Choosing a wedding venue
Deciding where to get married and choosing your venue can be a minefield. Your venue is central to so much within your wedding, the budget, the look and feel of the photos, the number of people you are able to invite…the list goes on so choosing a venue is important but can be rather stressful.
There are so many traditions around getting married and for some people, getting married in the place their parents and grandparents got married makes their day even more special. Perhaps in a beautiful village church where you grew up. There is so much to think about and so many places to choose from when choosing a venue, where do you start?
Things to think about before choosing a wedding venue
So, first things first, before evening thinking about choosing a wedding venue, what kind of ceremony would you like? If you are thinking a religious ceremony you will have to book the ceremony and reception venues separately. There are some stunning churches out there with amazing architecture that will make for great photos but don’t forget you need to get from A to B, but there are also some great transport options out there to get everyone where they need to be. I did see on Pinterest the other day (yes I know I’m obsessed) a couple walking with all of their guests with balloons, what a cute idea.
Do you have a specific date that you want to get married? Perhaps you want to get married on the anniversary of the date you met, or got engaged, perhaps you want to get married close to Christmas or New Year’s Eve. Very romantic but venues do get booked up quickly and many well over a year in advance, some venues may also only do weddings on certain days so this is something you will have to consider if you already have a date in mind and may narrow down your list.
Work out your guest list. When choosing a wedding venue, look at their guide as to how many people they can comfortably hold and the different layouts you will be able to have. This will give you an indication as to whether the venue you are looking at is too small for your wedding party or maybe it could be too big for you all. You don’t want to look lost so even rough numbers will help you narrow it down.
What is your budget? When choosing a wedding venue this can again help you to narrow down your list. Your priority may not actually be your venue, It may be a designer dress or killer pair of shoes and so the venue plays second fiddle to this. Remember it’s all about you and what is important to making your day special. Don’t be influenced by others, you don’t want any regrets so if a dress trumps the venue then so be it, there are lots of places that don’t break the bank.
How your venue will fit with your theme? Are you wanting something elegant and Gatsbyesque, do you want to get married in beautiful gardens surrounded by flowers, or perhaps you would prefer to get married on a beach, with the sea lapping at your feet, a beautiful castle in the country or perhaps somewhere historical. My cousin got married at Leeds Castle in Kent and after the photos we all had a private tour, it gave us all something to chat about that night. Great day!
Historical wedding venues
Do you want somewhere with history? At the moment I am totally obsessed with Hever Castle, the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, the second wife of Henry VIII. It doesn’t get much more historical than that. There are many beautiful stately homes and castles around the country. A couple of weeks ago I met up with the wonderful Helen of Honeysuckle and Castle for coffee, they work with four beautiful National Trust venues in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire. Or why not check out the English Heritage website for some more inspiration.
Unique wedding venues
Perhaps you are choosing a venue that may be different and unique? For all you plane enthusiasts, have you thought about getting married in front of the Vulcan Bomber, or perhaps trains are your thing and you would like to consider getting married at the National Railway Museum. If you are after stunning views and iconic skylines, how about The Gherkin in London. Imagine watching the sun set whilst sipping champagne surrounded by friends and family. Or perhaps a castle in Scotland? There are several aquariums around the country where you can get married, why not check out The Deep, perhaps The Natural History Museum, OMG there would be dinosaurs at your wedding! How cool is that!
When choosing a wedding venue it is about you and what you want, where you want to marry, but don’t forget about your guests, I know it’s all about you, but you don’t want to be on your own, you will need to think about how far they may have to travel and whether there will be accommodation nearby for them. Will they all be able to get to the far reaches of Scotland in the middle of winter?
Questions to ask your wedding venue
Regardless of which venue you choose, there will be some questions that you may want to ask. What time does the bar close, what time do the guests have to leave, are there any restrictions on the use of candles and confetti? Can you have your own band or DJ, what rooms will you have and will you have exclusive use and make sure you read the small print.
When thinking about choosing a wedding venue, don’t panic and get stressed. There are so many to choose from but there is also help and advice. So rather than getting in a tizzy, why not drop me a line and we can have a chat and perhaps I can narrow it down for you or maybe recommend somewhere you haven’t thought about.
Where would you like to get married?