On the first anniversary of their journey together, he surprised her with a ride in a hot air balloon at the world famous Bill Harrop’s. Edrei was of course BLOWN away, Malcolm sure proved that he wasn’t full of hot air! They enjoyed it so much that they couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate their wedding. And so they decided to elope – a big wedding would have been a bit impractical under the circumstances.

We started at Budmarsh, early – at 4am to be precise. A girl needs time to get ready after all and we needed to be at Harrop’s by dawn. The basket hosted 6 people plus the pilot, so Edrei decided to invite Malcolm’s sister Larnie and her hairdresser Nigel along for the ride (a girl needs a hairdresser close by at such altitudes!). Taking photos in the basket proved a bit challenging since we were all literally standing on top of each other. But as the sun came up behind them, I managed to get beautiful images with just the right amount of flare. As I was contemplating how I could get up to higher vantage point to also get the beautiful landscape behind them, I suddenly realised just how high up we were and the idea of tumbling out with camera going first wasn’t all that appealing. The ceremony was quite unique not only because the vicar was a real funny guy with fascinating stories, but also because he could only speak for about two minutes at a time before Bill Harrop (another fascinating guy!) had to pull the lever to release the hot air into the balloon. Edrei said afterwards that it gave her time to really take in the message instead of it going over your head because things normally happen so fast. It was a fascinating experience and one I am very grateful to have been a part of. I would definitely like to repeat the experience.

After the balloon trip we had a wonderful breakfast at Harrop’s and then it was back to Budmarsh where we did the couple shoot in their beautiful garden that is dressed in spectacular Autumn colours at the moment. Thank you Edrei and Malcolm for choosing me as your photographer to capture this unique and special occasion. I hope the journey ahead of you will be as colourful and exciting as this day and that you will sail through the ups and downs with ease. All the best!

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Thank you to James Dekker who took this image while we were lifting off:

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