Poynton couple celebrate Golden Jubilee at Capesthorne Hall

A Poynton couple who were the first to enjoy a wedding reception at Capesthorne Hall have returned 50 years later

Fifty years ago Beryl and Eddie Hobbs made history at Capesthorne Hall near Alderley Edge.

They were the first bride and groom to have their wedding reception there. It was all because of a mix-up at Chelford Parish Hall.

‘That’s where we were going to hold it,’ says Beryl. ‘But we couldn’t get the place ready in time because they were having a jumble sale that weekend.’So the bride and her father - who kept Chelford Post Office – mentioned their predicament as they delivered groceries to the Capesthorne Hall cook. Beryl recalls: ‘They said they would open up especially for us and we could have the reception there.’

Now the couple, who celebrated their golden wedding in March, returned to Capesthorne for the first time, for afternoon tea in the same lakeside room.‘There’s a big difference now,’ said Beryl, a 74 year-old former voluntary worker, as she saw where 60 friends and family had gathered 50 years ago after the wedding at Chelford Church. ‘The room has been transformed into a beautiful space overlooking the lake and formal gardens.

‘It was a lovely reception on a lovely sunny day. I can remember going up the drive to the house and we had photographs taken in the garden. Everyone was so impressed – especially when Sir Walter and Lady Bromley-Davenport dropped by to congratulate us.’

The return visit was a double celebration that also marked Eddie’s 78th birthday. The retired design engineer and his wife, who now have three children and four grandchildren, travelled from their home in Parklands Way, Poynton, where they settled as newlyweds.

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History repeated itself as the present Sir William and Lady Bromley-Davenport called in to say ‘happy anniversary’.

‘I believe we were the first people ever to have their wedding reception at Capesthorne Hall,’ says Beryl. ‘We haven‘t been back since but we couldn’t let our 50th anniversary go by without a return visit.’

And, says the hall manager Christine Mountney: ‘We are so glad they did.

Things have become very different here during our 50 years of weddings.‘Then you could only hold a reception here because churches and register offices were the only places you could marry.

‘Now we have been licensed for civil ceremonies for some time and last year we held our first outside ceremony at the gazebo on the edge of the lake.

‘Capesthorne is one of Cheshire’s most romantic wedding venues … and Beryl and Eddie were there at the very start,’ she said.