As we enter the new year, January really is the engagement season with so many proposals over the festive period. So, before you go and choose your dress design, book the band or choose your floral designs it really is important to find your venue. Whether this is a country manor house, stately home, hotel or a marquee wedding in your back garden.
Once you have your venue booked, you can then set the tone and ensure the basic groundworks have been covered to ensure your wedding planning is a success.
I thought this would be an ideal time to introduce you to just a small selection of the some of the venues in and around Sussex and Surrey. Having established my business as a wedding planner in 2011 and being in the wedding industry for nearly a decade, my experience and knowledge of the area is vast. In this selection of venues you will find many options and if you are opting for a marquee wedding then your choices are endless.
Great Fosters, Egham, Surrey
Great Fosters is truly one of the most romantic wedding venues in Surrey. Set amongst 50 acres of stunning gardens and parkland in Egham, it is the perfect setting for a wedding. In addition to hosting wedding receptions, the hotel is licensed to hold civil ceremonies and weddings, both indoors and on the lawn.
The Tithe Barn can seat up to 180 guests during the day and I was lucky to work with Angela and Chris who had this number of guests with a further 50 guests for the evening. The gardens are simply stunning and ideal to capture some beautiful images, some can be seen below.
Image Credit – Paul Read Photography
Great Fosters is ideal if you’d like accommodation for you and your guests with a great selection of rooms and if you have a large group staying, why not all have a private breakfast together the following morning?
Botleys Mansion, Chertsey, Surrey
Botleys Mansion is an elegant, exclusive use wedding venue located in the Surrey countryside. It is licensed for civil wedding ceremonies both inside and out and offers a choice of stylish celebration and entertaining spaces in which to host your ultra-glamorous wedding. With capacities ranging from 60 to 250 across various rooms in the house, Botleys Mansion also offers flexibility along with an impeccable service when it comes to hosting your celebration at this wow-factor wedding venue.
Located just 30 minutes from London and set amid 56 acres of rolling Surrey parkland, this magnificent country house wedding venue marries history with the absolute best in modern style. It has been tastefully and delicately refurbished over the years and offers a multitude of options when it comes to celebrating your nuptials. The venue oozes elegance and charm from the moment you drive through the entrance gates and down the wondrous driveway – passing the fountain, mounting the sweeping stone staircase and entering the front door every detail is breathtaking as you enjoy a crescendo of classic elegance. Exquisite gold-leaf adorns the walls, doorways and ceilings, sparkling reflection of the stunning crystal chandeliers and, outside, the grounds and perfectly manicured gardens are the perfect backdrop for your wedding photography.
Stacey and Scott had a late spring wedding with close friends and family witnessing their wedding ceremony in the Green Room followed by drinks reception in the grounds with a fabulous wedding breakfast in the Atrium. This room is so bright and airy with its gorgeous chandeliers catching the light and stunning staircase to make a real entrance.
Image Credit – Craig Payne Photography
Brookfield Barn is a new wedding venue for Horsham and West Sussex. The property underwent a full renovation from Jan 2015 which was followed by the building of the handcrafted oak-framed barn, with works completed in May 2016.
They are licensed for civil ceremonies – both the barn complete with its stunning views through the large bi-fold doors and the outside oak gazebo with the picturesque views along the lake. The choice is yours! They offer fully exclusive use for your day including the whole grounds and our small golf course!
There is a large bar and lounge to provide an additional stunning contemporary space for you and your guests complete with a south facing terrace with both firepit / ice-bucket tables and a relaxed seating area.
I have been lucky enough to have worked here a number of times as a preferred supplier. Below are a just a couple of the images of the various weddings that I have loved being part of.
Hyde Estate, Handcross, West Sussex
Turn in along a winding drive, among the ancient trees of a private estate where deer roam. Discover their gardens, picturesque in their natural beauty, and then imagine personalising the space to your exact requirements. You can make all your own choices and I love the fact is that they only have very few weddings here every year making it very exclusive and it really is a blank canvas.
The site itself is tailor-made to provide you with all the practical requirements you will need, without limiting your options. A hard standing car park sits next to the site, with easy access for generators, portable loos, and other wheeled facilities. A wheelchair-suitable ramp and path provide access to an area under the trees with room for any size and style of marquee up to 100ft, with a gently sloping lawn down to the lake shore. A small wood-chipped path leads down to a gate into the private garden itself, where you can wander to your heart’s content. There are a wealth of photo opportunities – a double swing, a Monet-style bridge, a flowered wedding arch…
I had the pleasure of working Charlie and Patrick with my full wedding planning services to create a perfect day for them. If Charlie had her way, there would not have been a marquee – she wanted no structure at all as she loved the setting so much. However, practicalities kicked in and of course, a covering of some sort was required for their 100 guests!
It was so important to Charlie and Patrick that they had a personal ceremony, something that involved their two young children and had real meaning to them both so decided on having a blessing under the oak tree overlooking the amazing views of the lakes. They wrote their own vows and had a very good friend conduct the ceremony for them.
If you’d like to hear more about this stunning wedding, please see my previous blog on this gorgeous setting.
Image Credit – Jacob Malinski Photography
Grittenham Barn, Petworth, West Sussex
Grittenham Barn is a traditional stone Sussex barn with breathtaking views over the South Downs. It has been immaculately restored and features a stunning central fireplace. Grittenham is set in the heart of the West Sussex countryside between Petworth and Midhurst. The site predates the 17th Century and is mentioned in the Domesday Book. The barn, farmhouse and outbuildings are Grade II listed and this beautiful property is set in stunning gardens with a lake, orchard and woodland.
With this venue, they only allow one event per weekend so this allows plenty of time for setting up and clearing after. You really can make it your own space inside and out.
I worked with Rebecca and Adam for over a year planning for their big day and so much thought had gone in to the day with so many personal touches. Here are just a small selection of pictures capturing the beautiful wedding here with a previous blog over here.
Image Credit – Hayley Rose Photography
Upwaltham Barn, Chichester, West Sussex
Upwaltham Barns is one of the prettiest barn wedding venues I have worked at. These traditional Sussex flint long barns are perfect for a relaxed country wedding and are set in the South Downs National Park next to the historic Goodwood Estate and are just half an hour from the coast.
Having the space of the two barns is just fabulous; with the East Barn being licensed for civil ceremonies followed by a drinks reception in the court yard is a perfect setting for your guests to enjoy canapes and bubbles! The wedding breakfast then follows in to the South Barn with the adjoining Stable bar and they even have a lovely Moroccan themed outdoor snug.
Sarah and Duncan celebrated their wedding here at Upwaltham Barns for a late spring wedding and despite the rain, the sun made an appearance just in time for the drinks reception. To see some more on this venue, please do pop over to my venues page.
Image Credit – Barry Page Photography
Woldingham School, Woldingham, Surrey
The magnificent mansion in its beautiful grounds at Marden Park provides the ideal unique Surrey wedding venue . The stunning house is nestled within a 700 acre estate in a serene valley near the Surrey / Kent border. They are licensed for civil wedding ceremonies and also have a chapel for Catholic ceremonies.
Such a beautiful setting as you drive up the long driveway, you come across this magnificent mansion nestled away in the Surrey countryside. This venue holds a little place in my heart as it is where I married nearly 9 years ago.
We had drinks and canapes outside in the stunning gardens with my favourite area being the pergola walk. The gardens have ample photo opportunities and is a photographers dream.
You have exclusive use of the venue with a number of elegant rooms and some of these rooms are also licensed for ceremonies. They make ideal spaces for drinks reception, music room for the band or DJ and the dining hall with its wooden panelled walls and grand fireplace with stunning windows makes it a perfect place to host your wedding reception.
This is only a very small selection of some of the venues in and around Sussex and Surrey but hopefully gives you some ideas of the types of venues available. If you’d like to find out more or look at further options then I would love to chat. Let’s meet for a coffee and see how we can best work together whether you are at the start of your wedding planning journey or perhaps need some additional support as the day draws nearer. It is so important to me that the wedding planning journey is fun, calm and enjoyable. I have a love for marquee weddings and events or spaces that you can create your own look and running of the day, whether it be hiring an exclusive country manor house for the weekend or a large marquee on your lawn to really add that personal touch.
You will have ultimate control of your special event but know that you have my full guidance, trust and support throughout the planning and on the day.
If you’ like to chat more about how we can work together then please do get in contact.