Events, Fundraising News

Come and see us at The Big Day Wedding Show in February

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La Boutique Bridal Gowns @ The Big Day Wedding Show
Sunday 19th February 2019,
Plymouth Pavilions

You are invited to a fantastic event to celebrate the very best of the South West’s wedding community; a day dedicated to brides and grooms, their guests, and the perfect day you deserve to have. Don’t forget to book your tickets for The Big Day Wedding Show, held at the Plymouth Pavilions on February 19th.

Joining a host of other wonderful suppliers the staff and volunteers of La Boutique, a dedicated bridal boutique in Exeter, are excited to announce that they too will be heading to The Big Day Wedding Show next month – and cannot wait to meet the couples planning their nuptials. La Boutique is looking forward to showing you a sample of their stock, which includes many famous names, some incredible styles, and, above all, discounted dresses that you’ll adore – none of La Boutique’s gowns costs more than £500. The gowns, which have been donated by designers and boutiques, are brand new and ex-samples, range from sizes 6-24, and come in an array of styles to suit any bride’s tastes and look. At any one time the boutique stocks some 700 gowns, so there’s always plenty to look at, and try on.

La Boutique was established with the aim of raising money for its associated charity The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation, which organises and funds weddings for couples directly affected by terminal and life-limiting illnesses. During the show couples will have the chance to learn a little more about The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation, which is the event’s chosen charity, and to find out how they can help during their own big days; this is a unique opportunity to give a little back via your own special day.

Naomi Thomas, founder of The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation, and the lady at the helm of La Boutique, says, “We were thrilled to be selected as the chosen charity for this year’s Big Day Show. It’s a fabulous show attended by lots of local brides showcasing the best of the wedding industry in the area. It is also great to be working with House of Fraser. We shall be offering a chance to sign up for our charity guest lists and wedding favours, with a large donation going to the charity. We look forward to chatting with brides and grooms on the day too; we can’t wait to see you all there.”

Funds raised by La Boutique during The Big Day Wedding Show will be donated to The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation, in the hopes that even more bride and grooms affected by terminal and life limiting illnesses will be able to experience the day of their dreams.

http://www.laboutique.org.uk/
info@laboutique.org.uk
07970 443668

The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation is registered charity number 1155409
info@weddingwishingwell.org.uk
www.weddingwishingwell.org.uk

For more information regarding The Big Day Wedding Show please visit www.plymouthpavilions.com/thebigday/online/

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Fundraising News

Caroline’s Marathon for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation

In just two days time Caroline Searle, a dedicated supporter of The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation, will undertake one of the biggest fundraising challenge of her life to date; on Sunday 24th April Caroline will be running The Official Virgin Money London Marathon in aid of the dozens of couples affected by terminal and life-limiting illnesses for whom marriage is a distant dream. The charity is of the firm belief that everybody has the right to marry their soul mate, and why not? At a time when there is often very little cheer, a wedding day can provide happy memories for a couple’s family and friends, as well as the knowledge that they have been legally bound in a ceremony that no illness can ever take from them; joined by a love that can’t be denied.

We shall let Caroline tell her story…

“I found out about The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation approximately eighteen months ago, from my friends who run PMN Wedding Fayres. It was the year I turned 40, and coincided with me finding my 40th birthday challenge – The Great South Run in my hometown of Portsmouth. A couple of weeks before the run my friend had invited me to attend her running club, Haslemere Border AC, and it’s one of the best things I ever did! They gave me so much confidence with my running, although, for me, it’s all about the taking part and the club team spirit, rather than the pace. In the meantime I’d sorted myself a training plan that I’d been sticking to, and then, in October 2014, ran the furthest I had ever run; the 10 miles of The Great South Run. It was a fantastic experience, especially as I got to run passed my childhood home where my mum still lives, with my husband and mum cheering me on. My fundraising that year concentrated on asking for donations of wedding dresses, bridesmaids’ dresses, and accessories, and I was delighted to be able to deliver a car-load to Johnsons Dry Cleaners in Farnham.

So, now what? In 2015 I booked my entry for The Great South Run, and set myself a goal to complete the course in less than an hour and a half. As if that wasn’t a challenge enough, I also booked myself into the Reigate Half Marathon, since a friend of mine was helping to organise it, and the Elstead Marathon, The Gibbet Hill 10K, and the Harting Trail Race, all of which were team events as part of my new running club. This time it was all about the sponsorship and raising money for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation, and I found my friends, colleagues and family were so incredibly supportive; we also did a Great British Bake Off competition at work and raised £150 by baking and eating cake – it was a tough job, but unsurprisingly people were more than happy to take part!

The Reigate Half Marathon was a fantastic experience, and the longest I had run before; I felt amazing while doing it, and shocked myself by completing it in less than two hours. However, my eye was still on the main prize of The Great South Run; on the day the race started with other friends from the running club there too. It was perfect conditions for running, but was hard work! Once again I ran passed my mum and husband, but this time my brother was there too, and they were all so focused on getting that photo of me that they all completely forgot to cheer! However, as I got another mile down the road I heard an almighty scream of my name as my friend frantically waved and jumped up and down; brilliant! As I reached 8-miles I looked at my Garmin watch (great bit of kit, by the way!) and realised that, unless I suddenly stopped, twisted my ankle or got run down by the man in the mankini I had seen a while before (the chafing must have been dreadful!), I was going to run the race in less than that magic hour and a half. Rather than coasting, though, I got my head up and shoulders down and headed for home. I burst into tears when I crossed the line and saw my mum and husband, Dave, and I remember saying, “That was so hard.” However, when I looked at my watch and got the official time of 1:24:34 pinged through I knew that I had smashed it; all of that hard work had paid off. I then saw one of the coaches from the club who had been so incredibly supportive, and to be able to tell them I had beaten my target time was just fantastic.

So, with all my races done for the year (although I did sneak in the Gosport Half Marathon in November, which was a nightmare because of the wind) I totted up the figures and was thrilled to be able to tell everyone that we had raised over £1000 for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation; wow!

In April 2015, having sat and watched the London Marathon and sworn to my husband that there was no chance I would ever run it, I went and entered the ballot; sheer madness, right? In October 2015 I found out I had been unsuccessful, with the option given to apply via one of the race’s charity spots. No way – there is only one charity for me! There was just one other chance for a place; to apply via my running club, as they had been allocated two spaces. I duly did but, in the meantime, turned my attention to several back up plans. At first I looked into running in Paris, and this was definitely a consideration until the day I chose to flick through one of my running magazines – I know, I am such a square! It was there and then that I saw the Yorkshire Marathon, which is raced in York itself. It seemed like fate. You see, five years ago this year a very dear friend of mine died. Her other friends and I have always chosen to celebrate Heather’s life by meeting on her birthday in July, at a bench laid on the beautiful spot where she used to take her children. In October last year we laid a bench at her graveside in York; a very special moment for those who went. The decision was made, and with the consent of Heather’s parents, the plan was to enter the Yorkshire Marathon when the entries opened in January 2016.; well, let’s face it, I didn’t have a hope of getting the club place, did I?!

I couldn’t go to the Running Club Christmas ‘Do, when the club places would be announced, but I did pop in for drinks to say hello and wish everyone a Happy Christmas. A little later on that night I started getting messages. I read the messages, then re read them, then looked blankly at Dave, who by this point was desperate to know what they said. I read them again. The running club had given me a club place, and I was going to run the London Marathon! It’s not often I’m speechless, but that moment is definitely one of those occasions.

After the shock had died down I promptly came down with a cold – as you do. Then January 4th came, and, with it, the opportunity to enter the Yorkshire Marathon. I might have had my place in London, but I had made a promise to myself to run for Heather. So, there I was; poised at 9am to enter the Plusnet Yorkshire Marathon. The site promptly crashed and it took my friend and I, on both of our computers with a lot of swearing, an hour and forty minutes before I was finally successful; more stressful than trying to get Adele tickets!!!!

And so to today; my double marathon challenge is set, and with it a whole new year of fundraising. To date I have attended a number of wedding fayres in an effort to drum up support, and relied upon the generous donations of friends, family members, and amazing strangers I’ve never met. The total currently stands at over £1,000, but I know I can do more – that we can raise more money together. I’m continuing to follow my training schedule, and have just had my nails done for the occasion. The London Marathon is in two days, and I’m ready!”

Naomi and the team at The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation couldn’t be prouder of Caroline if they tried; run, Snapey, run! You can donate to Caroline’s fundraising efforts here, and discover more about the charity for which she is running here. Good luck to anyone who will be running this weekend, but especially to Caroline – you can do this!

www.weddingwishingwell.org.uk

www.justgiving.com/RunSnapeyRun2016

Fundraising News

Event: Charity Pamper Evening

Charity Pamper Evening in aid of The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation
Friday 27th November, 2015 7-10pm
The Reece Strawbridge Centre, Colyton

Prepare to be pampered like never before, and all for a good cause!

If the task of preparing for Christmas is taking its toll on you already, may we suggest an evening of pampering and entertainment? In fact, do you even need an excuse?! Of course not! You are cordially invited to our charity pamper evening, which will feature mini manicures, massages, eyelash flicks, spray tans, facials, reflexology, and hair up-dos, as well as close-up magic by Jack Ward Magic, and refreshments. As if that wasn’t enough there will also be an opportunity to purchase your Christmas gifts, and treat yourself, with stalls from the Body Shop, Scentsy, Actiderm, Forever Living, and Younique Make Up and Jewellery, as well as a raffle with some truly amazing prizes.

Tempted? Let us tell you a little about why we’re treating you to a fabulous evening out…

The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation

We can’t wait to pamper and entertain you, and you’re bound to leave the event feeling far more relaxed. However, the proceedings have a serious element, too, as we are aiming to raise as much money as possible for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation, a local charity that organises, and raises funds for, weddings for those affected by terminal and life limiting illness. The charity’s founder, Naomi, is no stranger to such heartbreak, having been diagnosed with incurable secondary cancer five years ago, just six days after her little boy was born. Having married her soul mate, Graham, thanks to the generosity of others, Naomi decided to pay her happy day forward, and ensure that those in her position can marry the love of their life before it’s too late – they need your help to make each of those dream days a reality, which is where we’re stepping in. All of the proceeds from this event, including entry sales, donations, and the cost of raffle tickets, will be donated to the charity. Please come and support us, and enjoy a wonderful evening while you’re at it.

Tickets to this fabulous event cost just £5, which includes a drink upon arrival. Entry is strictly limited, so be sure to purchase your tickets soon.

To find out more, or to book your tickets, please contact Alix on 07725256820, or email alix@weddingwishingwell.org.uk

The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation

www.weddingwishingwell.org.uk

info@weddingwishingwell.org.uk

Fundraising News

Event: Halloween Charity Fright Night

We love a good party as much as the next person and are thrilled to be able to bring you details of our next fundraiser, which is taking place this Halloween – miss it at your peril!

Charity Fright Night
Saturday 31st October, 7.30pm until late
Buckerell Lodge Hotel, Exeter

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Dust off you Halloween costume, whip out the face paint, and prepare for a spooktacular evening in aid of a fantastic cause…

If you’re looking for an evening that’s more treat than trick, head to Buckerell Lodge Hotel, Exeter, this Halloween for a Charity Fright Night that’s set to be ghoulishly great. Starting at 7.30pm the event promises a fiendish finger buffet, eerie entertainment from Velvet Touch, and the opportunity to win a variety of spooktacular raffle prizes. Fancy dress is optional, although you won’t want to miss out on the frightful fun that’s in store!

The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation

While it’s hoped that every guest at this fabulous party will have a great time there is a serious element to the festivities; it will be raising vital funds for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation, a local charity that organises, and raises funds for, weddings for those affected by terminal and life limiting illness. The charity’s founder, Naomi, is no stranger to such heartbreak, having been diagnosed with incurable secondary cancer five years ago. Having married her soul mate, Graham, thanks to the generosity of others, Naomi decided to pay her happy day forward, and currently works tirelessly to ensure that those in her position can marry the love of their life before it’s too late – they need your help to make each of those dream days a reality.

Entry to this wickedly wonderful evening is free, although admittance is by ticket only. Don’t delay and preorder yours today

To find out more please call the Buckerell Lodge Hotel events team on 01392 221 111, or email events.buckerell@shlhotels.com. You won’t want to miss this spooky spectacular. Sorry, but this event is for Over 18s only.

 

The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation

www.weddingwishingwell.org.uk

info@weddingwishingwell.org.uk

Fundraising News

Surprise Surprise, Naomi!

We hope you had your tissues at the ready this evening, as our beautiful founder, Naomi and her husband, Graham, appeared on Surprise Surprise – and what deserved appearance it was. As well as being surprised by a gift of wedding venues and a paid employee, the couple also received a fantastic holiday in the Caribbean, and we couldn’t be more pleased for them!

As you can imagine things at The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation HQ have gone a little mad following the appearance – if you have sent an email or left a voicemail message for us please know that we will get back to you as soon as humanly possible. If you have left a comment via Facebook, we would advise you to contact us on info@weddingwishingwell.org.uk as the comments aren’t always manned and moderated – we don’t want to miss what you have to say! Just know that we are hugely appreciative of your offers of support, and can’t wait to speak to you.

In the meantime, if you were watching ITV this evening, or happen to be catching up on the programme later in the week, and would like to help, please see below for the ways in which you can get involved and support such a fantastic lady and her team.

Donation

Whether it’s a one-off donation or a regular amount paid every month your support is so gratefully received. It may always sound cliched, but there really is no amount that is too small to make a huge difference to our couples. £10 may pay towards favours or a cake, but even £5 can make up the last few pounds needed to pay off a venue – see what we mean?! To make an instant donation or set up a direct debit please click here. You can also donate by texting, “WWWF15” and an amount to 70070, sending a cheque made payable to The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation to 39 Marsh Green Road West, Marsh Barton, EX2 8PN Exeter, Devon, by shopping via EasyFundraising.org.uk, or by visiting the Just Giving page here. PHEW! It couldn’t be easier to show your support for Naomi and the team.

Suppliers

One of the things that Naomi was most heartened by during the run up to her own wedding was just how many suppliers were willing to donate their time and services for a reduced cost, or completely free – their generosity was a huge factor in conceiving the charity. For this reason we’re incredibly proud of, and grateful to, those who have chosen to add their names to our bursting database, and we are so thrilled to have so many talented companies working alongside us. If you work in the wedding industry in any capacity – be it as a celebrant, a florist, a venue owner, a bridal boutique owner, a cake maker, a photographer, an entertainer, or any other role – and you feel you’d be able to donate your time and services to us for a reduced cost, or even for free,then we’d like to hear from you. We’d like to know who you are, what you do, and where you’re based; please email these details, along with any relevant contact information and a website (if applicable) to info@weddingwishingwell.org.uk. You will then be contacted confirm you are on the database and, should we require your expertise in your local area, be sure to keep an eye out!

Fundraising

If you’re not sure you could commit to making a donation to The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation but would like to help us, please consider organising and hosting, or participating in, a fundraising event for us. Recent fundraising efforts have included a bingo night, a sponsored head shave, a sponsored cycle, numerous runs and athletic pursuits, an abseil, and charity concert – the only limit to the possibilities is your imagination! We really do appreciate those who take the time to fundraise for us, no matter how small you think your contribution is. If you’re able to place a donation tin at your workplace, or decide to sell cakes at a local event, you’re helping a couple in need. If you’d like to raise money for us, or want to tell us about your event, please send all details to info@weddingwishingwell.org.uk. All cheques must be made The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation, and sent to 39 Marsh Green Road West, Marsh Barton, EX2 8PN Exeter, Devon.

Gown donation

Your wedding dress will, in all probability, be one of your most treasured possessions, reminding you of the best day of your life and a time when you felt, and looked, phenomenal. We understand that it can be incredibly difficult to decide to part with such an item, and are so grateful to those who have chosen to make that donation; any dresses donated to us are either gifted to a bride in need, size depending, or sold in our boutique, La Boutique, in order to raise funds for the charity. Rest assured, your dress will be worn and loved by somebody very deserving, and play a part in one of our weddings. To find out more about gown donation please click here. If you have a dress that you’d like to donate, or any accessories you feel we may be able to use, please email us in the first instance with an image of your item/s and any relevant descriptions; one of our team will then get in contact to arrange a courier if we are able to use your dress and/or accessories. The email address is info@weddingwishingwell.org.uk.

Gift List

These days so many couples choose to live together prior to marriage that they often have no need for the traditional gift list, which would normally be used to kit out a brand new marital home. If you are currently planning your wedding and find yourself in the same situation please think of us; rather than asking your friends and family to contribute to your honeymoon, or spend money on gifts that you may not need, please consider asking them to make a donation to The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation instead. After all, what better wedding gift could there be than finding out you’ve helped a deserving couple to tie the knot? We are able to provide literature for your guests so that they know where there donation is going – all you need to do is enjoy your very special day. You can apply for a gift list here.

Shop

Personalised and bespoke wedding favours are hugely popular at the moment as more couples strive to send their guests home with a memento that will last a lifetime. If you’re fed up of trawling websites or shops for favours that reflect you as a couple please consider giving our shop a browse; we’re proud to offer personalised seed packets, tea pillows, favour packets, coffee bean sachets, bottle hangers, and CD sleeves, which can be ordered with your names and wedding dates on – far more personal than a bundle of sugared almonds (although we’re rather partial to those too…). In addition to favours you can purchase a signed copy of Naomi’s book, “No Ordinary Wedding Planner” from the foundation’s shop, so please do check it out.

If you would like to pledge your support for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation as a supplier, financial backer, via the donation of a dress or accessories, or as a fundraiser, please email Naomi and her team on info@weddingwishingwell.org.uk. Your support is incredibly appreciated, and we can’t wait to hear how you can help.

Please bear in mind that our main telephone number, 07875 030393, is an unmanned line. If you have used it to contact us, we promise we will get back to you as soon as possible. If your query is urgent please email info@weddingwishingwell.org.uk and mark your correspondence as, ‘urgent’.

Fundraising News

We are now on Just Giving!

Did you know…? We are now on Just Giving, which is a huge boost to us as a charity.

Established as “the world’s social platform for giving”, Just Giving ensures that fundraising for, or donating to, registered causes is as easy, convenient, and safe as it possibly can be. Just imagine; everything that you need to set up a fundraising page, or find your favourite charities, in one place – we’re so excited, and hope that it will make fundraising for us easier than ever before.

To find out more, make a monthly donation, follow our supporters, or fundraise for us, click here. It has never been quite so easy to fundraise or donate for us all in one place!

Fundraising News

Please support our dedicated fundraisers!

The summer is a fantastic time for us in terms of fundraising, and we have a few events to bring to your attention! While we understand that not everybody is made of money we would truly appreciate it if you could spare a pound or two to show your support for our amazing team, and the individuals who choose to fundraise for us; your motivation will no doubt spur them on in their endeavours, as well as raising vital funds for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation. Every penny really does help, and we’re so grateful for what people will put themselves through in the name of charity!

The Amazing Running Challenge

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Firstly we’d like to tell you about Caroline Snape, a dedicated individual indeed. Last year she raised a fantastic £140 for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation, as well as amassing a huge collection of outfits for the Wedding Dress Amnesty – go Caroline! This year she has decided to push herself to the absolute limit and will be competing in four separate events; the Elstead Marathon and The Gibbet Hill 10k have both been successfully completed, but the Reigate Half Marathon and The Great South Run are still to come, meaning there is still BAGS of time for you to sponsor our Snapey. Caroline is hoping to smash last year’s fundraising total, and we know that she can do it.

To sponsor Caroline in her amazing endeavour please click here and give what you can – we are incredibly impressed by her determination.

Owen’s Great Cycle Challenge

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And now for something entirely different… next up is Owen Bishop, an incredible young man who will be undertaking the cycling challenge of his lifetime (so far, in any case) – to wend his way from Burnham-on-Sea to Land’s End in Cornwall. This mammoth journey of 220 miles will take Owen three days to complete, and we’re so humbled that he has chosen to support The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation. You can do it, Owen!

You can sponsor Owen, and learn more about his adventure, here.

Tracy and Bridget’s Marathon

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We are so impressed by the determination of this pair! Originally scheduled to complete a half marathon earlier in the year, both sustained injuries that left them unable to compete. Undeterred, though, Tracy and Bridget have committed to running the Barnstaple Marathon on the 27th September in honour of The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation. Please show them your support by donating here; we are so grateful that neither has been put off by their injuries, and hope you are inspired too.

The Great West Run

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Introducing our amazing Great West Run team; Alix, Paul M, Mark, and Paul H – Heather remains camera shy… for now! This group of five extraordinary individuals will be running the Great West Run, a 13.1 miles route through Exeter and the surrounding countryside, in October in order to raise funds for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation – we couldn’t be prouder. Each is hard at their training as we speak, showing real dedication to their cause; can you spare a pound or ten in sponsorship? Paul Huggett, who will be completing only his second run, is one of our grooms, and we are so honoured to have been a part of his and Abbey’s special day. Paul and Abbey enjoyed two months of happy marriage before she sadly lost her battle to Secondary Breast Cancer in November 2014 – we know you will all be behind his race in memory of his beautiful wife.

You can read the team’s profiles, and support them, here: Alix RenshawPaul MorrisMark FlynnHeather ManningPaul Huggett. Please show them every ounce of support that you can; they’re an amazing bunch of people, and we are so grateful for their time and huge efforts.

Louise’s Run or Dye Challenge

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Louise Baker, the very writer who maintains this blog, will be donning her running shoes in October for Run or Dye, an event that will see her pelted with multicoloured paint while she attempts to complete a 5km jog. A self-confessed ‘slummy mummy’, Louise hasn’t competed in an event such as this for ten years, and is currently hard at work trying to remember which foot is which when it comes to wearing trainers… You can read more about her challenge, and sponsor her here; she is determined to raise as much as she can for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation. The more you donate, the faster she will jog!

So there you have it; those are just some of the supporters that are hard at work fundraising for The Wedding Wishing Well Foundation over the next few months. Perhaps you’ll choose just one to support – perhaps a family member, friend, or colleague – or will spread your pennies over a number of our fundraisers. Whatever you decide, please show them your support, and remember that we cannot be who we are without you.

Thank you – and a huge, “YOU CAN DO IT” and “THANK YOU” to anyone who is setting out to raise money for us this year.