Meet the stars of the latest Real Life Bride series…
The Groom – Matty Thompson, Home Improvements Manager
The Bride – Olivia McCourt (now Thompson!), Assistant Principal / Teacher of English
How did you meet?
We met 9 years ago when I was out in Sunderland with friends. Matty had been to a football do and after winning a game of ‘Heads or Tails’ decided to continue his night in town. The first bar my friends and I went into, Matty happened to be in there – the rest is history! We did, however, have mutual friends which we did not realise!
Tell us about the proposal
Matty proposed when we were on holiday in Spain, August 2017. We had had a lovely day relaxing in the sun followed by a romantic meal early evening in our favourite restaurant. After dessert, Matty suggested we return to the villa – I was taking my time drinking fizz, not realising what Matty had planned when we returned! Once back at the villa, I decided to change into my pyjamas, much to Matty’s disgust – he knew I’d want to be dressed in something more appropriate for the proposal! As I walked out onto the poolside, I saw Matty sitting looking quite anxious. Candles were lit and champagne was cooling on ice. Seconds later, Matty moved away the chair he was sitting on and got down one knee and produced a black box. As he spoke the words “Will you marry me?”, I was blubbering “is that ring for me, is it really mine?” Obviously, it was mine and I yelled a huge YES to his question once I had stopped crying!
Why did you choose Seaham Hall?
Why not?! It ticked every box. We wanted a luxurious and exquisite venue to celebrate our special day. We loved the idea of the “exclusive use” wedding experience for ourselves, friends and family. Every time we visited Seaham Hall prior to our wedding day, we knew we had made the right decision – staff, service and surroundings, simply perfect.
What was the theme?
Rustic / autumnal – blush pink, green, rose gold and hessian.
Tell us about the dress?
My dress was purchased from Brides Dream, Newcastle. It was a stunning Ronald Joyce dress, ‘Audrey’ was the style. It had an attractive lace dropped waist bodice with a boat neckline and plunge back on a soft pleated Mikado skirt with Mikado waistband. As soon as I tried it on, I knew it was the one, as they say, it was ‘my dream dress’. Coincidentally, my mum’s name is Audrey, which made my dress even more special.
What is your favourite part of Seaham Hall?
We loved the unique style and character of each bedroom. The ballroom was flooded with natural light and a gentle, welcoming ambiance. The staff were always very friendly and attentive whenever we visited but especially on our wedding day, nothing was ever a bother to them. The surroundings are dramatic and the ruggedness of the coastline adds to the mystique and uniqueness of the setting.
Where did you choose to hold your ceremony?
St Joseph’s Catholic Church, Sunderland.
How did you feel?
As I walked into church linking my dad, Tony, I felt honoured to be surrounded by all our family and friends. The nuptial mass was concelebrated by the Reverend Fathers Michael McCoy and Jonathan Rose.
What music did you walk down the aisle too; does it have a special meaning?
Pachelbel’s Canon in D major. Another family member had used it for their wedding, it holds lots of memories for us all.
Venue – Seaham Hall
Photographer – Scott Spock Photographer (Scott, Korinne and Phil)
Bridal Gown – Brides Dream, Newcastle
Bridesmaid dresses – ASOS wedding
Flower girls dresses – M&S
Page Boy suit – John Lewis
Men’s Suits – Woven Durham
Beauty – Just Be, Sunderland
Hair – S.I Haidressing
Bridal hair extensions – Jo Fox using Great Lengths
Flowers supplied by – Ashbrooke Florist
Cars – Delahaye and Bentley – Richard Thomson and Volvo XC90 supplied by Mill Volvo, Newcastle
Chair Dressing – Seaham Hall
Table decoration – Olivia’s sister, Joscelin and friend, Amber
Caricature – Barrie James Art
Choir – Songbirds
Explore our amazing wedding offerings and keep your eyes peeled for next weeks Real Life Bride instalment!