I&L | July 2019

The Couple: Ian & Melissa (Liss)

Length of Engagement: 1 year

Where it started…

I was manager of a women’s football team. Liss came along to join us for a training session with a view to potentially joining the team. My initial thoughts were that she was very attractive and seemed like a really nice girl. She wasn’t too bad at football either!

Our first date was on 29th July 2015 (four years to the day before we got married!).

Popping the question…

We got engaged on 28th December 2017 when Ian proposed at Mupe Bay in Dorset.

We had been to the Lulworth coast several times, it is a very special place to us. Getting to Mupe Bay required a significant walk along the beach at Lulworth Cove, a climb to the top of the cliffs and a stroll along the cliff tops. I was constantly checking my pocket to ensure I still had the ring.

We sat for a while on the cliff top overlooking Mupe Bay. When I eventually popped the question Liss’ response was to cry. She cried for so long I had to wait and re-ask her the question…!

The Barns…

Before you find a venue for your wedding, people will often tell you that ‘you will know it when you see it’.

That was true of us and The Barn at Upcote. We knew from the moment we stood at the top of the steps leading down to the quad that Upcote was the place for us. Having seen a number of prospective venues prior to visiting Upcote we didn’t go to any more after that visit.

Deciding upon The Barns was easy; the gorgeous buildings, stunning surroundings and the fantastic staff. The staff at Upcote were always wonderfully helpful, patient and accommodating. Nothing was ever too much trouble and they always made us feel that it was our wedding day and we could have the wedding we wanted.

Describe the venue in three words:

  1. Perfect
  2. Perfect
  3. Perfect

Memorable moments…

Seeing Liss for the first time as she walked down the steps, having my children – Mollie (13), Elizabeth (11), who were both bridesmaids, and my little best man, William (10) – there looking so gorgeous and being so fantastic.

The ‘Singing Waiters’ were a really wonderful surprise! Liss booked the ‘Singing Waiters’ as a surprise for me, who performed at the end of the wedding breakfast.

All the staff at Upcote were extraordinary, not just on the day, but throughout the whole process.

Our photographer, Katie Whitburn, Still Light Photography, was an absolute star.

The whole day was the most wonderful experience.


We went to Northern Italy; Milan, Lake Garda, Verona, Venice and Lugano and onto Switzerland. It was amazing! We had the most wonderful time. Such magical, beautiful places.

Liss insists it was only a ‘mini-moon’ because it wasn’t the Maldives!

Advice for other couples…

Pick a venue that will allow you to have and provide for you the wedding you want, not the one they want!

Enjoy every second all the planning, prep and, of course, the day itself.


Photographer                       Still Light Photography, Katie Whitburn

Entertainment                      Nero String Quartet, ‘Singing Waiters’

DJ                                           Deckstar Deluxe

Catering                                 McBaile

Magician                                Mark Willis – Magic by Mark

Cake                                       The Cupcake Fairy