Picture-perfect Highland scenery for this couple’s wintry elopement

Lloyd Clark & Camella Camm

2nd December 2021

Venue | The Torridon Hotel, Inverness-shire
Photographer | Alison White Photography

A groom in a blue suit and a bride in a white dress and flower crown pose in front of a Highland backdrop of snowy hills and a loch

“I asked Camella if she would marry me on Christmas Day 2020. This was despite her mentioning (and me then completely forgetting) how much she didn’t like festive proposals – so I can safely say it was definitely a surprise to her, ha!

In the early stages of discussing our wedding, our plans looked to be a small ceremony with just family present. But the more we talked about it, the guestlist we ended up with didn’t sound too lively. We thought that if we were invited to a party with a similar line-up, we’d probably try and get out of it! All our family and friends were supportive about our decision for it to be just the two of us.

Both of us wanted to ensure that any wedding we planned would be about us, without too many distractions and stresses. We had been to plenty of other weddings where the happy couple didn’t really seem to speak to each other as they had so many things to sort out and other guests to speak to. We didn’t want that for our wedding.

At that point, we decided we’d elope to Las Vegas. However, Covid travel restrictions were still in place and every week or so, we’d check the latest guidelines in hope of movement. Nothing changed quickly enough, so we had to call time and look for a domestic location.

We didn’t set a budget, but were mindful that we didn’t want to spend a fortune or get into debt. However, as it was just the two of us, we were able to push the boat out on certain things.

We started scoping out elopement packages in countryside venues across the UK. Both of us really love the rugged scenery of the Highlands, so when we came across The Torridon, a remote boutique hotel in Wester Ross, we knew it was perfect. We put our faith in the weather gods that the grounds and surrounding mountains would look impressively wintry in December.

We used The Torridon’s library for the ceremony, with hotel’s owners Dan and Rohaise Rose-Bristow acting as our witnesses. They are friends of my parents, so it was good to have a couple of friendly faces there – although admittedly this was our first time meeting them.

Both of us were far too nervous to write any vows, so we had a straightforward civil ceremony led by Sara Krzyzanowski from Highland Council. I’m always surprised by how simple the actual ceremony is: you say a few words and then you are married – almost like you’re saying a spell!

We were in such a beautiful part of the world that we knew we wanted the scenery and the landscape to come to the fore in our photographs. Our photographer Alison White was knowledgeable about the area and knew the best places to go to get spectacular shots. She got some fantastic pictures without us feeling that we were posing. In fact, some of the candid-style photos of us casually talking to each other are some of our favourites.

I liked getting the photos out in the wilderness. It was fun to get a few beeps of the horn from the occasional passing cars. That said, I think Camella was pretty delighted to sit down and have a glass of champagne by a roaring fire back at the hotel after braving the chilly winter air in her wedding dress and heels!”

Top tip: “As we were eloping, our workload was much smaller, but we still swore by a good spreadsheet,” says Lloyd. “I’d suggest other couples plan for a few evenings sat together going through one, making sure that every job is ticked off.”

Venue The Torridon Hotel
Photography Alison White Photography
Registrar Sara Krzyzanowski, Highland Council
Bride’s dress ASOS
Hair and makeup Bonny’s Wonderland
Groomswear Moss Bros
Flowers Wild Gorse Studio

a sign saying 'The Torridon' on an exterior wall of the hotela decor detail with winter foliagethe hotel's cosy interiorsthe bride getting her hair and makeup donea close-up of the flowers and rings; a polaroid of the couple with face masks on sits on top of their passportsa branch of holly; holly decorated a light fitting in the hotela bottle of champagne styled next to candles and the bride's flower crown; the bride's bouquetthe couple kiss whilst getting readythe couple get ready next to each other in the bathroomthe groom sees the bride in her dress for the first timethe bride puts the groom's buttonhole onthe bride and groom during the ceremonythe bride and groom and two witnesses during the ceremonythe bride and groom laughing during the ceremonythe bride puts a ring on the groom's fingerthe bride and groom kiss after saying their vows; the bride and groom laughing at the top of the aislethe bride signing the marriage licensea toast with the bride and groom and their witnessesthe bride and groom in front of the hotelthe bride gets out of a red carthe bride and groom walking down towards a lochthe bride and groom pose in front of a snowy landscape, laughingthe bride and groom pose for the camerathe bride and groom kiss in front of a snowy landscapethe groom kisses the bride's face; the bride and groom look at each otherthe bride and groom look at each other in black and white; the bride and groom smilea wide shot taking in the landscape, with the bride and groom facing out across a locha close-up of the bride's dress and bouquetthe bride and groom dance on some rocks, with snowy mountains behind themthe bride and groom walk across some rocksthe bride and groom shot from below, looking out across the landscapethe bride and groom embrace, with a reflection of the snowy mountains in the loch behind thema black and white image of the couple posing in front of the lochthe bride and groom walking away from the photographer; the bride and groom pose on a rocky outcropthe bride and groom pose by a loch with a cottage behind themthe bride and groom stand with their backs to the camera. A snowy mountain and loch are in the background.