Wedding photography at Cockington Church, with the reception at the Livermead Cliff Hotel, Torquay, Devon.

There is something special about Cockington Church in Torquay. The surroundings and the history make it a lovely place to have a wedding. Let’s see how the wedding photography went…

I clearly remember the first time I went to Cockington Church to photograph my first wedding there. When it’s empty and no lights on it felt so very different to the incredible atmosphere of a wedding ceremony.

If you visit the church and you’re thinking of having your wedding there, but the lights aren’t on, please don’t let it put you off! The location really does come alive during the ceremony!

The day started at the Livermead Cliff Hotel in Torquay, Devon. I’m not going to lie. I’ve been there before to meet friends and the hotel bar felt quite dark and dated. The good news is that the wedding receptions are not held there and when you’re led down to the reception room all that worry changes instantly!

The reception room is light and airy. Glass doors and windows follow the sea views all the way around. It’s a really light, welcoming and relaxed room to have your wedding reception. I really enjoyed photographing the wedding there and I hope I get another chance again soon.

Let’s look at some example photos…

The staff at the reception were all super friendly and the service was really good! The bar in the reception had a good collection of drinks and the toilets were really clean and bright. I’d have no problems having my own wedding reception there!

At Cockington, I was so happy to see Vicor Chris again. She is a lovely warm and kind lady and she is always super nice to me. She knew I’d photographed her service there before so she said she didn’t need to tell me again what I can and can’t do.

As a side note, after the ceremony and while I was waiting for the Cockington horse and wedding carriage to arrive, she pulled up to me as she was leaving. I asked for feedback and it was lovely to have such kind words and such lovely feedback. I never know if I did as I promised so I am glad for the feedback confirming she had no issues at all.

Wedding Photography Chat

The church is a place where you just let the ISO be where it needs to be. Depending on the view in front of me, my ISO ranged from 400 to 6,400. With modern cameras, even 12,000+ ISO isn’t really an issue so I had no problem at all shooting in those ISO ranges.

I didn’t use flash and switched to silent shooting so I didn’t interfere with any part of the ceremony.

Vicor Chris adds her own special touch to a ceremony. I knew it was coming but it was so sweet of one of the church helpers to tap me on my shoulder to tell me what was about to happen. If you read this… thank you anyway!

This was the very last wedding that involved Kirk and the Cockington Carriages. He very politely asked if I could take a few photos of them with their horses which I was more than happy to do. It’s a sad time for Cockington!

The reception room at the Livermead Cliff Hotel has a couple of darker parts of the room. I put a couple of lights in those two spots to bounce some light back into the scene to even everything out. There was no banding issue or white balance problems there.

Equipment for the day was:

  • 2 x Sony A9
  • 85mm F1.4 GM
  • 24mm F1.4 GM
  • Godox AD600 Pro
  • 2 x Godox AD200
  • 1 x Godox V1
  • 1 x XPro trigger (destroyed)

Just a minute or two before the end of my day, as the first dance was finishing, the impossible happened! I have a dual-camera harness, this one…

Somehow the strap on the second camera unbuckled itself. Bear in mind, this strap is pulled tight by the weight of the camera and flash, so what happened can’t happen… My camera, lens and trigger slipped off the unbuckling strap and crashed to the floor. I saw bits flying all over the dance floor. I did what I knew I had to do; continue shooting the first dance with my other camera while my second photographer picked up the pieces off the floor.

Thankfully (I guess) the trigger took the full force of the landing and smashed into pieces. I’ve been using this strap for years and I’ve never had a problem before. I’ve now glued and zip-tied the strap into place. That will never happen again.

I still got the shots though 😉

This is why having at least two camera bodies is so important!

Need a wedding photographer? Let’s have a chat (Preferably over a lovely coffee!)

Simon Day

If you have a wedding, portrait, event or festival coming up please contact me. Likewise for portraits. Check out my social media channels: Instagram | Facebook | Twitter