Real Weddings

Maggie Sottero for a countryside wedding at Hooton Pagnell Hall – Jemma & Mark

Alexis Forsyth

An example of country chic at its very best, Jemma and Mark celebrated their big day at Hooton Pagnell Hall, a stunning property close to Doncaster that dates back to the 13th century and has been in the same family for 300 hundred years.

It’s easy to see why bride Jemma fell head over heels for the venue after seeing it for the first time, even shedding tears after their initial show around!

Complementing the natural beauty of the venue, Jemma and Mark picked a Yorkshire-come-countryside theme, with drinks on the lawn, tables named after their favourite local spots, a vibrant aqua green hued colour palette and a beautiful bridal bouquet of peonies and roses. Oh, and Yorkshire puddings on the food menu (we wouldn’t expect anything less!).

Outdoor games, Haribo sweets as favours and a caricaturist all add the fun factor to their summertime celebration, and we simply can’t wait to read all about it! Here’s Jemma with all the day’s highlights.

With images by Terri Pashley Photography


Jemma says

: We got engaged in July 2015 in Italy. We were wandering around the busy streets of Venice looking for a place to eat when we got lost and ended up on a secluded bridge surrounded by beautiful buildings and water. Mark completely surprised me when he got down on one knee, I was so shocked I only realised about an hour later that I didn’t actually say yes!


We tied the knot on 4th August 2018. Mark is a teacher so we wanted to get married in the school holidays so we could take a long honeymoon. We got married in All Saints Church in Hooton Pagnell, Doncaster, followed by a reception at Hooton Pagnell Hall.

Although we were living in Leeds at the time, my family are from Doncaster, so we were pretty set on finding a venue in this area. Hooton Pagnell Hall was a new wedding venue and when we saw it for the first time, we just knew it was the one. Even though the barn we would be using for our reception was essentially an empty space with a long, long way to go, we just had the vision and nothing else compared.

The quaint village church next door was the icing on the cake with its beautiful interior and traditional charm. As we walked away after viewing the venue I actually cried, I felt such a strong connection to the place.


We decided to go for a Yorkshire countryside theme. The drinks reception and canapes were on the lawn overlooking the countryside and our tables were named after Yorkshire beauty spots that were special to us as a couple.

The bridesmaids wore aqua coloured dresses and the groomsmen matching ties, so we teamed this with pale pink and cream flowers with lots of green foliage to fit the countryside theme.


I wore a Maggie Sottero dress, which I purchased from Tickled Pink Bridal, Doncaster. The gown wasn’t usually stocked in that particular store, but another bride-to-be had personally requested it. I happened to visit on the one weekend it was there, and I loved it immediately. I didn’t expect to get a dress which was fitted but I loved it straight away. It was a perfect fit; I just added some spaghetti straps which helped me feel more comfortable.


Mark and his groomsmen all wore a light blue three-piece suit from Slaters in Leeds.


My bridesmaids wore aqua coloured backless dresses from ASOS and the flower girls wore similar coloured Monsoon dresses.


My hair was done by Danielle and Bobbee from Es Paradis, Doncaster.

Chloe Yeatman from Sherburn in Elmet did my makeup along with some of the bridesmaids and family. Alicia Mae Makeup also did the bridesmaid makeup.


As the bridal party were getting ready at the Hall, we didn’t plan to hire any transport but my parents surprised me with a vintage car from Tyson Wedding Cars. The same car also drove to Mark’s hotel to surprise him and the best man with a lift to the church.


Terri Pashley Photography captured our day and she was absolutely amazing, so we couldn’t recommend her highly enough. She puts you at complete ease on the day and her photos are stunning and of the highest quality. She goes above and beyond before, during and after the day, and nothing is too much trouble.


My bouquet consisted of peonies, roses with a wild flower and green foliage theme to suit the barn venue, provided by Tiger Lillies Florist. The bridesmaids carried smaller versions of my bouquet and the flower girls had flower wands to carry down the aisle.

Matching the bouquet, we had a large top table flower display along with table decorations of wildflowers in lace-covered jars, also provided by Tiger Lillies Florist.


I work at Haribo so, of course, the favours had to be Haribo sweets! We went for rings and hearts.


Our cake was simple with a few flowers for decoration. It was made by a friend of the wedding venue and was absolutely delicious!


We went for a Yorkshire themed menu provided by Hazel’s Catering. The main was a roast beef dinner with Yorkshire pudding and we had canapes including mini potatoes with Lea & Perrins sauce. We wanted to keep the food quite simple to make sure everyone would enjoy it.


In the evening we had a band called Hit the Dance Floor and they were amazing. Everyone was up on the dance floor having a great time!

Our main aim was to make sure everyone had fun, so we thought about all the little things. We had lawn games to keep people entertained during the photographs, we made our own photo booth table with a polaroid camera, we hired a caricaturist to entertain people in the evening and we had a basket of flip flops to make sure the ladies could dance the night away even when their heels were getting too much.

Special touches

My cousin Charlotte made the seating plan and the place name stationery, which was a really special touch for us.

Invitations were by Karen Hussey Designs, who we would fully recommend.

If you are keen to do your own table decorations like us, Country Baskets is brilliant.

Thanks to

I would absolutely recommend our wedding venue; it was stunning and the coordinators were brilliant. They thought of everything and made sure everything ran smoothly on the day, keeping us stress free. The barn is beautiful but it’s also a blank canvas so perfect for a couple that want to put their own touch to the venue.

Best bit

My favourite part of the day was being surrounded by everyone I loved and watching them have fun and enjoy our special day as much as we did.


We went to Bali on honeymoon. We stayed in three different places, on the beach in Sanur, in the centre of Ubud and then finally in the mountains on the outskirts of Ubud in an amazing hotel surrounded by the jungle.


My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to make sure you and your partner find time for a few minutes alone together. The day goes so fast and is such a whirlwind, it’s important to take a quiet moment together.

I also found Brides Up North so helpful when looking for inspiration during the planning. It’s great to see the many different styles and themes when reading the real weddings.

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