Aged 5, Katherine Cresswell’s ambition was to be a bride. Look what happened

The Savvy Wedding Planner Katherine Cresswell works from her Ipswich home.

The Savvy Wedding Planner Katherine Cresswell works from her Ipswich home. - Credit: Su Anderson

Thirty years ago, a little girl called Katherine appeared in the East Anglian Daily Times.

The Savvy Wedding Planner Katherine Cresswell works from her Ipswich home.

The Savvy Wedding Planner Katherine Cresswell works from her Ipswich home. - Credit: Su Anderson

“My ambition is to be a bride,” she told us.

Since then, little girls’ ambitions may have evolved somewhat – one might hope? – and indeed Katherine herself had quite a bit to do with her life before she became one.

She went to the University of Loughborough to study European business. She spent a year studying in Paris, honing her fluency in the language. She travelled across America, New Zealand and Australia before working her way up the career ladder via Goldman Sachs in London, then at Willis and then Axa in Ipswich.

“But I’ve always loved weddings,” she says. “And that has never changed. I’m still the same girl who drew wedding pictures and sent them to the palace when Lady Di got married!” Now Katherine is a wedding planner, a job, she says, she sometimes still has to pinch herself about because “I can’t really believe that I’ve finally got the life I wanted.”

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She married Richard, a claims handler whom she met while working at Axa, in 2013 and they are parents to 16-month-old Teddy.

“After Teddy was born, I knew I didn’t really want to return to my old job,” she says. “I wanted something I could do around Teddy and the idea came to me one night at 4am after Teddy had woken up and I couldn’t get back to sleep.”

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Katherine, who has two clients already, is promoting her business, The Savvy Wedding Planner, with a party at the Cameo Hotel in Copdock on March 19. Aimed at couples who are planning their wedding, there will be music and a magic show, a chance to win a £3,000 honeymoon, as well as a charity auction to raise money for St Elizabeth Hospice.

“I’ve done a lot of fundraising for them in memory of my mother,” says Katherine, whose mum, Carol, died from leukaemia in 2012. “Mum would be so proud of what I’m doing now. I only wish she was still here to share it.”

Katherine is also close to her dad, Tony, who still lives in the home where she grew up in Stratford St Mary. He gave her away at her wedding in 2013, which was held at Leez Priory, near Chelmsford.

“It was the best wedding,” Katherine recalls. “I planned it myself, of course! After all, I’ve had my wedding planned since I was five! But it wasn’t exactly as I thought it would be. For example, I’d always wanted a horse and carriage but that wouldn’t have made sense because I was already at the venue, staying there the night before. Instead, I ending up having a helicopter ride on the morning of my wedding because it just so happened that a helicopter pilot was staying there too and my bridesmaids talked him into it! But then again that’s just how a wedding should be. Well planned, memorable and wonderful, but also with room for an extra-special surprise!”

n The Savvy Wedding Party is at the Cameo Hotel Copdock on Thursday, March 19. Tickets are £5. Visit

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