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Jay Tough

I became a Toastmaster 10+ years ago when a friend of mine suggested I utilise my loud voice and my great organisational skills in a more proactive way. I decided that a modern twist on the art of the Toastmaster was necessary and implemented this into my style, bringing my quick and cheeky sense of humour and quirky ideas into action and to be honest I have never looked back.

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Tell us a little about yourself?

The impression most clients have on the role of the toastmaster is often old fashioned, regimental and starchy. It has always been important to me to be different.

I didn’t want to be just another supplier to someone’s wedding; I wanted to play a part of it, where I can use my expertise on helping them with the running of their day.

Each wedding is so different and I accommodate each one individually, whether they want it very formal, informal or a mixture of both. With a military background and as a current serving firefighter, my experience of the unexpected is taken all in my stride, the qualities of being first aid trained, Health and safety qualified is somewhat appealing to a lot of venues and clients.

Do you have a uniform? How do you dress?

Yes I do have a uniform; I currently have 3 different tailcoats, the traditional red, a sophisticated black or a baby pink. (A somewhat unique request I had a few years ago from a same-sex couple that asked if I would consider fitting in with their colour scheme. I, of course, obliged!)

Alternatively I have a very smart 3 piece dark tailored suit for a little less formal that I wear mainly as a compere or for corporate functions.

What time do you usually arrive on the day?

For a standard wedding 2pm until 8pm; I am usually at the venue an hour and a half beforehand, conducting my checks and cross-referencing my Itinerary with the venue’s.

What are your primary duties? How much of the day will you be there for?

My role as your Wedding Toastmaster is unlimited. The most important thing is that I will officiate your wedding to your personal style.

On the day, I arrive an hour and a half before everyone arrives, making sure everything is correct and in place. I will make myself available to assist with buttonholes, corsages, and ushering, this takes the pressure of your groomsmen.

I will liaise closely with the venue staff in order to address your all your requirements as well as all of your other suppliers involved in the day, if requested by yourselves.

As your guests arrive at the venue, I will be on hand to greet them collection cards, gifts and directing them to the cloakroom.

I will assist the photographer with photos to ensure the correct people are available for the photos to allow a smooth process and keeping everything to time.

As your guests enter your wedding breakfast, I will be on hand to provide information and direct them to their seats and will announce the top table into the room.

I’m happy to announce the speeches in the order of the speaker and the cutting of the cake, liaising with the photographer to ensure the best shots are taken.

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