Sibilla & Paolo | Pagan Wedding | Glastonbury Tor & Meare Manor | 29th July 2017
Travelling from Italy 10 years ago, teachers Sibilla and Paolo were taking their students on a school trip to Glastonbury. During a visit to Glastonbury Tor, Sibilla and Paolo set eyes on each other for the very first time. Standing on the energy line of the ancient Isle of Avalon during sunset, they held each other whilst the sun dispersed it’s pastel pink and red colours. It was here that Sibilla made a promise that if there should be a place on earth where her betrothed would marry her, it would be right here on the Tor. They chose to have a pagan wedding which is called a Hand Fasting. At the time of writing this, Pagan weddings are not currently classed as a legal marriage in England, but they are in Scotland. The reception was held at Meare Manor, in Meare, just a few miles outside of Glastonbury.
To even use the term “no ordinary wedding“, is an understatement. Travelling with Sibilla and Paolo were their 25 guests from Italy and 2 from Switzerland. Their wedding day plan was to have a morning out in Glastonbury; espresso, visit the Abbey, shopping at Haruka and then lunch at the Hawthorns Hotel. After lunch was a mass hair and make up session back at Meare Manor for the ladies. Creating the beauty magic was a team from The Beauty Spot, owned by Hannah Hoskin-Love. Hannah sent Genna, Elsie and Lauren who transformed the ladies.
Now not many people can say that their wedding was carried out by the Mayor. Emma George is from Pagan Wedding Planners based in Glastonbury and she became the Mayor of Glastonbury on the 11th of June 2017. I was honoured to be personally invited as a VIP on her Mayor’s Sunday. I have photographed many hand fasting for PWP in various venues such as Stonehenge and Kilve beach.
This hand fasting was literally in favour of the element of water. It did not rain, it poured it down. But Positive Paolo just kept smiling and holding Sibilla by the hand and she smiled back. Paolo wanted a British theme, which is why he wore a kilt, wanted pie and chips at the reception but I bet he did not expect the “typical English weather” to go with it? I often get asked what happens if it rains on a wedding day. Well the answer is simply “it is still your wedding day, let’s do this“. My cameras are water resistant and using a brollie, anything is possible.
The finale to a hand fasting is for the couple to jump over a broomstick called a Bessom. It signifies the newly-weds leaping into their future and new life together, leaving the past behind. This was one magical wedding for me and I will never forget the memories created for myself yet alone what I captured for Sibilla and Paolo. I also had a special gift for them from myself, I giant Italian flag…