A Durham Cathedral Wedding: Julian & Cathy

by Sasha Wilkins on August 15, 2011 · 24 comments

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The wedding of one of my oldest friends took place at Durham Cathedral on Saturday afternoon. I was sixteen & Julian fifteen when we met at boarding school, both indie kids with a sub to the NME and a penchant for music festivals. Many years later, we are still good friends, with a penchant for music festivals, and there were five of us from school there to help celebrate his marriage to the wonderful Cathy.

We hadn’t realised just how unusual it was to able to attend a marriage service there until the priest told us that this was only the 200th wedding to have taken place there since 1884. (Julian was able to be married in the cathedral because he had been a chorister there as a boy). And you can imagine his joy when he walked into the nave on Saturday to discover that his old maths teacher was one of the guides on duty that day.

 

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He & Cathy live in Los Angeles – he’s a musician, and she’s a television journalist, so we were so lucky that they decided to marry in England, allowing us to witness their ceremony. Because it was a very intimate celebration – just 58 of us invited to the reception, the marriage took place in the chancel of the cathedral, behind the rood screen, with us sitting in the choir stalls. A proper once in a lifetime experience.

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The organ music was sublime, echoing around the soaring spaces of the cathedral. Before the service we listened to Pachabel’s Canon, the bride walked in to Lohengrin’s Bridal Chorus (Here Comes the Bride), and during the service Julian’s mother sang Panis Angelicus so beautifully – it’s clear where Julian’s talent come from.

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This guest wins best hair (as viewed from my choir stall a step above him):

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And goodness they looked wonderful. Cathy’s dress, by bridal designer Ian Stuart, was one of the most ravishing I have ever seen (Cathy really does have immaculate taste). In her hair was a Jenny Packham sequin & pailette band. Here’s a close up of the stone-coloured dress:

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And me? Well, I wore an Erdem dress & Lara Bohinc shoes, with a Raoul navy clutch to the ceremony. Here I am in the cathedral cloisters during the after-ceremony photo taking. Thank you to my darling Rollo for taking the photo for me. (We took a bunch, but I am impaled on the grass in most of them, as my five inch heels kept sinking into the damp grass.)

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{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Seema August 15, 2011 at 19:26

what an absolutely STUNNING dress the bride is wearing. The detail is so intricate I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like it. What a beautiful bride, the cathedral looks amazing too. I love small weddings, this one looks breathtaking.

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Meaghan August 15, 2011 at 19:49

Hello,

I just thought I’d send you a little note to let you know I absolutely love your blog posts. I live in Melbourne, Australia, where it feels like we are so far away and segregated from the rest of the world. I guess we are. I really enjoy reading about your glamourous lifestyle in England. How I wish I could jump in the car or on a train and be somewhere fabulous, as you do. Thank you for sharing snippets of your life with us.

Meaghan

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Rosie August 15, 2011 at 21:22

What a beautiful wedding dress. The (highly unusual – suprisingly) stone-white colour looks so pristine against the ancient stone. Lovely :)

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janie August 16, 2011 at 03:40

It looks like a wonderful day ! Thanks for sharing that with us. The cathedral is stunning, as was the bride, Wow! what a beautiful gown.

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Charlotte Palmer August 16, 2011 at 04:38

Dear LLG,

I have been reading your blog for some time now and have enjoyed reading about your exciting adventures! I haven’t ever commented before now but felt I had to when I saw Durham Cathedral on here.

I’m so thrilled to read that the cathedral had the same breathtaking and spectacular effect on you as it did on myself and many of my peers during our three years as undergraduates up there. The wedding looks simply wonderful; a truly memorable day for all I’m sure.

Charlotte X

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Karole August 16, 2011 at 04:43

what a beautiful dress!

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Tiny D August 16, 2011 at 05:52

What an AMAZING wedding dress!

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LaraLainThatsMyName August 16, 2011 at 06:38

Wow, her dress is lovely. So unique and it really looks like something not just anyone could pull off, that’s what I love about an amazing wedding dress – it looks like it was made for the bride (and her only)! Lovely x

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Laura August 16, 2011 at 06:51

They are quite possibly the most stunning couple I have ever seen. When I showed my friend your pictures (raving about the brides dress) she asked me if they were models. Hope you had a wonderful day. xx

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Kat August 16, 2011 at 07:13

Utterly gorgeous! And sympathies on the sinking – when I graduated from Durham I ended up wearing wedge boots to avoid just that.

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