Maenan Abbey Pretend Wedding Rehearsal – Car SOS

Last night was an exciting night for TV in our house. But it wasn’t the usual affair of Homeland or This Is Us… It was Car SOS. A show that until a few months ago I didn’t even know existed.

I’ll start at the beginning… October last year, I’d just dropped “The Monster” off at nursery and had a missed call and voicemail from an 020 number. Obviously, it was going to be a recorded message about PPI. It wasn’t, it was a message from a TV Production Company asking if I was available for a few hours work next week. Although I fully expected it to be a scam I called them back. It was for a show called Car SOS and they needed me to pretend to be a wedding photographer on the show – I could do that. So yeah, I’ll have a go. I figured I’d just be in the background or something – it’s a show about cars after all. The next week I arrive at Maenan Abbey, ready to pretend to be a wedding photographer. I quickly realise that I’m going to have lines… I’m gonna have to say things on TV. Oh no. I’m not prepared for this. Then the director explains the plan and that I’m the “linchpin” – his words not mine. Ah crap. Too late to back out now.

Here’s the plot: Ceri’s Dad has an old Jaguar Mk2 with huge sentimental value, he’s been trying to restore it but due to ill health he hasn’t been able to. The Car SOS team swipe his car without him knowing and fix it up real good. Ceri tells her Dad that they’re having a rehearsal with their wedding photographer at Maenan Abbey. It’s my job to keep the family in the Hotel for a few minutes, then bring them a predesignated spot and do some more photos.  Then Tim crashes our wedding photo and after a little banter leads us to a much better spot to do some more photographs revealing the restored car to Ceri’s Dad!

I watched a few episodes the night before to get an idea of what happens and I’ll be honest…  I thought it was all a setup. They must know. For example, no-one has a wedding photography rehearsal the year before their wedding to practice group photos. I had 2 (TWO) “assistants”, who were actually the other camera operators for the show. It just seems so ridiculous that you think they would have to be in on it. But let me tell you, he had no idea.  None what so ever. I nearly cried when he realised it was his car. I know, having a kid has made me soft. But it was properly emotional.

Everyone was lovely, I was made to feel like a valued member of the team. Right from when I first spoke to Daniella, to meet “Woody” the Director, to the moment I left Maenan Abbey. And now I’ve seen the amount of planning and preparation that goes into the show it’s clear that there is nothing set up about it. Tim & Fuzz (the two presenters) are absolute naturals and make it look easy. But everyone involved genuinely cares about the people on the show and ensuring that the surprise isn’t blown.

One thing that I should point out…  If you watch the episode, I never, ever, tell anyone to do the superman during group shots or at any point for that matter. I’ve never said it before and I’ll never say it again.  I needed to pad it out for longer than I thought before Tim and his “wife” arrived and I panicked. Perhaps I’m not cut out for being a TV Wedding Photographer after all…

Anyway, here are a few behind the scenes photos from my time as a pretend wedding photographer on the telly.

Maenan Abbey Stair Case Family Photo outside Maenan Abbey People walking in Maenan Abbey carpark Group Photo by trees in Maenan Abbey car park Tim Shaw from Car SOS crashes pretend wedding photos Restored Jaguar Mk 2 revealed to owner Dad's reaction to seeing his car Maenan-Abbey-Wedding-Car-SOS_09 Car SOS film crew in Maenan Abbey car park Maenan-Abbey-Wedding-Car-SOS_11 Bride to be hugging dad Maenan-Abbey-Wedding-Car-SOS_13 Maenan-Abbey-Wedding-Car-SOS_14 Maenan-Abbey-Wedding-Car-SOS_15 Maenan-Abbey-Wedding-Car-SOS_16 Maenan-Abbey-Wedding-Car-SOS_17 Maenan-Abbey-Wedding-Car-SOS_18


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