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Real Weddings

Halfpenny London for a Black Tie Wedding at Charlton Hall – Cheri and Simon

04th December 2020 | Alexis Forsyth

Newlyweds Cheri and Simon fell in love with their venue, Charlton Hall, straightaway and didn’t even need to view anywhere else, as they knew this 18th century stately home would make the perfect backdrop to their spectacular day.

Tying the knot a year after their engagement, the couple took inspiration from their quirky surroundings and stylish attire to craft a stunning black-tie themed wedding. The details are exquisite – think ivory and soft nude hues complemented by gyp and pampas grass, and a glorious three-tiered cake decorated in ruffles. And with dishes such as oysters and Baileys parfait with truffles – their wedding breakfast sounds utterly delightful, too.

Come night-time, the couple’s homage to their favourite destination, Ibiza, took centre stage with not one but two DJs, plus a saxophone player, creating the perfect Ibizan sunset ambience for their guests in the heart of Northumberland. A truly unforgettable day, from start to finish.

Here’s Cheri to delve into their day some more and share all their special moments.

With images by Lee Scullion


Cheri says: Simon had taken me out to my favourite restaurant in Newcastle, The Patricia, for Sunday lunch. Afterward, we arrived home to a very romantic proposal of Simon on one knee whilst I was taking my shoes off in the entrance hall. It completely shocked me!


Our wedding took place on 22 February, 2020. We thought it would be nice to get married in February 2020, a year after our engagement, plus the date also contains my lucky numbers!

After walking into Charlton Hall in Northumberland, we knew it would be the perfect setting for a winter wedding, and it was the only venue we visited. We fell in love with it.

We have both been to many beautiful weddings and wanted to find somewhere different, so researched many venues around the local area and in other countries, too. Charlton Hall had been recently refurbished and was beautifully decorated – we felt that it had a great atmosphere and would be a fun place for a party. The views across the landscape were also stunning. It was the perfect place for us!


The theme centred around my wedding gown, which was called ‘Mayfair’ by Halfpenny London. A black-tie themed winter wedding felt appropriate with the setting, dress and party atmosphere we were looking to have. We also wanted our flowers to reflect an English country garden.



I bought my ‘‘Mayfair’ wedding dress by Halfpenny London from Marrime Bridalwear in Jesmond. I also had a second dress for the evening from the same designer and boutique, titled ‘Cheryl’.

After studying fashion design in London, a couture gown was a natural decision for me. Kate Halfpenny is a British designer, well known within the bridal industry and she’s made evening gowns for celebrities such as Kate Moss and Millie Mackintosh. I had seen the ‘Mayfair’ on Millie Mackintosh and the ‘Cheryl’ gown on Millie and also Cheryl Cole, and was keen to try both gowns on.

I visited Marrime several times before making my final decision. The store was amazing from start to finish and the girls at the boutique, including stylist Honey, really went above and beyond to make me feel special when visiting the boutique.

Both gowns were made especially for me – the ‘Mayfair’ was just perfect for the ceremony, as was the ‘Cheryl’ for the evening party. The bridal gown was worn with a cathedral length veil with pearl scatter and I paired the dress with freshwater pearl drop earrings from Soru Jewellery, and J’Adore shoes by Christian Dior.


Simon’s tuxedo was made to measure from Jules B in Jesmond and his Gucci shoes were bought from END.

Our page boys wore black velvet tuxedos with white Common Project leather sneakers from END.


My maid of honour, Honey, wore a Needle and Thread tulle layered nude pink floor length gown and my flower girl, Arabella, wore a Tutu Du Monde tulle nude pink embellished dress.


Anna Priadka, a close friend of mine, did my makeup on the day. Anna was amazing, she really put me at ease, made everything so simple and just knew what would look right.

Abbie at Nik Addis Hairdressing in Gosforth put all the girls’ hair up in the morning.


Lee Scullion captured our day. He had photographed me before, which made it a natural decision for me, and we both really liked his editorial fashion photography style. Lee made us feel so relaxed on the day, and not just us but our family and friends, too. Nothing was too much trouble, and we’d recommend Lee to anyone.

We also had a post-wedding shoot featuring beautiful images shot on Marsden Rock beach. Kate Halfpenny even reposted one of the images on her Instagram story.


We set out without a colour scheme, although we knew that we wanted ivory and soft nude/taupe roses. Once I had picked the gowns for my maid of honour and flower girl, the colour palette began from there.

Helen at Bels Flowers was amazing at visualising what we wanted with our floral arrangements. We had an English country garden theme with gyp, taupe ferns, alabaster, and pampas grass. Helen is a super talented lady and she worked so hard to pull everything together for our big day. We knew that we wanted the flowers to be our focus and she made it all so easy.

We searched all over for the perfect wedding stationary and found Jinny at Vine In The Wild through a friend who had used her for their wedding. Jinny’s stationery is beautiful, and she was great to deal with. She provided all the invites and wedding stationery on the day.


Dawn at The Master Cakesmith, who was recommended by our florist, handmade chocolate slabs for our guests which included milk, dark and white chocolate, decorated with gold leaf and edible flower petals.


Dawn also crafted our wedding cake. We visited Dawn on several occasions to eat cake – it was tough choosing our favourite flavours as there were so many delicious options. Dawn took our vision and made it a reality. We had a beautiful three-tiered ivory cake adorned with ruffles to match my gown, featuring layers of raspberry ripple, posh lemon, and chocolate Oreo.

Dawn also added some sweet treats to our cake table for our guests, which included chocolate brownies and donuts.


We had a selection of beautiful canapes with bubbly. This was followed by the main wedding breakfast, consisting of five courses. We offered our guests a choice ahead of the wedding day, and served everything from oysters, salmon and chicken, to lemon tart and Baileys parfait with chocolate truffles to finish. We also had red, rose and white wine to accompany the meal.

Charlton Hall offered us a full menu tasting session so that we could decide on the different options for our guests. Each dish was carefully selected, with us and our family and friends in mind.


We wanted an Ibizan sunset vibe for the evening entertainment. Simon and I have enjoyed many holidays in Ibiza as a couple, so we wanted to bring a bit of this to the wedding day.

Newcastle DJs Paul Thomas and Dan Stafford provided the tunes, along with Louise Evans on sax, as well as a percussionist and singer. We were over the moon with the music, everyone was up dancing and even now our friends and family speak of how much fun they had.

Pre-dinner, we also had a pianist play on the grand piano inside the main house. We requested a selection of modern songs whilst guests helped themselves to canapes and drinks.

Special touches

We asked our best friends, Joseph and Louise, to read special readings during the ceremony, picked out by me and Simon. We wanted to add a personal touch to the ceremony and have our close friends involved.

Thanks to

The venue was beautiful. From the moment we first walked in, to the day itself, there was no venue quite like it. The service was super and the food was delicious – it was such a fabulous choice. The setting amongst the countryside was beautiful and so romantic, and the views across the fields from the looking glass were simply unforgettable.

Best bit

Walking down the aisle and saying our vows was the best bit, even though I fluffed my words at one point! I could not wait to see Simon waiting at the end of the aisle.

Simon and his best men had a funny trick up their sleeves when it came to presenting the wedding ring. Our best man, Dave, produced Simon’s big gold diamante NFL ring instead, which he had bought for their trips to the NFL games. I burst out laughing with surprise and Lee snapped this moment in the photos – it was super!

We feel incredibly lucky and grateful to have been able to have all our friends and family with us on the day. It could not have been more memorable.


I think that most brides and grooms would say, don’t stress before your wedding. The day itself flashes by, so it’s important to make the most of every minute, take in as much as possible, and enjoy it.

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