Chippenham couple lose £1,600 as wedding photography business goes bankrupt

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A Wiltshire couple have lost £1,600 and are now looking for another wedding photographer to take pictures of their big day after a Devon-based business went bankrupt.

Amy Thomas, 40, from Chippenham, is ‘devastated’ after losing £1,600 and a wedding photographer after South West Photo and Film announced she had filed for bankruptcy.

The bride-to-be said: ‘It’s awful. Your wedding is an important part of your life.

“When you’re trying to be organized and you’ve saved so hard to have your dream wedding, then it happens.”

She and her future husband were able to find a new videographer but are still looking for a photographer to take pictures of their wedding.

Amy said: “We are always looking for a photographer all day and our budget is literally zero because we have saved so much.

“Unfortunately, because we didn’t want to put the wedding on credit cards, we saved up and paid Lee with our debit card.”

They are among hundreds of couples who were left without wedding photos or a photographer for their big day after South West Photo and Film went bankrupt and its website and social media platforms shut down.

The Torquay-based firm, formerly known as Lee Brewer Photography, said the financial implications of Covid-19 have “proven too much”.

This has led to many couples – some claiming up to 800 – across the country desperately looking for a new photographer.

They must also find additional money after paying South West Photo and Film a deposit or the full balance.

Desperate couples have now turned to an online Facebook group, set up by a photographer from Devon and another from Dorset, which hopes to help the bride and groom find alternative photographers for their big day.

It also became a platform where desperate individuals shared stories of how they were let down by South West Photo and Film.

Customers who email the company will receive an automated email response stating, “It is with the greatest sadness that we wish to inform you that South West Photo and Film, formerly Lee Brewer Photography, has ceased his activities.

”We will no longer be able to provide you with our services at your wedding.

“We have made great efforts over the past two years to survive the Covid-19 pandemic. The financial implications proved too heavy for us to recover from.

“Unfortunately, I have had no choice but to cease operations and file for bankruptcy effective today, July 27. An Official Receiver will be contacting you for further information.

“NB, if you have had a wedding with us in the last 12 weeks and are still waiting for your photos/videos, we will be contacting you over the next few weeks with information on how you can access your photo files and video .

”We appreciate that this is not ideal, but we will get you the relevant information as soon as we can.

“I apologize as this is going to cause stress and I am extremely sorry for that. Unfortunately, there would never have been a good time.

“I’ve listed a group of recommended photographers, videographers and mirror booth companies below that might help you with your day.

“Please note that these people are in no way affiliated with Southwest Photo and Film and you will be booking them in a completely separate entity.”

A support group, Let’s Find You Another Wedding Photographer/Videographer 2022, was launched last Wednesday (July 27) and already has more than 1,600 members.


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