Helena and Adam – A Nautical-Themed Wedding in a Historic London Wedding Venue
Helena and Adam were married at the Tower of London on September 26th 2020 in the Chapel Royal of St Peter Ad Vincula. They then had their beautiful, nautical themed wedding reception at Trinity House. With just 24 guests and their photographer, Maria Assia Photography, this intimate, COVID-safe wedding was still absolutely breathtaking regardless of the restrictions! Find your perfect wedding venue using the Guides for Brides wedding venue finder.
Helena and Adam were set up on a blind date by a mutual friend. Their date was incredibly successful as they were engaged 18 months later. Their original wedding date should have been April 25th, the anniversary of the couple’s first date. However, due to coronavirus, the original wedding was postponed until September 26th.
Luckily, Helena is an event manager, so took the wedding planning in her stride! Of course, it was a hugely emotional time when the couple first had to postpone. Then the closer it got to September, they realised they had to scale everything down. No canapes, no drinks reception, limited guest list, no band, no dancefloor, no photobooth and no disco ball!
So, further restrictions in the two weeks leading up to the big day created a few nervous moments. However, it was fun seeing the ideas come together. Also, the couple hope to have a celebration party in 2021, with a disco ball!
Helena wore the gorgeous Orla Dress and Henri Veil from Grace Loves Lace, perfectly paired with a pair of gold Jimmy Choos! A personal touch was an Eden B Bespoke Lena hairvine which seamlessly incorporated a family brooch that belonged to Helena’s great grandmother. Find your dream bridal wear here!
Helena had 4 bridesmaids who wore navy blue Phase 8 jumpsuits. These were paired with matching Eden B Lena hairpins and matching gold knot bracelets that the bride had bought them as a thank you gift.
The groom wore his Royal Navy uniform, while the groomsmen wore either military uniform or navy blue suits with anchor ties.
Helena and Adam were wed in the Chapel Royal of St Peter Ad Vincula at the Tower of London. The Chapel Royal of St Peter Ad Vincula is the chapel the couple attended most frequently together as a result initially of the close affiliation Adam’s Royal Naval Reserve unit has with the Tower and the Chapel. So, it seemed the most appropriate place to make their vows to each other and they are very grateful that they were granted permission by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Governor of the Tower!
The couple had 24 guests in attendance (meeting the restriction of 30 people at the time), along with a photographer, organist and Canon Reverend Roger Hall to marry the couple! To get to the ceremony venue, the wedding party, consisting of Helena, bridesmaids and the bride’s parents travelled from the bride’s flat in Vauxhall to Tower Pier up the Thames on a Thames Clipper!
There, they were met by the Yeoman Warder, ‘Basher’, and led in through the Anne Boleyn Gate. One of Helena’s highlights of the day was arriving at the Chapel and seeing Adam waiting for her at the top of the aisle then saying their vows in front of their very closest family and friends.
During the ceremony, Helena’s brother read ‘Come O’er the Sea’ by Thomas Moore while Adam’s best friend read Colossians Chapter 3 verses 12-17. Then, the newlyweds were cheered out of the Chapel under a Guard of Honour Sword Arch by two of the Groomsmen.
The couple chose Trinity House for their reception as it is the home of the corporation responsible for safeguarding shipping, seafarers and navigation by lighthouses and buoys. As both the bride and groom have a strong connection to the sea, they loved the idea that their venue hire fee was going to a charity which is very close to both their hearts. The venue was decorated in a classic nautical theme with a navy blue, gold and white colour scheme.
At Trinity House, the newlyweds’ arrival was by ringing the brass bell from the (de-commissioned) HMS Royal Yacht Britannia. The couple had afternoon tea from Payne and Gunter caterers, whose Pastry Chef saved the day by making a vegan and gluten-free wedding cake with only two days notice after the couple’s previous cake maker pulled out at the last minute! Helena and Adam then cut this amazing cake with a ceremonial dress sword provided gratis by Trinity House.
The reception was able to continue with some COVID-secure additions. As there couldn’t be any entertainment, the couple asked their guests to take polaroid pictures of themselves and stick them in the guestbook with nautical themed stickers instead!
The favours also include personalised mini hand sanitizer bottles, as well as boxes of vegan and gluten-free chocolate sea salt fudge. Helena said “seeing our friends and family relaxed and chatting to each other in a COVID secure way was definitely a high point of the day. It was something we had looked forward to for so long through the months of lockdown!”
The newlyweds changed into going away clothes ready to jet off on their honeymoon. Just before they left, Helena threw her bouquet outside the front door of Trinity House in a shower of confetti! The happy couple finished their incredible day by travelling straight to the airport to go on a romantic honeymoon to Greece! There, they sailed into sunset around the South Ionian.