'Simon proposed during chilly a walk along the Cornish coastal path by Stepper Point,' says Briony. 'It was the best Christmas present ever!' The couple set about planning a big wedding for September 2020; however, the Covid-19 restrictions meant they moved it to November and cut numbers down to 30 and then 15.
Opting for the rustic-luxe venue of Nancarrow, their planning took another twist days before the wedding. 'With less than a week to go, we had to move the wedding again to a day earlier to avoid the second lockdown,' explains Briony. 'We luckily managed to reorganise everything within a few hours ' the venue and our suppliers were absolute legends!'
Letting the venue's natural dÃ©cor shine through, the couple opted to keep their styling minimal. 'We didn't have a theme or colour scheme as such ' as Nancarrow is so beautiful and rustic, there was no need. We wanted to keep everything as natural as possible; the beautiful flowers and floral displays were in keeping with the season, along with our menu for the wedding breakfast.'
Their wedding ceremony featured one of Briony's favourite moments of the day: when she and Simon read their own vows to each other. 'Although I was nervous at the writing stage, on the day it was really special and I felt like it made our ceremony a lot more personal,' she reminisces.
After the ceremony, the couple were showered with confetti, and celebrated with glasses of fizz with their guests in the beautiful courtyard.
Moving to the Old Mill, the celebrations continued with an 'incredible' wedding breakfast comprising nibbles of crab scone, arancini, and beef and barley doughnuts; starters of agnolotti; mains of lamb saddle, lamb belly, and seasonal vegetables; and dessert of apple tart tatin with cider cream. 'We felt very spoilt, it was the best meal we've ever had!' says Briony. Guests' appetites were also sated with a cheeseboard, truffles and a two-tiered sponge with homemade blackberry jam filling and a white chocolate Italian meringue icing, made from locally sourced seasonal ingredients.
'We all sat on one long table and we stayed there for the whole evening. It was perfect,' she recalls. 'It almost felt like a Christmas dinner with all the family before the pandemic.'
As a lovely surprise for Briony and Simon, their friends and family who weren't able to be there on the day recorded video messages that were played after the speeches: a poignant and touching moment to end their special day.
'Planning a wedding during the Covid-19 pandemic was tough!' says Briony, looking back on the experience and imparting some sage advice. 'We just kept focusing on the most important thing, which was that we were getting married, no matter what. A big party with family and friends can always come later. If your original plans need to change for whatever reason, try your best to embrace it positively and keep going!'