Kathryn Goodfellow and Stephen Foggin, who live in Whitley Bay, tied the knot at Baltic on May 22, 2016… and in a rather nice way it has tied them to the building.
“We used to go back and take pictures every year at this spot in front of the ‘rusty’ wall,” says Kathryn, now the mother of two little girls, Astrid, aged five, and Orla, two.
“We had a photo from when we were dating there and then we had one on our wedding day and then on the first anniversary of our wedding when I was heavily pregnant with Astrid.
“Then we went back when it was her first birthday. We used to do that frequently.”
Kathryn, who combines parenting with studying for a master’s degree in psychology and working part time for a charity, remembers a wedding fair at Baltic when she was dating.
“I dragged Stephen round and got the idea then.
“We met in Newcastle and we’re just really proud of where we live, the North-East. Stephen grew up in Gosforth, I grew up in Teesside but came to university here and never left.
“We didn’t want a conventional wedding. We’re not churchgoers and we wanted a humanist ceremony.
“The legal part of the wedding took place the day before when we spoke 11 words to each other. It was just a bit of admin to us. Our real wedding day was on the 22nd at Baltic.
“We had a humanist celebrant come toBaltic and had the ceremony at 3pm in the riverside terrace followed by a drinks reception on Level 1.
“But as you come out of the lift there’s a cinema room and they said we could do anything we wanted with that. So we put on a slide show of photos of when we were little.
“We’re the same age so there was one of him on a donkey, one of me on a donkey; him in the bath, me in the bath. Bit cringy but also quite sweet, really.
“We had music by The Cornshed Sisters, because they’re my mates, and 70 or 80 guests.”
Kathryn says neither she nor Stephen, a Gateshead Council manager, regrets the decision to have a Baltic wedding.
“It was brilliant. We got married on a Sunday, so it was quiet; and what was lovely was that some members of Stephen’s family, from South Tyneside, hadn’t been to the Quayside since it was developed and remembered it as a working area.
“Also, quite a lot of my friends from university hadn’t been back for 10 years or whatever.”
Kathryn says she and Stephen were engaged for only 100 days.
“We just wanted to get married but didn’t want any bells and whistles or sugared almonds or stuff.
“I ordered my dress online from America. I didn’t want to look like I was a bride because that seems like fancy dress.
“The only thing I wanted at my wedding, my only request, was to walk in to Mark Knopfler’s Local Hero. Me and my dad ran the Great North Run a few times together and it’s my Geordie anthem.
“We also sang When I’m Sixty-Four and Bring Me Sunshine.”
A good time was had by all. “And,” concludes Kathryn, “you just can’t beat that view.”