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Sunday 09 April 2017

Gresham and Steve's wedding

Posted in: Weddings & Civil Unions
By Gresham Bradley, with - 16th March 2014

This month, Gresham Bradley and Steve Rogers married after 17 years together. They had a gorgeous day with guests in rainbow colours, doggy ring bearers, a performance from GALS and even a trip on the Pink Bus!

Gresham writes (with input from Steve!):

Steve and I first met when I came back to NZ in 1996 after living in Vancouver Canada since I was 15. I had few original friends here but one of the first of my new friends was Johnny Givins, (former GABA President and now a GABA Charitable Trustee).

I wanted to buy a house in Grey Lynn and Johnny said "you must go see Steve Rogers". Steve had recently become a mortgage broker with Mortgage People, where he still works today. Steve's network of clients from that time remains strong to this day and many are our friends today.

Steve took a shine to me and after I'd bought the house, one day brought me a bunch of flowers.....I'd forgotten and was not home!!! But despite this bad start, we began seeing each other. This cumulated when I was invited to Steve's mid-winter Christmas party in June where all his friends kept coming up to me and telling me what a wonderful man he was. It was quite a campaign and I fell for it and that night we slept together for the first time and I did not go home!!! We've been together pretty much ever since.

The original offer of a job, which brought me back to NZ in the first place fell over, and here Johnny Givins, who at the time was producing Queer Nation, comes back into the picture in a big way. I went to Johnny with an idea drawn from my love of sailing and history. "Let’s make a series that follows Captain Cook's discovery of NZ in 1769"......and so 'Captain's Log' was born, which we got funded and broadcast with TV One, later winning Best Documentary Series of the year. By this time I was on the GABA Executive and making even more great friends that we have always shared. One of the closest is Richard James who is now himself engaged to the lovely Matt. A few years later we started a small production company to deliver educational programming that would be broadcast but also streamed on the internet. Back then internet video was totally new, it was before YouTube!! So we were pioneers. This company is now e-cast which streams videos for the business community and through a Trust runs eTV which delivers recorded TV and educational videos to Universities, Wananga, Polytechnics and Schools in NZ. It’s been 8 years of hard work but the companies are now a success, but this would never have happened without Steve's total support for what we were doing, the support being on all levels including years of financial inputs.

We've now renovated two houses here and share a love of creating beautiful gardens. We've got two dogs, Pipi at 13 years and Siri only 13 months old who we both love. When Pipi first came adopted from the SPCA Steve said that he wanted a cat as he preferred cats. There is still no cat!!! We share a great love of dogs and what they bring to our lives, a love of travel (we try to go somewhere every year) and entertaining our friends. We like the same music, movies and TV shows. And very importantly we both have hugely supporting and loving families who are integral parts of our lives.

We do have differences which we celebrate as it’s important to have some things that each person can do themselves. Steve loves playing Bridge and is very good at it, whereas I am not a big game player. I on the other hand love sailing and he doesn't, except that Steve joins us when we are anchored and the G&T's are coming out!! Steve is supportive of my work as Chair of the GABA Charitable Trust, although this was tested when I worked for a year to get Pride established and funded and then agreed to go on as Co-Chair with the amazing Megan Cunningham-Adams, who with her wife Tamina are now also very close friends.

The ceremony was in our home garden attended by 120 guests Michael Bancroft was our superb celebrant and we are incredibly grateful to the 40 GALS singers who volunteered their time to come and provided a magical musical accompaniment to the ceremony.

The theme was "Rainbow" and all our guests made an effort to wear one or more of the six colours.

We had special waistcoats made with rainbow ribbons sewn on, our two dogs came up to give us our rings which was a very special moment. The whole day was amazing, the time flew for us and to have so much love and affection being shown for us was an absolutely fabulous experience.

Then we all moved on to the reception, Steve and I joining a number of our guests on the Pink Bus which took us from home to the reception venue at the Remuera Bridge Club. The trip on the Pink Bus was a highlight with everyone singing and dancing all the way. (Thanks to Wayne Clarke for making this possible).

The reception room was decorated in a full on Rainbow theme and looked just stunning. It was an event that many of our friends and relatives contributed hugely to. In fact the only person who was not "family" was the DJ!!! Many people commented on the level of love that was in the room and maybe this is one reason why.

We are keeping our surnames each, no changes there. We both are looking forward to honouring our vows to each other and really do feel that our love grows every day. To have been able to share this experience with our friends and family has brought the true meaning of why a wedding is such a significant event. We have been able to openly declare our love before all the people who are important to us and have that recognised in law. And to have had such a celebration and party doing it just tops it all!!

Pictures thanks to Richard James

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Gresham Bradley, with - 16th March 2014