Congratulations Ashfield House!

Recently Ashfield House in Standish, Wigan was awarded the ‘Best Wedding Venue of the Year (Town or City) at the Wedding Industry Awards 2017. I feel very blessed that this stunning venue is on my doorstep and that I have had the absolute pleasure to document several weddings since I began the business.

My first wedding was back in 2011 and what a transformation it has gone through! I remember the dark oak furniture and large pillars in the dining area and bar, and the very classic looking wallpaper which together with the large golden frames created an elegant feel. Now following it’s renovation it is certainly a Luxury Country House in which offers a vintage/quirky theme throughout it’s corridors and rooms.

I thoroughly enjoy travelling the couple of miles up the road to photograph a wedding day here as it offers everything I need overlooking the Douglas Valley. There are stunning gardens with flowers that bloom throughout the year especially the lavender at the front which gives off a gorgeous scent.

A huge congratulations again! Here’s a recap of the weddings that I have been lucky enough to be part of over the years 🙂










Congratulations Scott & Hayley!

On Saturday I had the pleasure of being part of such a lovely couple’s wedding day at the stunning Ashfield House in Standish, Wigan.

I spoke with Hayley on the build up to the big day and we spoke about many things but one subject in particular…the weather! Now when it comes to the good old British weather you can never guarantee a specific outcome, you can only have a good look at some weather reports but mainly just cross you’re fingers and hope for the best.

As I woke on Saturday I knew it was going to be a glorious day as I saw a clear blue sky and frost settled on the ground. I packed my kit and headed up the road (literally 2 miles away) to Ashfield House and when I arrived I made my way up to the sitting room where Hayley and the Bridal party were getting their hair and make-up done. There were plenty of photos of Prosecco being drunk, pancakes being eaten and hair spray being…well sprayed as the ladies enjoyed the build up. I finished photographing the Brides beautiful wedding dress along with her shoes and flowers when it hit me that we had only 45 minutes to go before Hayley had to be downstairs. I left the room and headed downstairs to meet and greet Scott and the Groomsmen.

Whilst looking for the main man himself I came across Liz Hendry who is a good friend of mine and was to play the piano during the ceremony and wedding breakfast. After having a brief chat with Scott I left him to discuss official matters with the registrar as I documented guests arriving and having a chat.

Everyone was soon asked to head inside and take a seat as proceedings were not far away. I waited for Hayley to walk down the stairs with her father by her side as it does make for a lovely photo. Hayley smiled away as she saw Scott very smartly dress and eagerly waiting for his soon to be wife.

The ceremony was full of emotions and went by so quickly but I always make sure I document every moment as I know for 99% of couples it ends up complete blur. With vows said and rings exchanged it was time for them to sign the register to make it all official. The new Mr & Mrs Touhey made their way back down the aisle as husband and wife and with a glass of fizz in their hands they enjoyed a moment with their family and friends for the confetti throw.

We cracked on with the formal group shots as we lose the sun this time of year very quickly. I even advised we get some of the more intimate shots of them together outside especially as it would’ve been pitch black after the wedding breakfast and speeches. The venue’s grounds always offer a variety of areas to capture stunning photographs of the happy couple and Saturday was no exception.

There were 4 lovely speeches read by Hayley’s Dad, Scott, Scott’s Mother and of course not forgetting the best man! As always a mixture of tales and stories offering plenty of laughs and tears which made for great photos.

After the meal we managed to finish off with around 20-25 minutes of photos inside the bar area, on the stair case and upstairs. I then left them to it to enjoy the remaining hours with their wonderful family and friends. As the evening progressed with classic music being played by the DJ I set my gear up for the first dance.

The newly weds were officially introduced into the room to cut their wedding cake and then get close for the first dance as husband and wife. It was a lovely moment as their close family and friends watched them smile to one another whilst celebrating such a special occasion. I hope everyone thoroughly had a memorable day and I wish Scott and Hayley all the best in their married lives together

I also hope they enjoy every second on their honeymoon to Barbados and for the time being please enjoy a couple of these sneak peek previews 🙂



Luna the Old English Sheep Dog!

Hi all…

Okay so after a mad busy weekend I want to firstly share a couple of sneak peek shots from a more unique photo session I did just over a week ago with a furry little friend called Luna. Now I hope this brightens up your Monday because it certainly did for me 🙂

Luna is an Old English Sheepdog who is just a puppy and their owners who are good friends of my wife and I asked if I could capture some photographs of her whilst she’s…well small!

We traveled over from Wigan looking forward to meeting her and as we walked through the door there she was bouncing all over the place just like a new born lamb. I got straight into it taking some snaps around their beautiful home and as requested a few props with the iconic ‘Dulux’ paint tin along with Luna’s personalised paint brush 🙂

It was so much fun and I enjoyed every moment. So I hope you all too enjoy a couple of puppy pics and with Christmas just around the corner I’ve included a shot of Luna wearing something very festive!



Congratulations Martin & Anna!

Good friends of my wife and I Martin and Anna decided they wanted to tie the knot abroad under glorious sunshine and near the sea, so they flew out to Cyprus with close family and friends who witnessed them say their “I do’s”. We were keen to hear all about the wedding day but in the meantime we were looking forward to post celebrations at the reception!!

We offered a couple of hours of photography as a gift so they could get some formal/documented shots of the occasion with family and friends who couldn’t make it to the ceremony. My wife and I arrived at The Queen Elizabeth Hall along with those that the newly weds wanted in the formal group photographs. We got straight on with them and before everyone knew it the party had officially started!

I documented up until the first dance capturing the more intimate shots of Martin and Anna, a cake cutting shot and finally the first dance. It must have been great for Anna being able to get back into that beautiful white dress whilst Martin being suited and booted celebrating such a momentous occasion a second time. We are both very happy for the new Mr & Mrs McSorley and I’m sure along with their family and friends we wish them a lifetime of happiness 🙂

I hope you all enjoy the sneak peek shots and I look forward to sending the remainder to Martin and Anna soon!

Thanks… sam-sanders-photography-wigan-photographer-anna-martin-oldham-wedding-reception-web-024sam-sanders-photography-wigan-photographer-anna-martin-oldham-wedding-reception-web-027sam-sanders-photography-wigan-photographer-anna-martin-oldham-wedding-reception-web-060

Congratulations Mike & Kay!

Yesterday was the wedding of Mike and Kay of whom I hadn’t even met before the day and was a referral from two people. Kay contacted me a short while ago asking for my availability and after speaking with her about the 12 week wedding planning process she was happy to include me in the list of her chosen suppliers 🙂

I arrived at the Hallmark Best Western Fir Grove Hotel in Warrington for the bridal preparations where Kay and the girls were having their hair and make-up done. It was a lovely morning for them of fun and excitement towards what was to come. I captured all the smaller details as I always do before capturing the documentary shots. Time soon got away from me and after a couple of snaps of the dress being buttoned up I headed downstairs to greet Mike and speak briefly with the registrar.

Kay walked down the aisle with her brothers by her side and was lovely to see her beaming smile as she saw Mike. The ceremony was made even more special as Kay knew the registrar. It went smoothly with a beautiful reading read by a chosen member of the bridal party and after rings were exchanged and the register was signed it was time for the new Mr & Mrs to come together and get ready to walk hand-in-hand back down the aisle as husband and wife.

I cracked on with the formal group shots along with a brilliant confetti photograph outside in the courtyard where the ceremony had previously taken place. I then left the newly weds to mingle with their family and friends before heading into the wedding suite for a couple of snaps of the room decorated.

Everybody then made their way inside to take their seat before the wedding coordinator formally announced Mike and Kay back in. The head chef constructed an amazing master piece of a desert which they enjoyed immensely.

I prepped my gear ready for the speeches and with Mike and his son offering fab words of love, jokes and thanks the guests were finally introduced to their entertainment for the evening. Pier Fun Casinos and a magician were on hand to create a memorable time for everyone whilst I headed out with the happy couple to capture the more intimate shots of them together. Mike soon admitted that he wasn’t as keen as Kay on having a photographer for their big day but felt that I had helped offer a relaxing yet professional atmosphere which I obviously was made up with hearing 🙂

The first dance then soon arrived and after I sorted out the lights ready for an unusual introduction Mike, Kay and a couple of close family danced away in front of everyone. I hope they had an absolutely wonderful day and I wish them all the best in their married lives together.

Please enjoy these sneak peeks shots…


Congratulations Robert & Jane!

I love hearing where folks are getting married especially when I haven’t been there before! I was super excited when I met up with this lovely couple last year to talk about their big day whilst they looked through my work and wedding ‘storybook’ albums. They were pointed in my direction thanks to a good friend who I know through working as a volunteer with the Wigan Sea Cadets. After they decided to go ahead with myself I couldn’t wait to go and check out the venue 🙂

So I arrived early in the morning on the big day itself to greet Jane and capture the build up of the bridal preparations whilst getting those all important shots of the smaller details. It was lovely to meet everyone especially Frankie, the families gorgeous dachshund who was a complete poser in front of the camera. It was a fun atmosphere with plenty of laughs and jokes whilst the girls were having their hair done by a professional hair stylist. Before Jane got into her beautiful wedding dress I headed off to the wedding ceremony and met up with Rob.

I arrived at The Old Courts in the center of Wigan and after getting a couple of shots of the stunning exterior of the building I followed the guests as they headed inside. It wasn’t long to wait before Jane and the bridal party were arriving, and they did in style as a VW Camper Van turned around the corner. As they waited for the church bells to ring to signal 12pm I headed upstairs to get into position. Jane walked down with her mother who was to give her away. There were 2 lovely readings read and Rob and Jane even had their own vows for one another. The ceremony as always was beautiful and as soon as rings were exchanged and the mock photographs of the signing of the register was complete I prepped myself for the new Mr & Mrs Williams to walk hand-in-hand back down the aisle.

We headed outside to get a fantastic confetti shot before cracking on with the formal group photographs outside. I try and keep the formals as fun and relaxed as possible whilst getting through them quickly yet professionally.

Robert and Jane checked over the wedding breakfast room before heading back out again to formally be announced into the room. They were cheered on immensely from their wonderful family and friends and traditionally they kept the speeches until after the meal. Three lovely speeches were read by Jane’s sister, Robert and finally Robert’s brother and best man.

With the afternoon formalities complete everyone headed out of the room for it to be turned around by the staff at The Old Courts for the evening reception. I felt it was the perfect opportunity to head out and around the town with the newly weds to capture the more intimate shots of the together. They were absolutely brilliant and we captured some really unique and quirky shots!

It was soon time for me to prep my gear before the first dance. They had ‘Sonny & Cher – I got you babe’ which was a great choice of song although they admitted to me that it was  an unusual request from them as it wasn’t exactly to their tastes. It was a song they heard once and they decided at that exact moment that it was going to be the song of choice for the first dance.

I had an absolutely great time documenting the whole day and I hope the happy couple and their family and friends had a blast! I can’t wait to begin the editing of their wedding photographs but for the time being please enjoy a couple of sneak peeks to wet your appetite 🙂



Congratulations Matt & Helen!

I first met with this lovely couple last year after a referral from Mr & Mrs Fish who’s wedding I photographed back in 2014 at the iconic Bolton School. Matt was one of the ushers and after a good word was put in along with seeing my work from that day I guess it swayed Matt and Helen to contact me afterwards for a consultation to see what I could do for them. I was over the moon when they asked if I would be part of their big day and I couldn’t wait to get stuck in 🙂

There was a covering of thick fog at 10am as I traveled down the M58 heading towards Liverpool and through the Kingsway tunnel to arrive at my destination near Moreton on the Wirral. I photographed the bridal preparations before the ceremony which I absolutely love as it adds to the story of the day. I captured all the little details whilst even fixing Helen’s mum’s button hole, lol! Helen and the 2 bridesmaids were having their make-up done and once they were finished they had plenty of time to sip prosecco and enjoy the remaining hours before Helen became a Mrs 🙂

The morning flew and it was soon time for me to head off and meet up with Matt and the day guests. I arrived at a beautiful location which I have never been to before and one which I felt very privileged to be at. The Macdonald Craxton Wood Hotel & Spa was the venue of choice for both the ceremony and reception. I captured a couple of shots of guests arriving and Matt chatting to his best man before proceedings began. The bridal party arrived in style as a VW Camper van pulled up. After a couple of photographs I headed inside and placed myself at the front of the aisle in anticipation for the official arrival of the bride.

Helen looked stunning as she walked down the aisle smiling away with her brother in her arms who was honored in giving her away. They were both like Cheshire cats during the ceremony which made my life easy capturing them together with family and friends alongside witnessing the occasion. The whole ceremony was beautiful with a reading spoken by a chosen guest and as soon as the rings were exchanged and the register was signed it was time for the newly weds to walk back down the aisle as husband and wife.

Before ‘PoshPampaCampa’ headed off I captured some lovely shots of Matt and Helen inside and out of the retro motor. We then cracked on with the formal groups before a confetti shot at the front doors. Everybody enjoyed the glorious weather with a glass of fizz to compliment the occasion whilst on the lawn. I did my usual thing of hovering and documenting the natural shots.

Everybody soon headed inside for the speeches followed by the wedding breakfast. There were 3 wonderful speeches which started with Helen’s brother who offered a unique gift to Matt, although he was hesitant to handle it as it was a Wigan/Liverpool scarf. The main man himself, Matt who thanked people and then finally Matt’s best man who enjoyed sharing a couple of funny stories 🙂

Just before the evening guests started to arrive myself and the happy couple made our way around the venue’s gorgeous grounds for the more intimate shots of them together. I scouted a couple of locations before hand ensuring the lighting was right. We had fun as we chatted about the next important thing to happen in their lives…the Honeymoon!! 🙂

The day soon turned to night and so I prepped my gear ready for the upcoming first dance. They had ‘Love’ letters to light the way as they made their way onto the dance floor! I enjoyed walking around getting different angles and as soon as it was over I tried out some quirky shots with my flashgun as the classics kept on coming from ‘Event Services Direct’ who DJ’d for the night.

I had so much fun documenting it all and I can’t wait to get the finished product to them both in the upcoming weeks. I hope they have a fab time away in Greece and I wish them all the best in their married lives together.

For the time being please enjoy these sneak peek shots from yesterday…



Congratulations Daniel & Jenna!

Another wedding under my belt! Today I was local to home documenting the lovely wedding of Daniel and Jenna. We met last year to talk over the details of their day whilst looking through my portfolio and albums. They loved my work and asked if I would be part of their big day, I was already excited!

So at 2pm I arrived in good time to document the build up before the ceremony began. The church was ‘The Parish Church of Saint Thomas the Martyr Upholland’ and the building was absolutely breathtaking inside and out. Daniel and most of the guests were having a couple of drinks and a bite to eat at the White Lion across the road before the special occasion kicked off. Jenna soon arrived in a red classic double decker bus along with the bridal party as the remainder of the friends and family made their way to their seats. I captured a couple of shots before I took my place at the front near Daniel and his best-man.

Jenna walked down the aisle with her dad and they were smiling away. The happy couple were then soon reunited and saying those all important vows to each other. There were lovely readings spoken by chosen guests and rings were exchanged. A final blessing was done before they signed the register to seal the deal as they were husband and wife. I made my way to the back of the church as they walked back down the aisle hand-in-hand.

Everyone headed onto the bus to begin the 20 minute journey to Heskin Hall which was the reception venue where the afternoon celebrations were to take place. As they all arrived at the stunning Lancashire wedding venue I arranged them at the entrance to the building to conduct the confetti shot and then around the rear for the formal group photographs. It didn’t take too long and the newly weds even enjoyed a little time with their family and friends before the wedding breakfast.

There wasn’t any speeches and instead Daniel and Jenna asked the wedding coordinator to say a few words on their behalf. Afterwards we headed outside to have a walk around the venue to capture the more intimate shots of them two together. They said they weren’t that good in front of the camera but actually it turned out that they were absolutely fine. I try and keep it as informal and relaxed as possible whilst smiling a lot…obviously without looking like a right weirdo 🙂

The weather was just perfect offering the best conditions available when it comes to a couple’s wedding day. The first dance soon arrived as they took to the dance floor for the first time as Mr & Mrs Gallagher. I hope they had such a memorable day and I wish them both all the happiness in the world. I also hope they have a wonderful time in Rome on their honeymoon 🙂

Please enjoy a small selection from their big day before the remainder are uploaded at a later date…



Congratulations Tony & Anna!

I had an absolute enjoyable time yesterday documenting this really lovely couple’s wedding day. I met Tony & Anna a little while ago at their home in Skelmersdale after they enquired about my mid-week package. They loved my work and eventually invited me to be photograph their day.

It all started for me half an hour before the ceremony began as Tony was waiting with his daughter and son at the entrance of Ormskirk registry office. Their guests soon arrived as Tony was speaking with the registrar to confirm all the last details. Anna was waiting around the corner with her father and bridesmaid so I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to get a couple of formal snaps. I soon took my place at the front of the ceremony room as Tony was anxiously awaiting his beautiful bride to walk down the aisle. The occasion got to Tony and some of the lovely family and friends who needed a good amount of tissues on hand to fight back them tears. It was lovely to see but there were plenty of smiles on offer too 🙂

The ceremony went so quick and as soon as the rings were exchanged and the register was signed it was that all important time for the newly weds to make their way back up the aisle together hand in hand and smile for the cameras.

I set up the confetti shot outside at the entrance of the building and then went straight into the formal group photos which were fun. Afterwards me and the new Mr & Mrs Brown had a little walk around the building where we captured some of the more intimate shots of them before heading to the reception venue to carry on the celebrations.

We arrived at the Toby Carvery just around the corner from the registry office where Tony, Anna and their family and friends were to enjoy the remainder of the afternoon having a wonderful time. I left after I documented a short period of general chit chat and some lovely words from their fathers and obviously the main man himself, Tony!

I thoroughly enjoyed myself photographing such an important day in their lives and I can’t wait to edit the rest. For now please enjoy these sneak peek shots and I wish the happy couple all the best in their married lives together and I hope they have an amazing time on honeymoon 🙂


Congratulations Gary & Jacki!

Yesterday I had the absolute pleasure of documenting yet another mid-week and very intimate wedding. Gary and Jacki contacted me a couple of months ago regarding their big day and explained that it was only going to be a very small occasion with less than 15 close family and friends attending. I was made up after speaking with them and I couldn’t wait to be part of it 🙂

So I arrived around 11.30am at St Helens Registry office to document the build up and capture a couple of shots of the building and it’s surroundings. Gary and Jacki arrived in a very swish classic bus together along with a few of their guests. The registrar’s did what they needed to do before proceedings began but I headed inside and prepped my gear ready and waiting.

Gary was sat next to his brother’s who were offering him words of wisdom…or just general friendly banter whilst he eagerly awaited the arrival of his bride. Jacki soon made an appearance and walked down the aisle. It was a lovely ceremony with plenty of smiles (which I love to see!) and the happy couple even previously wrote and then read personal vows to one another. After rings were exchanged and the register was signed they danced their way down the aisle as husband and wife.

Before everyone headed off I photographed the all important confetti shot, formal groups and a couple of the more intimate shots of Gary and Jacki together. The weather was absolutely stunning so nobody was in a rush to head off 🙂

The next location was a lovely little Italian restaurant around the corner called Larkins’. They had a table reserved in the Tower room which was beautiful and for the remainder of the afternoon this is where they were all going to celebrate the occasion. I documented plenty of chit chat, laughter and exchange of gifts before I soon said my goodbyes and left them all to enjoy their food.

It was great meeting them and their lovely family and friends and I wish them all the best in their newly married lives together. I will be uploading their wedding day photographs in the upcoming weeks but for now please enjoy a couple of sneak peeks 🙂