Caroline met Danny in the last place she ever expected to meet anyone – at work! "We worked on different floors and never crossed paths, until one day I was asked to take notes for a senior manager in a disciplinary meeting," she says. "When I walked onto their floor, I saw a gorgeous man walking towards me – then he opened his mouth and his Yorkshire accent finished me off!
After the meeting Danny asked what my plans were for the weekend, and I got so flustered I waffled a lot of drivel. It couldn't have been that bad, though, as he asked me out the following week."
Danny proposed on a trip to the Lake District while celebrating Caroline's birthday.
"I'd been hopeful that Danny would ask me to marry him, but I didn't really think it would happen, as every time I thought he would he never did!" continues the bride. "There'd been numerous opportunities for him to propose, such as my 40th birthday trip to Venice, so I was pretty clueless that he was planning anything.
On my actual birthday, we climbed The Old Man of Coniston fell, and Danny had a backpack which he fussed over far too much. It was an exhausting hike, and when we eventually reached the top, I laid down to rest as I was so tired.
Danny asked me to sit up – before producing the most beautiful ring I've ever seen! He asked me to marry him, and after I said 'Yes!' he pulled out a mini bottle of prosecco and some plastic wine glasses from the backpack he'd been so precious about all day.
It was a beautiful and romantic moment – although I still wind him up that he didn't get down on one knee!" The couple set the date for the 9th May 2022, choosing Doxford Barns for their big day.
Here, Caroline tells us more about their amazing wedding...
Caroline couldn't sleep the night after they got engaged, as she was far too excited about getting married!
"While Danny slept, I searched up wedding venues online," she says. "I knew I wanted to get married in a barn and did a random search, and the first one that came up looked amazing – so I dropped them a message.
Doxford Barns replied the next day to say they had appointments free that week, so we visited on our way back from the Lakes.
The moment we walked into the Great Barn, with its festoon lights and dried hops hanging from rustic oak beams, we were blown away by how stunning it was.
The exclusivity of the venue, along with the stunning grounds and cottages to accommodate family and friends, was also a huge selling point.
We didn't want to see anything else – and booked our date right there and then!"
As Caroline and Danny had both been married before; "Danny three times – Ross Geller vibes!" – jokes the bride; they decided against a traditional full day wedding.
"Instead, we chose a later ceremony with a laid back informal meal afterwards. Danny was initially nervous about having the ceremony at half five in the afternoon – he thought it was too late and the day wouldn't be long enough.
As it turns out, it was the best decision we made!
As it turns out, it was the best decision we made!
The day flowed perfectly, and our guests had a fantastic time. They interacted with people they'd never met before, and some made great friends for that day and night with complete strangers – the free prosecco and beer may have had something to do with that!
Since the wedding, our guests have told us that it was the best celebration they have ever been to, and for us that's an amazing thing to hear."
When it came to flowers and decorations, Caroline had her heart set on artificial blooms for their day. “I wanted flowers I could keep after the wedding, so found a lovely boutique on Etsy who tailored them to our colour scheme.
They provided my bride and bridesmaid’s bouquets, as well as buttonholes. They looked so realistic that our guests couldn’t believe they were fake!
I also bought ivy garlands and intertwined them with rose gold fairy lights for the tables, arranging them around the table numbers which were placed on log slices with LED candles.”
While the garlands were meant purely for decoration, Danny's son, nine-year-old Reid, had other ideas.
"It was his first wedding, and he really did have the time of his life," laughs the bride.
"He made friends with one of Danny's mates, Mark – who's 40 going on five – and the two of them had a great time dancing together and messing about.
Later on in the night, Reid took the ivy and fairy light garlands from the tables and put them around his neck, running around the dance floor while high fiving everyone he passed.
This was funny enough on its own, but then Mark joined in on the action!
There they both were, chasing each around the room waving their arms about like lunatics – it really was the most hilarious sight!"
Having been previously married, Caroline wanted a gown completely different to her first wedding dress so as not to be 'reminded of my biggest mistake'.
"I didn't want anything too big, but didn't want fitted, either, so an A-line style seemed the best choice.
I must have visited a dozen bridal shops and tried on up to 30 different designs, ending up choosing a dress that the owner of the boutique, June, recommended.
I fell in love with the Maggie Sottero Savannah gown but wasn't sure about the train, so June suggested getting her seamstress to add some sparkles. It looked incredible and made the dress unique to me, which I accessorised with a simple necklace from Swarovski."
As the couple had only planned to have a small wedding – "which of course didn't end up this way!" says Caroline – the bride asked her 15-year-old daughter to be her bridesmaid.
"She wanted to choose her own dress and colour scheme, so I placed my total trust in her," she says.
"She found a beautiful strapless, sweetheart neckline blush dress from Morilee, and looked absolutely gorgeous."
Danny and his groomsmen also looked the part, choosing Fred Sirieix suits from Moss Bros. "Danny fell in love with the idea of having a checked suit, pairing it with a pale blush tie to match my daughter's dress," says Caroline.
"He wore the same style as his best man and my 19-year-old son, who walked me down the aisle.
I couldn't have been prouder of how gorgeous they looked.
Entertainment was an important part of the couple's wedding, to ensure their friends and family had the very best time.
"We knew live music would create a great atmosphere, so booked a band we'd seen before who had a great frontman," says Caroline.
"Unfortunately, a few months later we found out he was leaving the band, so set about finding a new one.
We found Highway 21 online, who played all sorts of genres, so wasted no time in booking them.
Our guests submitted song requests before the big day, so the band were able to deliver a unique personalised set for everyone.
They are unbelievably talented and were such a big hit on the night."
Caroline and Danny also wanted their celebrations to end in style, organising a fireworks display to wow their wedding party.
"We wanted it to be a surprise, so, once the sun went down, invited our guests into the courtyard for sparklers.
While everyone was distracted, our photographer led us down a side path and asked us to look over the field away from everyone.
At that moment, the speakers kicked in with, 'Ladies and gents, this is the moment you've waited for,' followed by the booming drums of The Greatest Show from The Greatest Showman.
Fireworks shot up into the sky from the field, and our guests screamed with excitement as we stood in awe watching the most fantastic display for a full six minutes. Afterwards, one of the wedding coordinators said it was the most spectacular display they'd ever seen – and our guests were blown away."
One of the best parts of the couple's big day was being introduced to everyone as the bride and groom.
"As everyone stood to welcome us, Sweet Caroline started to play," continues Caroline.
"We made our way on to the dancefloor and sang and danced along, encouraging everyone else to do the same. The song was special to Danny, as it's the theme song of his old rugby club.
In fact, not long after we got together, Danny was out in York with his team after a game and paid a busker to sing it to me. He filmed the entire thing on his phone and the whole team joined in.
This is just the kind of thing that I love about him. Obviously, it was also significant to me because it's my name! To be honest I'd hated the song for most of my life, because people used to sing it to me all the time, but I really embraced it on the day!"