Rebecca & Adam’s Halloween Themed Wedding Starting at South Shields Town Hall
Writing this blog it feels far more than a year ago when I photographed Rebecca & Adam’s glorious, Halloween themed wedding at the Greyhound Inn in Jarrow. It’s been a hard year and we miss weddings like these. It was going to be my second solo outing for the year. Lisa had more holidays booked and she was gutted she was going to miss a spooky wedding.
I remember meeting Rebecca & Adam before the wedding. They were such a laid back couple with great ideas and wanted me to “do my thing”. They just had one request; No soppy wedding photos. They were honest and explained they weren’t a touchy, feely couple. But I convinced them to at least hold hands, and they agreed. I desperately scoured the internet for loads of special poses. The Greyhound Inn sounded like a great little venue and Rebecca had loads of Halloween plans for their reception there.
South Shields Town Hall
Rebecca & Adam’s wedding was our third at South Shields Town Hall. It was becoming our second home. Good job we love it there. The staff are fantastic and it’s a fabulous looking building. The wedding was a late one, 4 pm for the service, but they would have had it later if they could. In October the sun sets at about 6 pm so I was going to have to be quick if I wanted to use any daylight.
Adam, his brother and Dad arrived nice & early on a very bright autumn afternoon. I got the impression straight away that they were really close and soon guessed that Adam’s brother was the joker in the family. We had a lot of fun before the guests started to arrive. Someone was missing. I’d been looking forward to meeting Sean the Dog. I’d heard loads about him but sadly the decision was made that he’d be happier at home. No doggo fix for me.
Everyone moved inside before Rebecca arrived with her bridesmaids in a beautiful VW Camper van. I was not expecting Rebecca’s fabulous pink hair. Rebecca would have loved to have been married in a black dress, but she compromised and went with black talons, rocking spooky Doc Marten boots and blood-red roses. (Keeping the black dress for later that night.) She certainly stood out from her bridesmaids who were beautiful in their own right. No one was going to outshine Rebecca today.
The Bride with Bubblegum Pink Hair
Queen Vic Casts her Shadow
With the service out of the way and family groups complete on the stairs, everything was going swimmingly. Just a big group on the steps outside. Everyone had resisted jumping on the big red London bus that Rebecca & Adam had laid on for their guests to get to the Greyhound Inn. I can’t remember ever having the last shot for a wedding at South Shields Town Hall before and certainly couldn’t remember the huge shadow from the statue of Queen Victoria ever being a problem. The sun was so low and it was casting a shadow inconveniently straight up the steps. I can remember thinking… That will need some work on photoshop!
With everyone safely on the bus, we pinched a quick shot on the back before it set off for The Greyhound Inn. We had the Town Hall all to ourselves with only the quickly setting sun pushing us along. One of the reasons we love working here is that the staff don’t rush you. Rebecca & Adam were the last wedding of the day but the staff didn’t pressure us at all. Rebecca & Adam even forgot their own rule of no cuddles. I barely needed to dip into my stash of specially researched poses for them.
Halloween at The Greyhound Inn
Rebecca had tried to describe all of the Halloween decorations & props she was planning to me before the wedding. Some that she already had but mostly she was going to get just for the wedding. It all sounded great but I never imagined she would pull it all off. As we arrived at the Greyhound we were greeted by a very slim couple. This pair had waited for a little too long for the reception. I was so gobsmacked that I could think of what to do. Some situations are just too nutty. I just remembered a shot with pumpkins I’d always wanted to try.
The Dark, Gothic & Beautiful
Inside the Greyhound Inn, Rebecca, Adam and the staff had done an amazing job of decorating the reception room. I couldn’t include all of the detail shots from the room without doubling the size of this blog post. As the Greyhound staff presented them with the finished room I tried to get a traditional toast shot. With any other couple, it would be glasses of champagne. Rebecca & Adam went straight to the shots!
During our planning sessions, Rebecca & Adam had wanted to keep family photos to a minimum. My brief was to do just a few family groups at the town hall. Nobody told Rebecca’s mum who frog marched her family out into The Greyhound’s beer garden. We squeezed the last sliver of light out of the day to get mum the photo’s she wanted. At this point, the rest of the family piled out and Rebecca & Adam resigned themselves to the fact that “a few” was going to turn into “a lot”.
Stumbling about in the Dark
The only group we hadn’t yet accomplished was a “Friends Shot”. Getting this photo was hilarious. The sun had set and the beer garden was pitch black. At the time, getting a bunch of drunk 20 somethings on a children’s climbing frame with Halloween props seemed like a good idea. My off-camera flash decided to not work after spending 20mins of testing before the wild bunch came outside. As soon as I got them set up the flash just wasn’t working and I couldn’t figure out why in the pitch dark. So I had to quickly swap to a Speedlite before I lost the groups attention. I had a little bit of fun adding some “Nightmare before Christmas” characters in too.
First Dance at The Greyhound Inn
Rebecca changed into her Black wedding dress for the dark side of the night, just in time for their first dance. This wonderful quiet couple that had been so reserved during their service suddenly started busting moves on the dance floor. Afterwards, they were quickly joined by the skeleton bride who had already started an affair with a bridesmaids boyfriend!
My love of Rebecca & Adam was cemented by the Stone Baked Pizza stall for their wedding breakfast. They made sure I went home with one, they must’ve known I could live on pizza!
I loved my Halloween evening with Rebecca & Adam. It got me totally into the mood for the season despite hating the fact that my kids are too old to dress up and go trick or treating. Lisa & I wish them both all the best in life and hope to see them again soon.