Hall: weeks of work paid off with Schiffer picture
East Anglian Daily Times photographer Michael Hall scooped the world’s press – by getting a picture of supermodel Claudia Schiffer on her wedding day.
The German beauty went to huge lengths to avoid being photographed after selling exclusive rights to her wedding to celebrity magazine Hello!
Security guards covered Schiffer with two blankets and a golf umbrella to stop anyone seeing her Valentino bridal gown as she left the 14th century Swan Hotel at Lavenham, Suffolk.
Schiffer was booed by villagers who were upset by her behaviour after they had waited two hours in the rain to catch a glimpse of her setting off to St George’s Church, Shimpling.
Most photographers only got a view of her foot in a cream-coloured Jimmy Choo shoe, as she climbed into a silver Bentley car with its windows blacked out by curtains.
But Hall took his world exclusive picture when a blanket was lowered for a second to reveal the bride in her floral headgear on Saturday afternoon. He said: "The world’s media pack was there and I was fortunate to be in the right place at the right time. I was pretty chuffed when I saw I had got her.
"There were loads of photographers and a huge crowd of locals outside the hotel when the car drew up and she came out of the tradesmens’ entrance covered in blankets.
"The crowd started booing her and I got myself in position on the other side of the car. I managed to snap just two frames of her as she ducked down to get into the Bentley.
"The guards just slipped up for a moment – but it was all that I needed. It is a great feeling to be the only one to get the picture and have it published before Hello! magazine comes out."
Schiffer, who has made millions from being one of the world’s most photographed women, was driven through a rear entrance of St George’s church before she exchanged vows with British film producer Matthew Vaughn.
She also got Suffolk County Council to close a footpath on her land for 12 hours to stop anyone catching a glimpse of her reception at her new 16th century manor house, Coldham Hall, at nearby Stanningfield.
A team of private security guards and 20 police ringed the church and the house, which she recently bought for £5m to ensure her privacy.
East Anglian Daily Times editor Terry Hunt said: "Michael has spent weeks working on the story about Claudia buying a house up here and planning to marry in Suffolk.
"It is great that all his hard work has been rewarded with a world exclusive picture.
"It proves that local papers can compete with the best."