Reportage wedding photography at Lord’s cricket ground
Lord’s cricket ground, in London – the spiritual home of the sport. The sport that can go on for days, with no result. Hard to get more ‘English’ than here – well, a certain kind of English. The pavilion refers back to a bygone era. A Gentlemans club beside a cricket pitch – a building with history pouring out of every brick. The location for Ben (a cricket nut and announcer/commentator for Middlesex county cricket club), to marry his American bride, Jessica.
Coverage starts with Jessica getting ready, with some friends, in the home dressing room – the England dressing room. A pretty spartan room, apart from the wooden boards, high on the walls, denoting past great cricketing achievements at Lord’s – largest batting scores, best bowling figures, etc. Some very famous cricketers never made this roll of honour. A famous balcony too, for any cricket fan. Many an English schoolboy, keen on cricket, has pictured themselves sat there. Outside the groundstaff were working away on the pitch, ahead of the Test match against the West Indies. Including a very noisy, squeaky lawnmower, in real need of some WD-40. Downstairs, Ben was greeting the wedding guests in the famous Long Room – where the ceremony was to be held. For many years, the pavilion was a no women area (apart from staff and The Queen). It has it’s rules still. The dress code in the pavilion is notoriously strict. Men are required to wear “ties and tailored coats and acceptable trousers with appropriate shoes” and women are required to wear “dresses; or skirts or trousers worn with blouses, and appropriate shoes”
The Long Room at Lord’s (according to wikipedia)
“The Long Room, described as “The most evocative four walls in world cricket”, is a feature of the Pavilion, a room players walk through on their way from the dressing rooms to the middle. The walk from dressing room to cricket field at Lord’s is notoriously long and complex. On his Test debut in 1975, David Steele got lost “and ended up in the pavilion’s basement toilets”.
The Long Room is lined with paintings of famous cricketers and administrators, from the 18th century to the 21st. Members of MCC and their guests have free access to the room (there are windows with views of the ground) and will often greet Australian batsmen walking out to bat with “witticisms … like ‘See you soon'”. On this point, Australian Justin Langer, described walking through the Long Room like “being bearhugged by an invisible spirit”.”
Wedding ceremony in The Long Room
On this day – it was about a wedding. Jessica was escorted in by her father. The rings came in a cricket ball case (with an Australian ringbearer!) Rings on, marriage declared, hugs and applause, it was time for confetti on the Pavilion steps (no access to the pitch allowed!) Ben then snuck off to the PA system and – busman’s holiday – announced to the guests, through the ground’s speakers, that they were to make their way up to the bar on the top terrace, for the drinks reception. Meanwhile the Long Room was turned around for the meal.
As the starters were finished, the singing waiters began their act – fooling many at first and finishing off with Nessun Dorma, beside the top table. After the speeches it was time to head across to the modern Thomas Lord suite, next to the famous Grace gates – for the evening party.
Here are a few images from Jessica and Ben’s day at Lord’s……