July 10th, a Weekend away from my Camera.


I started getting wedding enquiries for July 10th weekend a year ago, for Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Very unfortunately for everyone that phoned, this was to be the weekend celebration of my best friend’s 40th birthday, and it was one party I was not prepared to miss.

We set off for Lulworth Cove on the friday in my (cue nerd excitement levels rising) new wagon, the sun was shining and Ali let me choose the music. I know! It was a very well kept surprise party, and logistically getting 23 people into a little hotel in a tiny Dorset village, without Birthday Boy spotting us, was a task and a half – but we managed it following three hours of furious texting by the girls.

As a group of friends, we hadn’t been together without kids for 7 years, and emotions ran high all weekend, which just went from fantastic to better than fantastic with every moment that passed. Okay we’re not 18 any more, but it felt like we were.

The hotel, The Beach House in Lulworth Cove was the perfect venue, and our hosts Philip and Lisl couldn’t have been more accommodating. We spent Saturday morning on the beach at Durdle Door, and came back to find that they had whipped up the most incredible seafood barbecue for us on the deck at the hotel. Then Philip invited us to spend the rest of the day using his private pool which sits up on the cliff looking down over the cove. “Oh, and do you have an iPod?” says he, “There are some speakers up there too…”

So it was one of the more Rock n Roll afternoons of my life, music booming, beer disappearing, Pimms growing on trees, a strangely rulefree waterpolo type competition kicking off in the pool, all my greatest friends, and yes….I did take pictures.

As the sun went down we scrubbed up and had a champagne reception back on the deck, followed by a night of speeches, seafood, wine and lots of chocolate desserts, all culminating in a very messy breakdancing extravaganza…average age of about 38….oops. I was not partaking in this of course, as I was busy photographing the ‘caterpillars’ and the headspinning, but also I have a responsible job,  am 42, and certainly can’t breakdance.

So a weekend away from my camera? Nope. But I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Here’s a slideshow, for anybody remotely interested in what I did when I should have been working on the weekend of July 10th. Probably completely inappropriate to post it here, but hey, you’re only young once. Oh the irony 🙂

A massive thanks to Philip and Lisl for pulling out all the stops at the Worlds Greatest Reunion.

Finally, I’m not sure how it happened, but we were playing the Glee sound track at about 3am. Thus the last song on the slideshow. It’s not there because I like it, honest.