What colour is love? Every colour, all around… Because nothing else matters when it’s love that you’ve found.”
Nevermoreso have the poetic words so beautifully read out at a wedding ceremony by the couple’s children been more apt.
The stunning marriage of former England international cricketer Ryan Sidebottom to stylist and events organiser Maddie was an abundance of colour.
Planned to the most exquisitely-small detail, there were shocking-pink flamingos, metallic-gold pineapples, mirrored disco balls, whacky props and extravagant finishes … even a life-size zebra was thrown into the eclectic mix.
Their spectacular decorations, tableware and floral displays worked perfectly against the quirkily-opulent backdrop of Northumberland’s stately home wedding venue Charlton Hall.
And for anyone who knows the happy couple, it was clear that every well thought out element of their breathtaking wedding was reflective of their crazy and unique personalities.
Maddie says: “My favourite quote comes from Alice in Wonderland – ‘You’re mad, bonkers, completely off your head. But I’ll tell you a secret. All the best people are.”
It pretty much sums us up, and our wedding day was exactly that, a little bit mad and bonkers, but the best day of our lives shared with those closest to us.”
A Meeting of Minds
Maddie first met Ryan at a celebratory cricket match she had organised in 2017.
Attracted to each other’s kooky personalities and joie de vivre, the pair fell madly in love and 2019 Dancing on Ice star Ryan proposed while on a Norwegian Fjord cruise, with letters read out by his two children Darley and Indiana and Maddie’s son Louis. The couple chose a 3.5 carat square cut diamond engagement ring.
Having both been married before, they had a strong sense of what was important on their big day, with their children playing a central role.
Maddie says: “We actually could be a little more selfish and have the wedding we wanted.
First time round we both spent a lot of time and money trying to please other people. This time we wanted our day to be all about our blended family of 5: our style, our sense of craziness, our celebration.”
The couple were fortunate enough to have been able to share their intimate March wedding with family and close friends before the country went into Lockdown.
Coronation Street star and fellow celebrity skater Jane Danson and her actor husband Robert Beck were among well-known guests, as well as some well-known cricketers, who were treated to an unforgettable day from start to finish.
Splendid in Savin
Maddie wowed in a Savin London Alika dress, with matching veil from Y.A.P bridal, a quintessentially British luxury bridal label, while her bridesmaids wore blush pink multi-way dresses from Norton bridal shop Christian Alexander.
Their hair was styled by Leanne of Get up & Pin up, and their make-up applied by Maddie’s friend and fellow bridesmaid, award-winning MUA Amanda Bell.
The couple were married in Charlton’s sparkling ceremony hall and emotions ran high as they exchanged their own personal vows.
Their children read what colour is love? by Linda Strachn and Maddie’s niece Hannah sang Bette Midler’s The Rose.
Ryan recalls: “Seeing Indi walk down the aisle, followed by Maddie looking so incredible, was the highlight of my whole day. Knowing our two families had become one meant everything to me.”
Colour Pop Styling & Celebrity Appearances
Celebrations continued inside the Hall with acoustic music by Jess Avison and Slingsby Gin reception drinks paired with Yorkshire Tonic’s.
The Looking Glass room had been dressed spectacularly with floral displays by The Whole SchBang and Balloonalicious interspersed with spray-painted flamingos, neon lights and balloons.
During the wedding breakfast, guests took part in a game of their take on Bongo’s Bingo (with pink fluffy unicorns amongst the prizes) and Maddie had arranged a special surprise for Ryan – a video montage of messages from celebrity friends including Robbie Williams, Brian McFadden, Alan Shearer, Piers Morgan, Phil Tufnell and Leigh Francis.
The Dance Off
As night fell, guests were prepared personalised cocktails at the Botanist cocktail bar, entertained with live music by House of Sax and had photos taken in the pink VW camper van booth from Birdie.
Maddie and Ryan amazed guests with a well-rehearsed first dance routine choreographed by Amy Walton and Kelly Ensbury at Urban Kaos.
Maddie says: “We wanted our evening celebrations to be just as spectacular as the day, to ensure that guests who arrived later on knew they were an equally special part of the occasion.”
The bride’s advice:
“Forget about trying to please everyone else and instead plan the wedding that you two really want. We kept our numbers down to share the weekend with those who we want to share the rest of our lives with,” says Maddie.
“Also make the absolute most of your time. We hired Charlton Hall for a full weekend of escapism and kicked off celebrations on the Friday evening with a private meal for 30 guests to mark my 40th birthday.
The morning after the wedding we planned a bucks fizz brunch. It was amazing to stretch the celebrations beyond that one day, and definitely worth it after months of planning!”
This eclectic, exciting bonanza is featured exclusively in the pretty pages of Belle Bridal AW20. See it in all its glory and order your copy online now.
The Botanist Group