Winter Wedding at Manor by the Lake in the Cotswolds

This Surrey Wedding photographer has been on her travels – but not too far just up to Cheltenham. The glorious golden honey stoned buildings of the Cotswolds are very lovely to photograph; the low light of Winter reflects off them in a beautiful way. And this intimate winter wedding took place on leap day at Manor by the Lake in the middle of the Cotswolds.  Originally known as Arle Court, the building has passed through private hands and then was sold to become Cheltenham Film Studios. It was acquired by the present owners in 2013 and following a multi-million pound project to restore it to it’s original grandeur, the Manor is now an exclusive use wedding and function venue. And I have to say that they have done a truly wonderful job.

view of manor by the lake  via the yew tree avenue

Bridal prep

We started the day in room one, it’s a stunning space with it’s silver canopied fourposter and roll top bath in the window, the thick white carpet and beautiful views make this an extremely luxurious bedroom.

the bride's navy blue dress hangs on the silver four poster bed,

The hairdresser was on hand to make the bride look gorgeous, she chose an up do with gypsophilia.

the hairdresser sprays the brides hair with hairspray


The bride chose a lovely bouquet of yellow freesia, white roses and blue eryngium. And as you’ll have noticed she didn’t go with the traditional white dress but a stunning two piece in navy blue.

The bride had several friends with her as she was getting ready and it was lovely to see their closeness and the laughter that they enjoyed together.

The Groom

Meanwhile the groom was downstairs welcoming the guests.

We did manage to get a few portraits of the groom before the ceremony.

The Ceremony

The ceremony took place in the Maximillian Room and the bride was escorted by her father. I love the groom’s expression as the bride walks down the aisle.

wedding service, with guests seated and the bride and groom sat at the register table

Immediately after the ceremony everyone went outside for the confetti photos.

the bride and groom grin at each other as they hold hands during the confetti

Couple photos

After some group photos, we took the couple off for 20 minutes of couple photos outside in the romantic grounds with the glorious backdrop of the Manor’s Elizabethan arches and tower. One of the first things that you notice about the garden is the outstanding topiary, but there are many different areas to the grounds; from the stunning lake and bridge, to the Italian walled garden.

 The guests had canapés and drinks in the hall whilst we did the couple photos. The interior of the building is equally as grand with the huge staircase, high ceilings and oak panelling. With only twenty-five people in the wedding party you might have expected it to be quiet but they were great people and cheered on their friends as they celebrated their day together. And although it is a large manor, the atmosphere was very homely, the couple had placed personal photos in each room and it felt very personal. It would be remiss of me not to mention that the beautiful wedding cake was made by the bridegroom – we were very impressed. 

The Wedding Breakfast

The wedding breakfast was also in the Maximillian room, which the staff had quickly turned around. It was a very intimate with lovely heartfelt speeches.

After the wedding Breakfast we took the couple outside for 10 minutes for some evening photos .

an evening image of the bride and groom looking at each other on the bridge, which is decorated with golden festoon lights

Are you getting married at Manor by the Lake?

I’d love to photograph your wedding. Please click here to get in touch with me & to check my availability. Or click here if you would like to see my portfolio.

Visit the Manor by the Lake website


Mercedes Evans Photographer