The Great Barn Wedding, Ayhno, Oxfordshire – Leah and Joe

Summer Wedding at The Great Barn

Leah and Joe’s beautiful wedding day was held at The Great Barn,  where I am a recommended supplier.  It is a privately owned venue in Aynho, Oxfordshire, which is comprised of two interconnecting 18th-century barns and set in 250 acres of stunning farmland, with three lakes and a woodland.

It took place on the last August Bank Holiday Sunday, an unusually hot day for England, with temperatures more typically common for the south of France or Spain than the village of Kings Sutton, where the couple tied the knot. With its quintessentially English, golden-stone buildings and rolling farmland, the cozy setting at the Great Barn was the perfect backdrop for the intimate gathering.

The Great Barn Wedding Fair

Having met them back at The Great Barn Wedding Fair in January 2019, I knew how much they loved the venue and how incredibly excited they were about their big day.

I remember arriving at Leah’s and being surprised by the relaxed atmosphere in the house. While make-up artist and hairdresser, Tanya Westley, concentrated on getting the girls ready, bride and bridesmaids chatted as if they had just got together for a girlie catch-up. This made the photography session much more natural and relaxed as it allowed my camera to snap the joyful mood in the room. Brides and bridesmaids are always best captured when they are distracted. There are particular moments that only a professional wedding photographer is able to grab, like the bride’s eyes glimmering with delight at the sight of her image in the mirror or the look of pride and adoration on the bride’s mother’s face.

It was only when the bells of St Peter’s and St Paul’s Church started ringing that the nerves started to show as we made our way to the Church. Some couples are more expressive than others. Some are not ashamed to shed a few tears of happiness, while others beam with excitement, as Leah did when the vicar declared them husband and wife.

Wedding Double Decker Red Bus

A true English wedding is not complete without the classic red double decker bus. Leah and Joe not only had one to take their guests from the church to the barn, but also used it as a fun backdrop for the wedding photographs.

Leah’s wedding colour scheme was soft, feminine and perfect for the bright summer weather. She had opted for shades of creams, pale blues and pinks, creating a dreamy palette, which accented the country scene seamlessly. The deep blue of her bridesmaids’s dresses really popped against the golden tones of the stone walls and bright greens of the gardens and rolling fields.

Great Barn Wedding Flowers

Their florist Sam the Flowerman had done an impeccable job with the floral arrangements and bouquets. Cream and pale pink roses mixed with eucalyptus and pretty pastel shades wildflowers dressed the round tables, giving the room a laid-back, country wedding feel. I love letting my lens catch the memories of the smallest detail, like the table setting with its mixed-match flower jars and colourful pots of jam. A show-stopping detail was their wedding cake: a whopping four-tier work-of-art, playfully adorned with roses and flowers, which really stood out in the pictures, contrasting with the beautiful old brick wall of the barn.

Leah and Joe’s relaxed attitude continued throughout the day, allowing me to wander and observe like an invisible spectator. Their passion for sport drove the couple and guests to want to share part of their day with England’s cricket team and their last few runs to win the Ashes. This meant taking the family shots around it until the winning result came in, and I felt delighted to see how much they trusted me. They knew they could relax, get into the game and forget I was there. Nothing would be missed.

During the afternoon, the wedding party lingered and mingled in the private Patio Garden and large terrace where they indulged in some cold drinks, while enjoying the summer sunshine, music and a large number of garden games. This was the perfect time to take the most natural shots, when guests were immersed in conversations and activities, watching, smiling or laughing heartily, and completely oblivious to the woman behind the big camera, who, once more, had snapped that precious moment of intimacy and connection.

Bride and Groom Photographs

In the evening, I walked with Leah and Joe down to the lakes, where bathed by the golden hour sunshine, I captured some of the most intimate moments of the day, such as the gentle holding of their hands or the delirious ‘I-m-so-happy-I-married-you’ look expressed in their eyes.

We ended the wonderful day with a good frolic and dance back at the Barn. Because quite frankly, there is simply no other way to end such a serene and beautiful day!

The Great Barn Wedding Fair, Thursday 16th January

If you are one of the lucky couples who has got engaged over Christmas, the Great Barn has an upcoming Wedding Fair, on Thursday 16th January. As one of their recommended suppliers, I will be attending the event and offering all newly engaged couples who book me as their wedding photographer a FREE Engagement Photoshoot. For more details, please message me.


Venue – The Great Barn Ayhno

Make Up Artist – Tanya Westley

Catering – Kearnings Catering UK

DJ and evening entertainment – Smooth Move Events

Lighting  – Deans Chair Covers

Transport – The Vintage Red Bus Company

Flowers – Sam the Flower Man


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