Choosing your wedding venue is one of the first big decisions you and your new husband-to-be have to make together (read: exciting, stressful, time-consuming, but worth it!)
Have you always had a clear vision of a boutique hotel, a country church and a rustic barn after? Or have you been dreaming of the elegant stately home? We love Hedsor House, pictured above.
This step will help steer the direction and your future vision of the wedding. Just make sure you and your new fiance start communicating at this stage… we promise it will make things easier later on!

Your Ceremony

Where you will be exchanging your vows is an obvious place to start… this is why you are getting married, remember? A large number of couples still to choose to marry in a Church, with some couples having a particular Church in mind that is close to them or their family. There are a couple requirements so do check in advance you are eligible to marry in that particular church, for example a Church of England Church would ask that you, your parents, or your grandparents have a connection to the church or the parish.

If you are not concerned with a religious venue, you still have some thinking to do! You may be able to have a civil ceremony at your reception venue, just ensure to check they are licensed to do so before hand. The benefits of this include less traveling for your guests on the day, and one less expense on vehicles for your bridal party between locations. Your venue might be able to offer you a choice of an indoor or an outdoor ceremony, perhaps.

Le Manoir

Your Venue

Let’s start with the obvious bits; what type of venue are you looking for? Have a rough idea of this before you start looking as it may help to narrow down your search initially. Don’t forget there are more costs involved than just the hire cost: proportion a rough section of your budget to your venue search and this will also help you not get too carried away. Budget for catering and drinks packages, and don’t forget to ask if they will provide table numbers, a cake stand etc at an extra cost.

Some important things to remember:

  • Does the hire cost include VAT? Are you restricted to their in-house or recommended caterer?
  • Does their music or alcohol license finish early than you were expecting?
  • Can they seat 50 people at the ceremony, but 150 in the evening; how does this work with your guest list?
    Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, pictured above, is one of our recommend venues and is perfect for the smaller, intimate wedding as they can cater for up to 50 guests.
  • Are candles, chinese lanterns, and fireworks allowed?
  • If your guests will be arriving by coach, is there sufficient turning and parking space?
  • If accommodation is necessary for your guests from out of town, check to see the availability nearby
  • Do you have access the day before to set up and decorate?

Don’t forget to check to see if your preferred wedding date is still available; popular venues have been known to have almost all Summer month Saturdays booked up, up to 18 months in advance! Blenheim Palace, pictured below, is a stunning choice of venue.

Blenheim Palace

But most importantly, in amongst all the boring/necessary/legal questions, don’t forget to love your ceremony and venue locations. You will have these places in mind when you choose your dress, discuss with the florist, and brainstorm the decor. These places are the backdrop to your memories and your photographs, you will have a special connection with these places forever.

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