Chilli Films came highly recommended to us by Matt Cox a good friend from work. Having a video done of the wedding was not something that Kady and I had really considered. Boy I’m glad we did in the end, everybody told us before that there would be so much going on that we would miss 90% of the big day. If anything I think that was an understatement, the figure was nearer 98% and even this preview has brought back so many memories that we’d completely forgotten already, we can’t wait to see the final DVD!
Hannah Manning who runs Chilli Films http://www.chillifilms.co.uk/ was utterly professional and helpful right from the word go. Considering we were only able to give her four weeks notice she pulled out all the stops to get the right preparatory measures in place to ensure the filming on the day would go to plan. Both Kady and I were incredibly impressed by the way both her and her husband Doug the second cameraman went about their business. They were unobtrusive yet always seemed to be in just the right place to get the shots needed. Testament to how good they were is that our Padre Tony Coslett, who was quite sensitive about people encroaching on the ceremony, I don’t think even noticed they were there.
Not only were Hannah and Doug professional in their business of being cameramen, they were also fantastic at shepherding the 180 plus cats (guests) we had at the wedding around. Ensuring that as the day got more drunken, there were still plenty of video messages being left and also that the key events were being filmed. Both incredibly courteous and friendly, we couldn’t have hoped for a more professional or helpful team. When all the timings started to run over – again as we’d been warned they would – Hannah and Doug remained flexible and pushed on with the filming, Kady and I really felt for them, boy they worked hard that day!
After the wedding Channel 5 news did a story on us, Hannah was able at incredibly short notice to produce a short wedding clip to be used by them, again incredibly flexible. The overall experience of dealing with Chilli Films has been second to none and we can’t thank or recommend them highly enough!
Hope you enjoy the preview of the Wedding DVD, please remember this is copyright to Chilli Films so no downloading, re-posting, publishing etc without their express agreement http://www.chillifilms.co.uk/
At the same time as I was on the Stag Do Kady went off to Bristol for her Hen Do, I suspect I’ve been given the sanitized photos as it all just seems a bit too tame to me…
Friday was Browns Bar/Restaurant in Bristol, Saturday was a Spa Day at Charlton House in Shepton Mallet. Saturday night Jesters Comedy Club in Bristol.
So let’s rewind a little bit. As previously mentioned Kady and I had already planned on getting married in Kefalonia in Jul 11. When we got the bad news at the Spire Hospital, pretty much our first conversation as we walked out of the building was what we were going to do about advancing our marriage. We were obviously pretty shocked by what we had been told and realized there was not a moment to waste. We had decided by the time we had even gotten to the car that we were going to drastically advance the date of our wedding. Over the course of the next couple of hours we had agreed that the new date would be 1st Oct 10, some 4 1/2 weeks away, talk about setting ourselves a challenge.
What followed was a frenzy of planning! I went straight onto some major doses of various drugs as well as emergency Whole Brain Radiotherapy. This induced chronic physical fatigue but the drugs also brought false mental energy. Sleep went out of the window and I found myself only getting 3 hours a night. Sounds pretty horrendous and at times it was but it did mean that I was able to hammer out roughly 20 hours a day producing dozens of spreadsheets and word documents. That’s how we did the planning bit, I was getting very confused at times with the drugs, lack of sleep and the sheer time pressure. If I hadn’t documented everything there’s just no way I could have kept track of things.
Kady worked ferociously hard, producing invites, getting her dress sorted, dealing with friends and family who all threw themselves into helping us out also. One of the best things she did was fend off the barrage of emails and phone calls from me which although all done with the best intentions was contributing to make me feel worse. She did amazingly well and I am so proud of her. She of course didn’t have the drug induced mania that I did and just how she coped with all that as well as her own personal feelings about the situation I just don’t know. If you ever need a crash course in short sharp wedding planning then we are your people.
It of course wasn’t all us. So many work colleagues, my boss, an old friend of mine who is a former Army Padre, our families, our close friends did so much, the list is endless. Suffice to say we were completely overwhelmed by the help that we got. It just goes to show there is so much good human nature out there.
Quite a number of the guys who worked for me were phenomenal in volunteering to help us out also. They didn’t have to do anything but through their good nature they built and equipped a huge marquee in only two days, without that our wedding reception just couldn’t have happened! We were so grateful to them as I know from bitter experience that putting up tents, despite the joking about it, is the absolute last thing that soldiers like doing.
Well the Best Men Murray and Phil dug out blind for this. In true Stag Do tradition I gave them a half-arsed list of who I’d like to be there and they took the chaos onwards. It all got a bit confusing as to who was going to come in the end but ultimately there were dozens of old mates who turned up and it was awesome to catch up.
I think everyone started out thinking it was going to be some kind of crazy, mental, drunken affair. Apparently I’m know for liking nights like that… However my six month headache which was funnily enough made worse by alcohol, plus the after effects of Radiotherapy had somewhat put me off the idea of drinking much. All I wanted was a quiet day in London with my pals, chilling out and enjoying the day. That’s exactly what I got and what a day it was after the past few weeks. It started out with an Executive ‘Flight’ complete with Champagne on The London Eye, something I’ve wanted to do for a long time, of course the boys had to dress me up for it…
What a laugh the London Eye was. Stag do then moved into the second of it’s three phases which was Punch and Judy in Covent Garden, drinking, standing on the balcony and generally catching up. Again a good laugh had by all. Unfortunately I was really feeling the tiring effects of the Radiotherapy by now and about 2100 decided discretion was the better part of valour and I should bail out. Thankfully ‘big Steve’ volunteered to drive me home to Amesbury, had a great nights sleep for the first time in weeks after a fantastic day! Really enjoyed looking at the photos as they came in over the next few days as the boys carried on the craziness! Check out the video of Dobbo at the end, never make the mistake of gobbing off at a Comedian whilst sat on the front row…
I’ll refine this later but here goes:
The Week Before it all Went Wrong
So the holiday in Aug 10 despite my not feeling well was a success. We had a week on the Greek island of Kefalonia, met the wedding planners, visited all the relevant locations and were happy it was on track. It was all starting to get pretty damn exciting!
Lots of people have asked us why we chose Kefalonia, well in May 2009 I had just come back from a gruelling 6 month tour in Iraq working with the Department for International Development helping the Iraqis to rebuild and modernise their country. Extremely rewarding but utterly exhausting, I also had the privilege of working with the United States Army, as well as the Royal Marines, their levels of commitment to what we were trying to achieve was truly staggering and an inspiration, it was an honour to be a part of it. After six months of long days and nights though I was ready for a break.
I had always wanted to go to Kefalonia after seeing the film ‘Captain Corellis Mandolin’. Within a day of being there I knew this was a place I would always be coming back to, thankfully Kady agreed. If you need any more reasons, just check out the photos although they only tell part of the story, the people of the island are wonderful also.
Our honeymoon was at Lainston House Hotel – http://www.lainstonhouse.com/EXCLUSIVE_HOTELS/the_hotel.aspx near Winchester which was a whole 30 minutes drive from home. Regardless of that it was such a beautiful place it really was like being away and without a massive trek to get there which after the previous manic few weeks was exactly what we needed.
We got there to find a beautiful room with flowers, chocolates and champagne which had been left by Mike’s work colleagues, incredibly kind of them and really left us feeling like we were in the lap of luxury.
So what did we do all week? The answer, not a great deal! We were exhausted and had the most amazing time just walking the grounds which were beautiful, a couple of days out shopping in Winchester as well as a day out on the Isle of Wight and a day walking on the beach at Milford on Sea. Kady was particularly taken by the whirlpool bath in the room which also had a TV. We also did a fair amount of eating… All in all the whole honeymoon was exactly what the Doctor ordered and we arrived home after a week feeling wonderfully refreshed and relaxed. We also managed to squeeze in an interview and appear on Channel 5 News which was a bit surreal and came on the back of our mini-media storm where we appeared in The Times, The News of the World and The Daily Express.
Channel 5 News Piece Friday 8 October 2010