholson & more recently Caleb Nicholson. Stephanie and her partner are due to provide what would have been his latest great grandchild who is due on 7th March 2022. (I will update this after the birth).
Len, I never really got the opportunity to say good-bye properly. We attended our Covid test together and really that is my last vivid memory of you. We have had many great adventures together and a lot of nice memories. We shared the love of a good red wine and good food, we also shared a passion for photography, we both loved a good book and had an exchange on several occasions.
You will be a terrible miss to many, many people. I have said in the past that this is not good-bye. It is until we meet again. As I release this blog I shall toast your wonderful life with a large glass of Malbec.
Rest in Peace Leonard Dolby. 1931 - 2021