“As soon as we spoke to you – you made us feel completely at ease (we are a little camera shy as a couple) – you are so friendly and helpful and you communication and professionalism was second to none.

The photos are more than we could have hoped for.”

Having grown up in the flat lands of Norfolk and spent most of my adult life in the Midlands, I was always intrigued by the geography and the landscape of the Lake District and I took every opportunity I could – despite the battles with the M6 – to photograph weddings in this incredible part of the county. This winter wedding was my first visit to Askham Hall, and my first time exploring the Northern Lakes; little did I know that some three years later I’d end up marrying on nearby Ullswater and making Cumbria my home! Having seen images from other photographers of Askham hall weddings I was excited to shoot there and as soon as I arrived, I knew the place was magic. 

Penelope and Freddie are the sweetest of pairs too, and despite having only just spoken briefly on the phone a few months before the wedding I instantly became one of the fold… There were so many wonderful parts of the day it’s hard to pinpoint what I loved most; their humanist ceremony was just gorgeous and the speeches were real tearjerkers… But I think the bit I loved best was was Freddie and his best man came into the bar where I was eating dinner prior to the speeches to practice and pace out the room… Then sit for few minutes of calm beforehand. Electric tension is wonderful!

What an incredibly special day with wonderful people (and pooches) – I hope now that it’s but a stonesthrow from home, I get to go back to another wedding at Askham Hall soon!

How did you meet?

We met on Denali (North Americas highest mountain) in Alaska back in May 2016. We were on the same expedition to climb to mountain and shared a tent for almost 4 weeks!

Tell me your proposal story:

Freddie proposed to me on Resolute Beach in the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park just north of Sydney in January last year. I had no idea and it was a pretty normal day for us. Coffee, breakfast and a good long walk. We were taking a break on the beach and I went into the backpack to get my book – and Freddie dropped a knee!

Why did you choose to have your wedding at Askham Hall?

My mum Dorothy chose it! She knew about Askham Hall as she has lived in Cumbria for many years and I think she wanted me to get married at ‘home’! It was the only venue we viewed and we knew as soon as we saw it that it would be perfect for us.

What was it you loved about your outfits and accessories that made you choose them?

I wanted a simple but unusual wedding dress and I look terrible in white! I stumbled across a sample dress in a champagne colour and loved it. Again it was the first dress I saw and totally different from what I had in mind. I didn’t wear a veil but flowers in my hair instead as I love nature and wanted to incorporate it into my outfit.
Freddie wore a gorgeous navy wool suit – elegant and understated.

Tell me about the vision you had for your wedding including your theme/colour scheme/styling/flowers:

Simple and neutral. We didn’t really follow a theme – just picked each item because we loved it!

What was your first dance and why did you choose it?

It was Billy Paul’s version of ‘Your Song’. We were really struggling for a first dance song as we have pretty different tastes in music. We were surfing in Sri Lanka back in September and a gorgeous place we had dinner in played this song and we both instantly said – thats the song!

What were the most wonderful parts of the day for you?

Marrying each other! It was so emotional and so overwhelming. I have never felt so much happiness and the love in the room was overpowering. 
I loved the whole day – from getting ready, to the last dance, the Cumbrian weather put on the most perfect show for us too.

Why did you choose Hannah Hall Photography as your photographer, and what was your experience of your photography on the day?

I was recommend Hannah Hall Photography by another photographer who was unavailable. I’m so glad she recommend you. I think you both have different styles but a pretty similar vibe. You make beautiful art!

Also, as soon as we spoke to you, you made us feel completely at ease (we are a little camera shy as a couple) – you are so friendly and helpful and your communication and professionalism was second to none. The photos are more than we could have hoped for.

What would be your best bit of advice to other couples planning their wedding?

Just enjoy it! It shouldn’t be a stressful process. Let it grow – be true to yourselves and keep in mind all the time why you are doing it. Then enjoy married life!

A rustic barn wedding venue in the Lowther Valley, Cumbria

Askham Hall is the venue that really does offer its wedding couples everything they could ask for. Askham Hall itself is hundreds of years old and offers grand and stylish bedrooms perfect for wedding morning preparations, and is set in extensive grounds perfect for your wedding photographs later in the day. The barn, where you can hold your ceremony as well as your celebrations, is perfectly manicured yet retains its rustic charm with exposed stone walls and oak beams. If you’d prefer to hold your wedding ceremony outside at Askham Hall you can do that in the gardens too and of course the church in Askham is just a short walk away. Although the fell views are more distant at Askham Hall, the grounds and village are so picturesque you needn’t worry about locations for your wedding pictures. After their humanist wedding ceremony, Penny, Freddie and I took a stroll down to the River Lowther for their wedding portraits on Askham bridge.


Hair: Claire Hall // Celebrant: Veronika Robinson // Cake: Cotswold Cheese Company

Flowers: Vine & Roses // Entertainment: Girl on Sax // Venue: Askham Hall


Are you planning your wedding at Askham Hall or another Lake District wedding venue? Get in touch!




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