Amy and Ian had a magical wedding at the Rhos Church in North Wales followed by a stunning reception at the award winning Grosvenor Pulford Hotel just over the English border in Cheshire.
I have also compiled a YouTube slide show of their wonderful day.
And below is the traditional photos from a phenomenal wedding with an amazing couple.
Amy looking amazing on her wedding day. I love the black and white finish to this wedding photo. It always a very artistic choice.
The ‘English’ country garden of the Grosvenor Pulford Hotel is a very magical place for a wedding. The beautiful blue July sky is a perfect back drop
Wow what a garden, with an amazing sky and a stunning couple. The Grosvenor Pulford is a very special place for wedding photography.
All the gang from a wonderful wedding.
And the zoomed version in a colour sepia finish.
Black and White to add a certain artistic element to the photos.
I love this one, a beautiful couple with the path leading your eye straight to them and then a beautiful backdrop of trees and summer sky.
Photos like this are far more complex than they appear, shooting straight into the summer sun can result in awful photos, but get it right and the drama adds immensely to the image. I love this wedding photo!!
And the same two photos but in a sepia finish this time. I’m not sure which I prefer.
How beautiful is Amy? A stunning bride this time we have gone indoors to the mirror at the Grosvenor Pulford.
I love this sequence of wedding photographs of Ian and Amy playing!!
One thing with the Grosvenor Pulford you are never short of places to take photos, this is taken at dusk in the amazing Oriental Garden.
What an amazing dress, Amy looks so angelic in the gardens of the Grosvenor Pulford against a setting sun.
I love all the elements in this image, a beautiful sky, the couple reflecting on the water. A stunning garden.
One for the Album cover?
Now we are in the order of the day starting in the morning with all the details.
The bridal preparation is a wonderful part of the day, you can feel the atmosphere building.
It a lot easier for the men in the pub!
The long long wait – a minute feels like an hour!
Here comes the bride.
After a beautiful service it out into the sunshine of a beautiful July day.
Kayleigh and Jamie had a really stunning wedding starting at Dodleston just a few miles South from the Roman city of Chester and very close to the Welsh border in the historic St Mary’s Church. It was a beautiful backdrop to a wonderful service.
After the service the reception was held at the award winning Grosvenor Pulford Hotel just a few miles away. My favourite venue and it always a brilliant venue for the wedding photography.
Kayleigh looked amazing on her big day and it was a pleasure to work with such a fantastic day.
I have added the photos in a near chronograph order but in two groups. The first groupings are the ‘fine art’ photos the ones I have breathed on! The others are straight out of the camera and show all the fun and life of the day but some will be edited later if chosen for what is going to be an amazing album.
The Snow Roads is one of the finest 300km of cycling in the UK. Starting from Kirriemuir in the Angus Glens of North East Scotland and winding its way over the Cairn O’Mount to Banchory and North into Aberdeenshire and on into Whisky country and Strathdon to Duthtown before reaching the Cairngorm National Park and the first of the ‘Snow Roads’ and the climb up to the Lecht Ski Centre. Following the Lecht is the wildest part of the route over to Braemar before the final climb over the highest navigable road in the UK to Glenshee Ski Centre before a fantastic descent and the return to Kirriemuir.
The bare statistics are 300k (188 miles) and 5000 meters (16500ft) of climbing and this combined with the fickle Scottish Weather makes for a big day.
This was my third time on the Snow Roads and a little bit different in that I was on the ‘Organisers Ride’ which was a week before the main event and had just a hand full of people riding it including Alex the man who dreamed up this beautiful event and had invited me up to ride knowing I couldn’t do the actual event as I had prior work commitments.
The day started in the early dawn and we left in a small group with several Snow Road virgins (indeed long distance virgins!) including a couple of ladies – which if they completed the loop would double the female finishers on the ten year history of the ride!
The first near 200k (125miles) of the ride is I always think a bit of a softening up for the Snow Roads proper and we had a wonderful ride over the 1st climb of the day of the Cairn O’Mount and its super-fast decent through Strathdon and the undulating car free glens to Dufftown in Whisky Country. From Dufftown the route undulates on towards the Cairngorm National Park and I always find it a bit of a strange section. The road undulates constantly but mentally you are waiting for the Lecht, and this section just seems to go on and on….
The climb of the Lecht, which at 200k is a major landmark and also the physical turning for home of the route. By now I was in a group of five including Alex and the three newbies. I must admit I was filled with admiration for the dogged determination to finish this brutal section up the Lecht before a magnificent decent (and a quick beer in Cock Bridge!) ond over the edges of the Cairngorms over climb B1 and B2 (I think it will not take much imagination to work out what B stands for when you hit a big hill with 200+ k in the legs!)
Hills B1 & B2 for me are the finest part of the ride – the country you are in looking over to the High Cairngorms and the Snow covered Ben Avon and forward to Royal Lochnagar is breath-taking. And after a really sunny day it was starting to get cold and layers where needed. The weather so far had been brilliant.
Arriving at Braemar and a bite to eat, and only one climb left – the road up to the Glenshee ski resort – this is quite an easy climb, but maybe not so easy with 250k in the legs and 4000+ meters of climbing. It also went dark about now and the temperature plummeted – my GPS was showing 4c!
I can still remember the Braemar control here from the previous year, several riders quite unable to face the pull up to Glenshee and many looked totally beaten up by the route. Yet today the group I was with showed character and determination going back ‘Once more unto the breach’. It was an honour to be riding with such people.
This last section in the dark and cold with summer gear (well that all I had….) was a bit brutal at times and Glen Isla is just hilly enough to really hurt at the business end of a 300k
All five of riders arrived in Kirriemuir to the sound of pubs full of merriment and noise. And we had doubled the amount of female finishers!!
I had a great time on the Snowroads and enjoyed helping Alex help three newbies around one of the most challenging 300k rides in the UK. Always a pleasure to help Alex and I hope to see you on the Snowroads sometime soon. And hopefully with a few Chester Road Club newbies along for the ride
A very different post to normal, it a little recap of my travels by cycle in 2014. As the year draws to an end it always good to look back and plan anew a one or two people had said I should do a little blog so here it is. I’ve only added Audax rides and events of 100 miles or more apart from the TransWales which hold a special place in my heart so deserves to be included and deserves a future blog post of it own.
I’ve started with a very boring table and will add a hopefully less boring account of each ride! Some rides deserve a post of there own! I think writing this is far harder than riding!
One way solo 200k to Rhayader.
Shropshire solo 200 to Eccleshall.
Solo 200 of the Clwyidian Mountains.
Solo 200 to Montgomery.
The Bwlch Y Groes with Micheal Henderson.
One way trip to Keswick visiting family.
Montgomery and Bishops Castle with the CRC.
Debbie and Jo’s first 100 miler,
The Bwlch and Lake Vyrnwy with the CRC
The Snow Roads Audax
3 Coasts 600k Audax
CTC 100 miler
Montgomery and Bishops Castle with the CRC
Montgomery and Bishops Castle with the CRC
Windsor Chester Windsor 600
100 miler with Debbie and Jo
Solo 200k to Montgomery and Bishops Castle
Three day Trans Wales with the the Chester Road club.
Solo 200k to the Stiperstone and Kerry Ridgeway
Kerry Ridgeway and Stiperstones with the CRC
04/01/14 January’s 1st long ride, a 200k DIY Audax down to Rhayader
The mile munching started for me on the 4th of January with a solo, cold damp, one way ride into a head wind to Rhayader.
I left in the dark and arrived in the dark through a snowstorm and all my lights failed in the cold and the GPS registered an average temperature of 3c and a finishing temp of -5!
It was a flat first 100k then a lumpy ride over the Long Mynd before a dark and snow bound ride over the Knighton Hills into Rhayader.
January miles count double apparently….
28/02/14 saw a solo 200k DIY Audax.
Funny how misleading graphs can be – it looks hilly but is actual a flattish ride staying in the shelter of the Cheshire Shropshire plain. Apart from a reluctance to leave the cafe into the cold again at Eccleshall I can’t really remember much about this solo effort around Shropshire.
08/03/14 A 3rd solo 200K DIY Audax over the Clewydian Range of mountains in North Wales.
A lumpy ride over the Panorama and Horseshoe Pass before dropping down to Ruthin and a late breakfast in lovely weather with for the most part a tail wind.
Then climbing up to Lake Brenig and across the moors to Abergelde by the seaside before turning into the wind and to Chester. Lovely day through stunning country with spectacular views.
01/04/14 was a solo 200k DIY Audax to Montgomery.
Flattish run down to the borders to get April going. Windy run down with a cracking tail wind back. I had my first experience of the ‘Montgomery Wind Tunnel’ on every subsequent ride down there the wind has been brutal for the last ten or fifteen miles into Montgomery no matter if it hasn’t felt that bad getting there. I’ve started reversing the loop…
16/04/14 DIY 200K to Lake Vyrnwy
Into big country with Michael Henderson from the Chester Road Club. Hilly ride over Wales highest road climb, Bwlch Y Groes before lunch at Lake Vyrnwy and returning home via the Hinualt pass and the Horseshoe Pass. A really grande day out with warm spring like weather and fine company.
21/04/14 A hundred miler up to Keswick to visit family on a bank holiday
A really nice solo ride up to Keswick – well really nice after I got past the massive built up area around Warrington. This countries cycling infrastructure is a joke! Another fine day on the bike and another 100 miles in the legs.
10/05/14 DIY 200k Audax with the CRC
A very windy ride down to Montgomery and it wind tunnel, then to Bishops Castle and a very wind assisted ride home with a Peter and David from the Chester Road Club. I love this area it is more or less car free.
11/05/14 Debbie and Jo’s first hundred miler
It always nice to put something back into cycling and as a rider I think your first 100 miler is always a big objective. We had a few along on another windy day – the forecast was for torrential rain and gales – we got the gales but the rain stayed away. Not the easiest first 100 but at least it was wind assisted coming home.
18/05/14 Back to the Bwlch DIY 200 with the Chester Road Club
And the video. This was a two stage ride – 8 people left Chester early doors and met up with another gang who where doing just the central hilly bit on the graph above.
It was a really fine day with great company and we managed to help a few newbies to break the 200K barrier. And I even managed to take some photos!
31/05/14 The Snow Roads 300K Audax with 5000 meters of climbing
The first long one for 2014 and my favourite 300K. I am from Aberdeen and have lived in the Strathdon Glens as a child. I have travelled over these hills as a walker and mountain runner for decades and it feels like home even if in all probabilities leafy Cheshire is where I’ll always be!!
The Snowroads take in the major climbs in the North East of Scotland including you guessed it the Snow resorts of Lecht and Glen Shee. It is a truly wonderful tour of the Grampian Mountains and I rode it with a few friends many of which had never attempted a 300K before let along over the hills which lay ahead.
Superb day out in for Scotland wonderful weather – even if I did feel on the verge of hypothermia coming off Glen Shee at high speed in the dark at just a few degrees above freezing.
14/06/14 Three Coasts 600K Audax
Cracking route starting in the middle of England at Mytholmroyd near Hebden Bridge before riding across to Bridlington on the East Coast and then a return to Mytholmroyd and heading out to the West Coast at Blackpool, then heading North to Glasson Dock before a rather lumpy (particularly with 500K in the legs!!) return across the Forest of Bowland to Mythrolmroyd – not forgetting the very last climb up Blackstone Edge before the final drop down England longest decent to the finish. Really fine ride and one I had bailed on a few years back with an erm sore bum!!
29/06/14 Cyclist Touring Club 100 miler with Friends
A lovely relaxed ride up to the Wizard Cafe and a few lumps around Macclesfield before a ride back with pub stops along the way! Cycling at it best. Also helping a few others hit the magic 100 mile bench mark for the first time.
12th and 26th of July
Twice along the same route with the Chester Road Club helping a few people do there first 200K. The loop around to Montgomery and back via Bishops Castle is getting quite popular!
09/08/14 Windsor Chester Windsor 600K Audax
This was the first 600K Audax in the UK and after a gap of many years was re-erected this year and what a wonderful route. It managed to go from Windsor to Chester and by pass nearly every town of any size along the way. The worst part was riding into Chester and leaving again into Hurrican Bertha when I could of just gone to bed! Hurracane Bertha was fun, as events all around where cancelled with the rather biblical rain and flood conditions the Audax faithful never batted an eyelash! The rain only lasted about six hours anyway……
I’m the one sat down in the Chester Road Club jersey and day-glow shoes at the half way point of Chester getting ready to do battle with Hurricane Bertha and the return run.
Windsor Chester Windsor also finished off my Super Randonneur series for 2014 which is a 200k/300k/400k/600k in a calender year. I didn’t do a 400 so substituted did 2x 600k instead.
A rather fine ride indeed – now if only they would start it in Chester instead!!
07/09/14 100 miler with Debbie and Jo
A lovely day out over the Goyt Valley with rather wooden legs! Cheshire has some wonderful cycling.
30/09/14 Solo 200K to Bishops Castle
Same map as above – the default run down to Montgomery and Bishops castle this time on the last day of the month keeping my streak of 38 months of at least a 200K a month going. Lovely day out on the bike and even the Montgomery Wind Tunnel wasn’t too windy!!
17/18/19 October The Trans Wales
This was a Chester Road Club event starting in St Davids (well a bit outside and we had to ride there!!) and finishing back in Chester taking in some of the finest climbs in Wales with for me the highlights where the Y Talbot pub!!! ow and the Elan Valley Mountain Road, Dylife Mountain Road and the good Old Bwlch Y groes from Dinas.
Mighty climbs with brilliant company and a blue print for future events. It deserves a blog post of it own. It is on the to do list!
29/10/14 200K DIY Audax up the Stiperstone and Kerry Ridgeway climbs.
Had company for half of the ride and a solo ride home – really bleak, cold and grey but with some wonderful climbs up over the Stiperstone and Kerry Ridgeway. It felt like winter! It was also a reccie for a Chester RC ride the following week.
03/11/14 Start of the Chester RC Mile Munchers 200K DIY Audax the map and profile is as above.
This was the beginning of a monthly mile muncher ride with the CRC legions and a way of promoting Audax events. 8 people completed a cracking ride with two climbs. I’m sure some will have decided the long stuff isn’t for them but for others the start of a very long a winding road.
It was a really fine day out with good company, I managed to miss everyone at the start and along with Neal found the remaining six just outside Shrewsbury and ready for a coffee stop. Before sticking impressively well together and finishing in the dark as a cohesive group.
I hope you have enjoyed reading the blog – I found it rather tough writing it!!
Kirsty and Wayne had an amazing day at one of Cheshire’s finest venues the award winning Grosvenor Pulford Hotel and Spa which nestles right on the Welsh border.
The Grosvenor Pulford has a stunning collection of gardens with both a traditional English garden and a stunning Oriental garden which gives a massive scope for photography and even the weather was kind.