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Lockdown Love in Herefordshire

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Lockdown Love in Herefordshire

In June 2020, as lockdown restrictions in England were just beginning to ease, one lucky couple were gifted the chance to celebrate their love in a beautifully intimate commitment ceremony in Herefordshire.

With an estimated 64% of weddings directly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, either by postponements or cancellations, it’s been a tough year for couples and for the wedding industry. This gave Jayne Pritchard – the venue manager at new wedding venue The Orchard at Munsley – the bright idea to get together with some trusted wedding suppliers to run a commitment ceremony competition!

Jayne says: “We thought it would be great to create a special moment for one lucky couple, and it was a fantastic afternoon, which went off without a hitch!”

The lucky competition winners, Alex and Sophie, were joined by their immediate family for a celebratory afternoon at the Orchard, where the venue and suppliers worked together to create an intimate, socially distanced occasion.

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“My friend entered me in the competition on Instagram and I was shocked to have won,” explains Sophie. “It was a magical afternoon.”

The couple enjoyed a bespoke ceremony led by humanist celebrant Jennie Hermolle, which took place in a beautiful outdoor space designed by wedding stylist Lauradana Day from Wedding Creations. The scene was completed with wedding flowers, a bouquet and a buttonhole from florist Alexandra Sylvester, while photographer David Liebst was there to capture all the special moments.

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“She created a personalised ceremony with beautiful words which summed up our relationship perfectly.”

Sophie and Alex had not originally planned a celebrant-led ceremony and didn’t know much about what they involved, but were delighted with the idea of a personal celebration of love and commitment with no restrictions. “Once I’d spoken to Jennie over the phone, she explained that it creates a very personal celebration of love and marriage, wherever you like,” says Sophie. “She asked me some questions and from that, created a personalised ceremony with beautiful words which summed up our relationship perfectly.”

“The ceremony wasn’t legally binding; it was to celebrate the couple’s commitment to each other, and it was a fantastic chance for us to get out into the orchard, get creative, and see each other again as the lockdown began to ease,” says Jayne.

Due to the success of the afternoon, Jayne and the other suppliers have decided to offer a commitment ceremony package to other couples who have had to cancel their wedding plans and would like to create a special moment to remember. “We’ve put together a package for couples to come and enjoy a commitment ceremony in the orchard, which is a bit like a precursor to the big day,” explains Jayne.

For more information about this wonderful opportunity, you can get in touch with The Orchard at Munsley via their profile page. We’re sure they will have plenty of takers!

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About the Venue

The Orchard at Munsley is a dog-friendly wedding venue nestled in the rolling hills of Herefordshire, run by husband and wife team, Jayne and Ian. The apple orchard sits alongside a quaint church and the scene is complemented by willow trees surrounding a pretty duck pond. Launched in 2019, the venue welcomes couples from all over the UK and prides itself on creating personalised, bespoke weddings and ceremonies to remember. The season runs from May-October.

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