Priory Cottages Wedding Photography | Bex & John

priory cottages wedding photographer

A gorgeous autumn wedding at Priory Cottages near Wetherby in Yorkshire.

Priory Cottages wedding photographer. Bex and John were married at Priory Cottages towards the end of October. I love photographing weddings at Priory Cottages; it’s beautiful all year round. The courtyard has like a French country chateau feel, especially in the summer time, and I always love the indoor confetti photo there. I hadn’t been to Priory Cottages in a couple of years, and last time I did it rained all day, so I was very pleased to see that whilst it might not be sunny it was going to be dry for Bex and John!

Getting ready.

I arrived at Priory Cottages to capture Bex getting ready in one of the cottages on site. I was really happy that she had booked my favourite hair stylist/makeup artist, Lauren Rippin, who always does an incredible job and who I always go to if I need my own makeup doing! Or my eyebrows! Prep was in full swing when I got there. I got few detail shots of Bex’s amazing gown (such a statement dress!), and then just spent a really lovely couple of hours hanging out with Bex and her bridesmaids and her mum who were all so lovely. I really enjoyed getting to know everybody and capturing Bex having her hair and makeup done. Her sister and her mum gave her some lovely gifts while she was getting ready as well which was really sweet to see, and she even managed a quick FaceTime call with her gorgeous rabbits who were being looked after by a friend!

John was also getting ready in one of the cottages on the other side of the courtyard, which meant that I could nip over there to see him and the guys getting ready too. John’s family is Scottish so they were all in grey tartan kilts which looked really cool. One of my favourite videographers Simon Manning was there as well, and I always love working with him because we have a pretty similar style and he’s such a calm and quiet presence on the day.

Simon and I then headed back over to Bex’s cottage to see her getting dressed. This wass a little bit stressful as it did look like the dress might not do up for a while as the zip kept getting caught in all the layers, but her mum and sister were unfazed and would not be put off! Once Bex was in she looked absolutely radiant. We brought her downstairs to show all her bridesmaids how incredible she looked, and then we let her dad come in and see her as well. This is always such a lovely moment and such a special part of the day to be able to share.


Then it was ceremony time so Simon and I headed over to the main building to get in place at the top of the aisle to see the bridesmaids and Bex make their entrance. I loved the way the ceremony room was set up with beautiful flowers by Emily from Blossem Flowers who I’d not worked with before but highly recommend! I also couldn’t believe that Bex had done all the stationery herself, it looked absolutely stunning and I of course loved the bunny theme having two rabbits at home myself! Guests were seated and then it was time for the ceremony to start.

It’s a lovely long aisle at Priory Cottages because you walk up the stairs, down one set of chairs all the way around the balcony and then down the second set of chairs to the end of the aisle. This is great because it means loads of time for shots of everybody walking down the aisle, inclduing all the bridesmaids and then of course Bex and her dad. The ceremony was lovely; I especially loved the poem that Bex’s mum had written and read out for them.


Bex and John were pronounced husband and wife, they signed their official documents, and then it was back all the way along the aisle and downstairs for confetti. I love how they do confetti at Priory Cottages because the bride and groom stand downstairs whilst their friends and family gather along the balcony upstairs, and throw the confetti down to the bride and groom. This is great firstly because you can do it no matter what the weather, and also because the confetti has further to fall which means more opportunity for loads of photos.


Everyone else came downstairs then and it was time for the drinks reception. Sara’s sister had arranged for two llamas to join us for the wedding reception because she knows what an animal lover Bex is! So they were there when everyone got outside. It was lovely to see how happy Bex was and how much she enjoyed feeding and stroking them, whilst chatting to the owners about them. I got loads of candid shots of everyone with the llamas, but also congratulating the happy couple, enjoying some delicious looking canapés by Homegrown Hospitality, and generally just having an amazing time. And probably being quite surprised that they could be outside and have a drinks reception in the courtyard at the end of October!

We whipped through some group photos of Bex & John’s immediate families and their bridesmaids and groomsmen, and then Simon and I took Bex & John for a little wander around the grounds to get some shots of the the two of them. I always love the iconic arched doorway at Priory Cottages – it’s a must for wedding photos with the bride and groom! I also love that it’s just surrounded by open fields so you can wander down the lane and get some shots in the countryside. There were sheep in the field which again was great for animal lover Bex! We got loads of great pictures of them just having a wander and a chat, before making our way back to join everybody else in the main courtyard.

The rest of the drinks deception was spent capturing candid shots of Bex & John with their friends and family, and then I also nipped inside the marquee to see everything set up for the wedding breakfast. Again Blossem had done a fabulous job on the flowers and Bex herself had done amazing things with the stationery, the place settings, and the cake decorations. She had found some beautiful twigs which she draped with faux leaves and suspended from the ceiling. She had made a tiny little gold bunny rabbit holders for everybody’s place name. She had done the menus, the table names, and the dried flowers on the place settings. Incredible! I can’t imagine how long it must have taken her!


Before long people were called to take their seats and then Bex and John were announced into the marquee. Speeches were up first and were fantastic! Bex’s dad was really funny, but also managed to draw a few tears from her and her family. John again was really funny but also made a really heartfelt and touching speech. And then Bex’s sister and the best man did their speeches. They were both hilarious; some of the funniest of 2023 for me I’d say! Then it was time for food so Simon and I went to backup our pictures and video, grab something to eat ourselves, and wait for the party to start.


Bex and John wanted to do some sparkler photos which I always love in autumn/winter as it always gets me really excited for bonfire night which I enjoy even though I am a full grown adult! Sparkler shots can be a bit hit or miss; it usually depends firstly on how long your sparklers are, and secondly on how keen your guests are to get involved! Luckily Bex and John’s friends and family were all fully invested in sparklers! We got almost everybody outside and Bex’s sister (a teacher, very handy) was brilliant at rounding them up, lining them up, and shouting out instructions. We had quite a few lighters which always helps as well, so we managed to get them all lit in record time and then lined everybody up either side of the patio outside the main doors. Bex and John wandered down in between all the sparklers which were forming an archway above their heads. There were so many and they were the nice long ones, so they lasted quite a while meaning Bex & John could get all the way down and all the way back up, and then part way back down again so we got loads of great photos and video!

It was back inside then to wait for the band to finish setting up so that the real party could start. Bex and John nailed their first dance with plenty of twists and spins, and it was so lovely to see you Bex’s dad singing their first dance song and playing guitar. Not something I’ve seen before and it was a really memorable moment. Then the band kicked off and everybody just crowded around Bex and John – the dance floor was heaving (just how I like it!) and I got so many fab party pictures.

Thanks Bex & John for trusting me to capture your wedding, and for making it such a hoot!

Looking for a photographer for your Priory Cottages wedding? Please contact me and tell me more!

Venue: @priory_cottages
Videographer: @simonmanning_weddingvideo
Florist: @blossem_yorkshire
Make up & hair: @facesbylaurenrippin
Cake: @theflamingobakery
Dress: @bee.bridal
Venue styling: the bride and @somethingnew_wp
Caterer: @homegrownhospitality

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    Oh, hey!I'm Laura.






    I live near Ilkley with my slightly* nutty 9 year old Rose, and I have had the honour of photographing weddings and families for 11 years now. I genuinely cannot believe how lucky I am that I get to call this my job.

    *she once told me that traffic lights are the bane of her life, and she went through a phase of naming everything "Cantameen". Send help!

    I love photographing people. Whether it's your wedding day, you're expecting or have just had a baby, or you simply want to capture your loved ones the way they are right now, my aim is to document unique moments in time to create a beautiful set of images that you will treasure for many years to come. My style combines photojournalism with beautiful portraits, and my fun and relaxed approach makes you feel comfortable and at ease in front of the camera – I want you to actually enjoy having your photograph taken!

    Although I’m based near Ilkley I cover all of Yorkshire and I’m actually happy to travel anywhere for weddings and portrait shoots. So if you have any questions then please get in touch using one of my contact forms. In the meantime, grab a cuppa and browse through my wedding or portrait galleries, or take a look at my most recent work on the blog.

    I can't wait to hear from you x