Seven Brides for Seven Lovers!

So far this year, we’ve written a blog post for each wedding that we’ve been involved with, and it’s something I’ve enjoyed doing, and the couples seem to have liked it too.

This came to a sudden stop in mid May as my wife and business partner in White Taxi Weddings, Jules, became very poorly and spent five weeks in hospital, during which time our lives were in turmoil! Thankfully she’s home now and recuperating, but it was a very difficult time.

The wedding bookings that we already had, went ahead as planned, and I’m fairly confident in saying that none of our couples would have been aware that anything was amiss, with one exception which I’ll mention in due course.

To make amends to these couples. I’m covering each of them in this post, and it will give me the opportunity to relive them from being in a better space.

It’s interesting to see them as a group of weddings, as it highlights the diversity we experience, yet almost take for granted. The venues involved included Churches,  a Register Office, a former Farm, a Castle, a grand Hall, and an Abbey.

We were hired single journeys for just transporting the Bridesmaids in a couple of instances, up to taking the Bride and her entourage to the ceremony venue and then the married couple on to their reception.

The areas covered were from near Warwick on once side, to t’other side of Mansfield.

Included in this collection was our first Bride in a wheelchair who was able to take advantage of Betty’s inbuilt wheelchair friendliness!

And one Bride, who quite rightly will stay anonymous, kept her nerves at bay with frequent swigs from her hip flask!

Gemma & George were the first lovely couple and we were hired to take the Bridesmaids only to Colwick Hall. We did wait there until Gemma arrived so that she could have photos with Betty, and she and her Bridesmaids looked fabulous, and the sun shone!

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This was followed by the wedding of the lovely Emma & Matt, in Stoneleigh Church, Warwickshire. We took the Bridesmaids first and then the Bride and her Father, and then brought the Bridesmaids back to the hotel and then the married couple.

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We were back on more local territory for the next wedding, of the lovely Jo & Aleister. who got married at Amalfi White, Melbourne. Our involvement was taking the Bride, her Mother, and her young Bridesmaids/Flower Girls to the venue only. The young girls loved travelling in Betty and said they felt like Royalty!

The wedding was on the 31st May, which was our anniversary date, and I mentioned this to Jo who quite naturally asked if we were doing anything to celebrate, and I mentioned that we were unable to go out as Jules was in hospital. Jo was very understanding and passed on her good wishes. Hospital visiting times meant I had to go straight from the wedding to visit Jules and parked Betty in all her wedding glory in the car park, and I stood out like a sore thumb on the ward in my ‘uniform’!

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Another Church wedding followed for the wedding of the lovely Steve and Maria. We collected the Bridal party from Lumb Farm, Ripley and took them to the Church in Rainworth, and then the married couple back to Lumb Farm. The journey time back was over 30 minutes and I noticed that other guests’ cars were following us, rather than overtaking Betty who doesn’t really do speed!. I mentioned this to Maria, who is Portuguese, and she said it’s the tradition in Portugal that no car overtakes the Bride!

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The geographical tour continued as we were back in Derby to collect the Bridal Party for the  wedding of the lovely Cat & Chris and take them to Elvaston Castle, which is now owned by the local authority and well past its glory days. They’ve created quite a special place for the ceremony to take place in though,and the grounds are fabulous, with a secret garden which in this instance had beautifully decorated Tipis for their reception.

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We’ve promoted Betty as wheelchair friendly for quite some time and Shanna-Leigh was our first Bride to take advantage of this for her wedding to Simon. The lovely couple were marrying at Royal Oak House, Derby, and we were taking the Bride, her Mother, and Sister. Shanna-Leigh is used to getting in an out of Taxis in her wheelchair, so that made the whole process very easy.

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The final wedding in this period was of the lovely Charlotte & Bradley, who got married at Calke Abbey, again near Melbourne, which is now a National Trust property. Weddings are held in the old riding stables which provide a blank canvas for each couple to create their own space and style.

We were originally hired to take the Bride and her Bridesmaids to the Abbey, but we were gazumped when a relative bought an open top Bentley, and offered it to the couple for their transport. We were still involved as we took the Bridesmaids and Mother of the Bride instead. The Bentley was a fabulous car but it turned out to be a two door 2+2, with very little room in the backseat for the Bride in her gorgeous dress. I think everyone ended up happy on the day though, which is the main thing!

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One thing which was constant throughout this time was the weather, which is not something you can normally say in a British summer! When you consider the beautiful places we get to visit and the lovely couples who hire hire us, it’s no wonder we love our job!

For more information about us and our services, please visit us here

All the lovely people…

… where do they all come from? Asked The Beatles. Well, the East Midlands it seems, as our couples, almost without exception, have been the loveliest of people, which makes what we do feel like anything but work! And our latest couple, Christina & Ricky are no exception, as they were genuinely lovely and it was a real delight being a part of their day.

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We were first contacted by Christina in 2016, as she’d decided she wanted a London Taxi as her wedding transport, and then she set out to find one. As Betty is the only white London Taxi wedding car in the area, she naturally discovered us, even though at that time we’d only been in existence a few months! Because we offer the option to take Betty to the couples for them to see her, we got to meet Christina and future hubby Ricky at their home.  They obviously liked Betty and booked her there and then for their wedding at one of our favourite wedding venues, the stunning Hazel Gap Barn.

Their wedding date was the 5th of May 2018, which coincidentally was one of my BIG birthday dates, although I didn’t tell them that until after the wedding, as the day was all about them and quite rightly. Because of that connection though, this wedding on this date had been at the back of my mind ever since the booking date, and I couldn’t wait to share my big day with them!

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The details of the venues changed slightly during the interim period, but we were hired to take the Bridal party from their new accommodation, a lovely lakeside lodge, to Hazel Gap Barn in time for the ceremony.

 

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They were blessed by the weather, as it was warm and sunny, and after some photos by the lake at the Lodge, we took the Bridesmaids, Flower Girl, and Mother of the Bride to the venue and they all looked gorgeous in their dresses.

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Next it was the turn of the beautiful Bride and her very friendly Father, and it would be more difficult to find a more relaxed and unstressed Bride than Christina, who took the whole thing in her stride!

We always try to please and do our bit to make the couple’s day special, but it’s very satisfying when you get positive feedback from them. This particular review from Christina has us almost blushing!

“Outstanding service from the beginning until the end!! My husband and I got married on 5th May 2018 and we used Betty to transport myself and my bridal party from our accommodation to our wedding venue. Ever since our first encounter with Andy and Betty we felt reassured and completely looked after. Out of all of the wedding suppliers we used, Andy was the most genuine and kindest supplier and provided first class service from the booking procedure right up until taking us on our big day and he even sent us a few photos after. Andy thought of all the fine details to ensure we were comfortable and Betty was dressed with beautiful flowers and ribbons. I would highly recommend this service to anybody. It wasn’t just a mode of transport but it was a truly enjoyable experience and we wish Andy and Betty every success in the future. Thank you to white taxi weddings for making our day even more special.”

So in the end, everyone was happy which doesn’t get any better, does it?

For more information about us and our services, please visit our website HERE

Have Car Will Travel!

For our most recent wedding, we traveled out of our normal East Midlands comfort zone and went within sniffing distance of Birmingham! Not that this was a problem for Betty as she spent her first 15 years doing what she does best in London.

The wedding of the lovely Georgia and Danny took place in the Sutton Coldfield area, and with the Bride being collected from Little Aston, and taken to nearby Four Oaks, it was a pleasant mix of rural, and leafy suburbs.

As it was another Spring wedding, the weather had to poke its nose in and with rain forecast for most of the day, I made sure the umbrellas and car cleaning kit were on board.  Betty will always leave home in tip top condition, but after an hour’s traveling in poor weather, she always needs at least a good rub down on arrival.

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Once again we were to take the Bridesmaids and Mother of the Bride first and then return for the Bride and her Father.

Fortunately, by the time of the first journey, the rain was little more than a drizzle, although the umbrellas were used to make sure the fabulous dresses of the Bridesmaids were protected.

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The ceremony was at All Saints Church, Four Oaks, which has an interesting drop off point right on a busy crossroads and with just a small space by the war memorial to pull in to. Opening the driver’s door into traffic was challenging, but the Vicar confirmed I was doing the right thing!

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And then it was the turn of Georgia and her Father, and a more relaxed Bride so close to a wedding you’d be hard put to find. As with her Bridesmaids, she looked fabulous and by this time it was dry enough not to need the umbrellas for her short walk to the Church door.

At the rear of the Church is the Church Centre, which operates as a community centre. I drove around to park there until after the ceremony just as a children’s martial arts class was kicking out. The car park, which was already full of wedding guests’ cars, had to deal with a sudden rush of luxury 4 x 4s and sleek limos, as the little darlings were collected and unsurprisingly, gridlock ensued! However, it was all very civilised and no horns were leant on or voices raised!

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Fortunately, they’d dispersed in time for me to get Betty back in place by the war memorial before the newly married couple came out for their photos, and the rain was so light that nobody was bothered by it. Betty had had another wipe down during the ceremony and was ready for the onward journey.

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The reception was held at ‘Alrewas Hayes Exclusive Countryside Venue’ and was on the way back home for Betty.

Georgia and new hubby Danny, were very friendly and chatty and had a great time playing their music and having some bubbly from a very glittery bottle. A few guests overtook us on the dual carriageway, as Betty doesn’t do speed, and this time horns were honked and quick photos of the couple taken through the windows!

It was our first wedding at this venue but it looked great with a Country House entrance which leads through to a huge permanent marquee at the rear. No doubt they all had a great time and partied hard! It was a real pleasure for us to play our part in their special day!

For more information about White Taxi Weddings and our services, please check us out HERE.

 

 

 

 

Spring Weddings, and Bonkers Weather!

“Spring is sprung the grass is ris, I wonder where the birdies is!”

Well, the birds are arriving now and we know Spring is here because of the extremely fluctuating weather typical of this season. It’s that time of year where on the same day you can see some people in shorts and flip-flops and others well wrapped up against the cold, and probably both getting it right!

Our two most recent couples experienced vastly different weather conditions for their respective weddings which were just over a week apart.

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The first couple, the lovely Beth & Sam, caught the wrong end of the weather spectrum as on the day of their wedding at Shottle Hall, it was very cold and with a howling wind. However, even this was a lot better than the previous week when we did the dummy run to check out the route, as on that day it snowed and the road was even flooded in parts!

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We were hired to take the Bridesmaids, who looked wonderful in Rose Gold, and then return for Beth and her Mother. We were due to stay until after the ceremony so the couple could have photos with Betty. The howling wind and freezing temperature did their worst as the couple and guests emerged for the group photos and after probably half an hour of their suffering, Helen, the Mother of the Bride came to tell me that it was OK for me to leave as the couple had had enough and were frozen to the bone and needed to get inside to thaw out! I can’t say I blame them!

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Compare and contrast their experience with what happened just a few days later. For the week after Beth & Sam’s wedding, we were getting the year’s first appearance of “The UK will be hotter than…” This time the sad loser was Greece, as our swiftly arriving heatwave would put the Hellenic Republic’s acclaimed climate in its place. And so it turned out, and white legs were everywhere and BBQ smoke was in the air, as we embraced the long overdue sunshine!

Cue the wedding of the lovely Kat & John. The very high temperatures of the midweek had eased a bit leaving ideal wedding day conditions, as it was still very warm, dry and with no wind! Whatever else happened on their day, they’d really hit the weather jackpot!

They were married at St Francis of Assisi Church in their and our own home town of Long Eaton, which was to be followed by their reception at Loughborough Grammar School.

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Again we were to take the Bridesmaids first, and they too looked wonderful with a very retro look, and Betty was wearing purple ribbons to match their dresses. We then returned to take Kat & her Father, and Long Eaton’s notorious Saturday gridlock problems didn’t quite catch us out!

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One unusual aspect of this wedding on our doorstep, was that due to them having a small reception at the Church after the ceremony and before moving on to the School, I was able to return home for a while after dropping them off, which was a first!

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This was our first wedding of the year where the air conditioning was needed and the heater wasn’t on full blast like just over a week earlier!

Both of our couples were delightful, both Brides looked amazing in their dresses, and both days were very enjoyable for us. The weather did what it did, but we’re unlikely to see such contrasting weather again in two weddings so close together.

Although, this is the UK…

For more information about us and our services, check us out at www.whitetaxiweddings.com

 

Four Weddings and a Few Miles!

Hugh Grant didn’t actually turn up, but the important people did – our lovely couples –  for the four weddings we’ve just done in a week. It’s notable for us as we’d never had four weddings so close together, and we were determined from the outset that each one would get our normal level of service and involvement. Hopefully that happened!

Our first couple, Lucie & Matt, were married on Saturday 31st March at Royal Oak House, Derby, with the pick up at Hilton, just outside Derby. Betty was dressed in red ribbons and our role was to take Lucie, her Dad, the Maid of Honour, and two young Bridesmaids to the venue and then leave, as their reception was just a short walk away. In cases like these we don’t get to meet the Groom, but it was a real pleasure to meet the five we were responsible for!

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Lucie was kind enough to send us this review afterwards, on behalf of herself and Matt:

“Absolutely stunning and different wedding car! Andy was so helpful and couldn’t help enough. Very highly recommended thanks Andy for making our day that bit more special and of course Betty.” Lucie & Matt

Next was the wedding of Paula & James, who were married at Leicester Town Hall on Wednesday 4th April, with their reception afterwards at the Belmont Hotel, leicester, and this time we were to wait and take the couple on to the reception.

On the drive down to Leicester, the weather was awful with some very heavy Spring showers. We always carry umbrellas, but thankfully they weren’t needed as the weather brightened just as I got to the Bride’s house. Betty looked grand with silver and white personalised ribbons, and we took Paula and her Bridesmaid to the venue.

I managed to give Betty a good clean during the ceremony, so she looked presentable for the photos, and again the weather was kind to the couple as they came out!

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Once more we’ve had a wonderful review from the Bride:

“What can I say? Absolutely outstanding service. Beautiful car. And Andy is the most amazing gentleman I’ve met. He went above and beyond for me and made me feel like a very special bride. Thank you so much. I was honoured. X”

Friday 6th April, was the date for Christina and Sam. This was a wedding close to home in terms of the pick up as it was just over a mile from us. The ceremony was at the magnificent St Barnabas Cathedral, Nottingham, with the reception afterwards at The Walled Garden, Beeston.

Betty was dressed in white ribbons and we were hired to take Christina and her parents to the Cathedral, and then the Bride & Groom on to the reception. If Dad had any Father of the Bride nerves, he wasn’t showing it!

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One oddity about The Walled Garden, was that unlike on the day when I did the dummy run to check out the route and venues, a barrier was put in place to prevent any vehicles getting access. The couple had to walk the last bit to the venue and of course the photographer wasn’t able to get any shots of Betty pulling up with the Bride & Groom!

Our final wedding of this wonderful week, involved Rebecca & Mark. With a pick up in Newark on Trent, we had a fair distance to travel, and it was with some foreboding that it was raining quite hard when I left. Again the gods were on the couple’s side as it was dry and very pleasant when I got to Newark, after giving Betty another clean en route!

It was an ivory day for ribbons and this time were we accompanied by a Black London Taxi from Blackmore Commercials, who have some great old London Buses too. Between us, we took nine people to the ceremony and reception at The Nottingham Golf & Country Club, Cotgrave, with Betty carrying the Bride and her parents.

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Again, we’ve been sent a lovely review by the happy couple:

“Being a London girl living in Nottinghamshire, there was only one mode of transport that I wanted to travel in to my big day! Along came Betty and I knew she was perfect for the occasion! Andy you were just as fabulous, doing a trial run the week before to ensure you knew the route and taking so many lovely photos that we can look back on. To make our wedding day even more special, on the way to the venue, Andy explained Betty’s history and I could not believe it when he told us that she came from my home town – Chingford! We couldn’t believe it! Some things are just meant to be! Highly recommend Andy and cannot fault the services he provided. Thank you so much. Mr and Mrs Buckley”

So during the course of the week, we traveled a fair few miles – 231 of them which is a lot for weddings as most are fairly local. But more importantly, we got to meet some very lovely people, and four beautiful Brides. And I’m pleased to say that each wedding was still very special to us!

And Hugh Grant wasn’t missed one bit!

For more information about our services, please visit www.whitetaxiweddings.com

 

Spring is in the Air!

Yesterday, was the first Wedding since last Autumn where I didn’t have to wear a jacket! It wasn’t particularly warm, but the bitterly cold, snowy weather has gone (for now) and it felt a little more appropriate weather for a wedding.

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I’m always amazed that whatever the weather, most Brides wear their dresses without covering up, usually leaving arms and shoulders exposed, so it’s the least I can do to be there in my normal shirtsleeves and waistcoat wherever possible, but I do have my limits!

It was time for the marriage of Paula and Steve, and a lovely couple they were. The ceremony was at Glenfield Register Office, Leicester, and then on to the reception back in the Bride’s home village of Newbold Vernon.

After chatting to them during the day, they weren’t initially going to have hired transport as the wedding was low key for family and a few friends, but the Groom Steve, saw one of our adverts on Facebook and decided that he wanted Betty as she fitted in with the relaxed style of their day. Also she could carry the four people who needed to be taken to the ceremony venue quite easily, especially as the Mother of the Bride has limited mobility and Betty is well equipped to deal with this, having either a step or a ramp for access, and plenty of grab handles inside the cab.

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So, we arrived at the Bride’s house in Newbold Vernon, early as usual, and when everyone was ready, we got the Bride, her parents, and her Sister who was her chief Bridesmaid, aboard and off we set. We got to the Register Office just a couple of minutes early, and waited briefly for the Groom to disappear from doing his official bit, and we then got the Bridal party inside.

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It wasn’t long before they were back outside as a newly married couple, and plenty of photos were taken before the Bride and Groom were ready to be taken on to The Swan Inn for their reception.

That was the end of our input for the day, but after a meal they were going to have a karaoke evening and were ready to really enjoy themselves.

We thoroughly enjoyed playing a part in their special day, and we wish them the very best for their future together!

For more information about our services, please visit www.whitetaxiweddings.com

 

A Winter Wedding!

As you’d imagine, most weddings in the UK take place during Spring, Summer & Autumn, with a steady trickle keeping us going through the Winter months. You have to be pretty hardy and an eternal optimist to schedule a Winter wedding, given that most Brides and Bridesmaids will still want their fairy tale dresses, and want to show them off rather than cover them up with coats!

In our short time in business we’ve been hired on quite a few cold Winter days, and fortunately Betty’s heater is a good one! Last week though, was the first time we’ve been involved with a wedding in the snow! And it was freezing cold too, thanks to the Beast from the East!

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We were hired to take the Mother of the Bride and Bridesmaids to the venue only, and in the days leading up to the wedding day, a rather nervous MOB was in frequent contact asking how Betty was in the snow (we didn’t know), and should we leave earlier than planned etc. The pick up address was on a road which was still covered in snow and ice, and as it was not too far away, I drove up there to see for myself and it was definitely very slippery.

I didn’t go up in Betty as she’s been valeted and prepared for the big day, so it was still going to be guess work as to how she would cope in those conditions. I felt pretty confident she would be ok though.

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Come the wedding day and conditions hadn’t worsened, which according to the forecast had been a possibility! Betty was duly dressed in her ribbons, which being pink, certainly added a touch of colour to the wintry scene.

I arrived a bit early at the pick up road, and had the opportunity to test Betty stopping and starting in the icy snow. I decided that I’d find a bit of clear road surface close to the house if I could which would at least let us get away!

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With the MOB and Bridesmaids on board, we steadily made it off that road and from there on the roads were pretty clear of snow and ice, so we had no dramas, thankfully. We got to Colwick Hall Hotel, the wedding venue, in very good time, after which we left and let them get on with their special day – in the warm!

For information about Betty and our services, please visit www.whitetaxiweddings.com