When Andrea and Nick told me they were planning a traditional Nigerian wedding blessing a week before their actual wedding day, at St Anselm’s in Tooting Bec, London, I just knew I had to include that in the wedding photography package I offered them.
After all, as soon as I think of traditional African weddings I immediately think vibrant colours, song, vibrant colour, dance and, did I mention, vibrant colours – everything that my documentary wedding photography approach would love to capture.. And I definitely wasn’t disappointed.
The Nigerian wedding blessing was also to take place at St Anselm’s, Tooting Bec – but rather than in the Grade II listed church itself, in the hall in the basement beneath the church.
Nigerian Wedding Blessing in Tooting Bec
Andrea and Nick lived nearby, in Tooting Bec, so I agreed to meet Nick and his family – all down from Scotland – at their flat. Andrea was getting ready at her parents in Thornton Heath, and because I would be covering her getting ready on the formal wedding day a week later, it was agreed I’d cover Nick for the Nigerian Blessing.
Being a short walk from St Anselm’s, Nick and his family and friends chose to walk to the church, in full traditional African attire, along the busy Tooting Bec Road – much to the intrigue of many motorists and passers by.
At the church all the guests, Nigerian or not, had arrived in full traditional attire – a very colourful spectacle on the Tooting Bec Road.
St Anselm’s Church Nigerian Wedding Blessing
The blessing started with Nick and his groomsmen being welcomed in, with song and dance an important necessity. This followed an element of bartering between the families – both good humoured and entertaining.
Eventually Andrea arrived, led in by her bridal party, concealed behind an umbrella – as the party itself sang and dance. She was then required to find her groom, who was hidden amongst the congregation before the blessing itself began.
Formalities finished with the bride and groom dancing in front of guests who showered the happy couple with dollar notes and other cash.
Nigerian Wedding Photographer
Of course, things didn’t actually end there as the Andrea and Nick would officially marry at St Anselm’s a week later -and that wedding day story I will post next. But here are a small selection of photos from their Nigerian wedding blessing.
Book Me As Your Tooting Wedding Photographer
Are you having a Nigerian wedding or are getting married at St Anselm’s, Tooting Bec in London? Or perhaps you enjoy my storytelling, unposed wedding photography? If you are I’d be delighted to hear about your wedding plans.
You call or text me on 07920 422144 or send me a message via my contact page. I’ll be delighted to hear from you.