Blue Bay Events

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A Wedding Weekend Full Of Surprises

In every wedding planner’s career, they should have the opportunity to manage a wedding like that of Scott and Paul’s!

On first meeting this couple, it became very clear, very quickly, that this wedding was going to be a little more unique than others! Especially when during that said meeting, the topics of helicopters, fine dining, surprise changing rooms and barn dance were all covered!

Scott and Paul both had a very clear vision for their dream wedding day…or should we say wedding weekend!

On the first meeting, we supported the couple initially in finding their dream venue, which ended up being Durlston Castle in Swanage. This venue allowed the perfect blank canvas to start creating the master plan which was their dream weekend of events. Due to the very busy work lives of both, they decided early on to hire our ‘Full Wedding Planning Services’ for the whole wedding weekend.

Over the next few months, we spoke weekly with the couple to update on all areas of their Wedding Planning requirements. These requirements covered all areas of supplier sourcing, planning logistics and travel coordination. Not only was this for the wedding itself but also for the pre and post wedding events. Included in the list of items to source were: a helicopter, a Punch and Judy show, a Bucking Bronco, changing rooms, fancy dress boxes, children’s entertainers, vintage crockery, custom made chocolate robots, a piano tuner and many many more!

Thankfully Dorset Wedding suppliers were more than keen to get involved with such a wonderful weekend and we were delighted to work with the following teams: Simply Gourmet Catering, One Thousand Words Photography, Charlotte Trim Floristry, Perfectly Pretty Weddings, The Wedding Crechers, Primo Parties, Cat Mutter Make Up Artist, Natasha Mackenzie Hair, The Canteen Restaurant Swanage, The Lighthouse Cottages, The Great British Deck Chair Company, Bliss Aviation, South Coast Travel, Chococo Chocolate Shop, Abby’s Truly Scrumptious Cakes and many more along the way.

The buzz of excitement in the run up to this weekend was extraordinary! All involved were eagerly anticipating the wedding weekend, and to add to this excitement we were experiencing a very un-British heatwave too!

On the Friday night, guests congregated in the first meeting point, The Canteen in Swanage, for a very relaxed dinner and drinks. Along the course of the planning, the couple had been sending wedding invitation hints to their guests. Another was added to the web of mystery on the Friday night which gave away further details for the weekend ahead. The evening was full of excited speculation for what the couple may have in store for them…not many came close to guessing what really lay ahead!

The Saturday dawned with a beautiful summer heat and the air of anticipation for the day ahead. Scott and Paul had arranged to get ready separately with their respective wedding parties. Breaking tradition, the couple arranged to meet pre-wedding ceremony for some private photographs on Swanage Pier. In the morning sun this was a very special and personal moment for the couple…with the inclusion of a band of pirates for good measure!

The rest of the day flew by in a haze of joy and laughter. The couple got married in The Purbeck House Hotel, followed by photos on Swanage Beach…a wonderful juxtaposition of wedding guests with a backdrop of half-naked semi-burnt English people visiting the beach for the day! As the guests departed the beach for their coach to Durlston Castle, the couple snuck off…unbeknownst to the guests, they were about to make their own special entrance.

Once all the guests were happily enjoying specially arranged cocktails on the terrace of Durlston Castle, the announcement was made for all guests to turn to the sea as the couple would be passing by for a quick hello! Cheers of joy as guests started looking for a boat…until the sound of a helicopter could be heard. Cheers of joy turned to screams of delight as the couple flew past in clear blue skies, truly achieving the entrance they had hoped for!

With a fantastic meal being laid on for them from Simply Gourmet Catering, the afternoon was spent being wined and dined in style. With personal touches such as a specially arranged welcome movie, a special art gallery of the guest children’s art work, table names of the couples favourite divas and huge cartoon sketches of the couple behind the head table, the day continued to offer surprise after surprise. However, the biggest surprise was still awaiting the guests as they were soon to discover.

Following the most incredible cheese boards and personalised coffees, the guests were directed to the Belvedere room. In here, the couple had arranged for further sunset cocktails, speeches, cake cutting and first dance to all take place. The cake itself was a masterpiece, specially designed by Abby to include favourite local areas for the couple and even their favourite records in the record shop window! Whilst the guests were distracted, the team were quickly and quietly transforming the reception space from elegant dining area to barn dance extravaganza! This included hay bales, bunting, full band, Bucking Bronco, ice cream cart and a full change of clothes for all staff into barn dance wear! The team had also set up, unbeknownst to the guests, a full changing room below the Belvedere. Here the guests would find a selection of cowboy shirts in all different sizes awaiting them. The guests had already been asked to provide a pair of jeans each (no questions to be asked) and these were waiting ready for each guest to finish off their look.

On finding out this surprise, the guests sprung into action, changing out of their finery and discovering their inner cowboys and cowgirls…amazing what a bit of fancy dress can do! Accents changed into American drawls and the full spirit of the event was bought into by all. On return to the Galley room the guests were speechless at the transformation and very quickly the dancing began, where they continued until the early hours!

Sunday morning dawned even hotter than the day before. The great clear up began in preparation for the final day of celebrations. The couple had hired the Lighthouse Cottages and the team arrived early as most guests were still asleep. A personal chef had been hired to get breakfast up and running to be served with Mimosas and fresh coffee. As guests surfaced they were greeted with fresh scrambled egg and bacon to enjoy in the garden overlooking the sea.

The garden was arranged to ensure that all guests got to enjoy the party ahead of them. Simply Gourmet Caterers arrived to prepare the most incredible BBQ, garden games were arranged and the Durlston Castle Rangers were hired to take the children on a nature walk across the country park. The sore heads from the day before were nurtured with cool drinks, yummy BBQ and very appreciated Purbeck Ice Cream tubs…in 32 degrees, these were inhaled! To top off the weekend of very personal surprises, we had arranged with the couple for a local Punch and Judy act to come and perform a custom written play personalised to the couple themselves. This one off performance had the audience of guests in tears of hysterics and wrapped up the weekend perfectly!

To say this weekend was special is an understatement. I am honoured to still stay in touch with this amazing pair and their weekend will forever hold a special place in my heart. To receive the follow up thank you email from the couple was the icing on the most unforgettable cake of a weekend!

Hi Polly,

We’ve now had time to reflect on the wedding and take in the completeness awesomeness of the weekend. To say we are delighted with how things worked out would be a huge understatement. We are so grateful for everything you have done for us since we met that first time at Durlston Castle with you in your plaster cast – your help has been amazing and we know we have at times been quite demanding of you!

Your calmness on the day was brilliant and although we hear it was a bit frantic, to arrive back at the Castle to find everyone changed and on the lawn is a minor miracle – your organisation skills at their best! We have also been really impressed by the quality of your suppliers, there is not one person you introduced us to who we are not 100% satisfied with – this has been absolutely invaluable when we have been organising the wedding from outside of the area.

We will let you know when we are next down in Swanage and if you are around it would be great to catch up – in the meantime we have sent a small gift to your office which we hope you can enjoy with a book!

Please let us know how we can recommend your services as we would like to sing your praises!

Our best wishes to you,

Paul and Scott (AKA Bucoones)


Fancy seeing more amazing pictures of the happy couple? Head over to our Gallery Page for a beautiful selection.  Huge thanks to Scott and Paul for letting us share their special day and credit to One Thousand Words for the breathtaking photos