Posted: Sunday November 03, 2013
For many newly engaged couples, the question of where to host their big day is top of a very long list of decisions, with setting a date coming in a close second. Very often these two decisions go hand in hand, with venue availability depending on date and vice versa. But before the bride and groom decide on a venue, there are a number of things to consider.
Firstly, do you want a venue that can host both the wedding service and the reception? Many venues now have the ability to hold both, with either a room or outside space dedicated to wedding services. If you want the venue to do both you need to consider whether space available for the service big enough? The number of church weddings is beginning to rise again so if you choose this option you will need to think about the distance to your preferred wedding reception venue. Is it within easy travelling distance? If not consider how will your guests get between the two?
Budget should also be top of the list to consider before booking a venue. The cost of hiring a venue can vary considerably depending on size, location and package. If budget is really tight, consider a mid-week wedding which are normally cheaper and therefore your options around venue are increased.
You then need to think about the size of your wedding. You may have your heart set on a location but if it’s not big enough for the amount of guests you want to invite you may have to think again. At the other end of the spectrum, is your wedding reception venue too big for your party? You certainly don’t want your room to look empty on your wedding day, so if this is the case but you have decided it is the venue for you, ask if part of the room can be screened off.
It’s traditional to choose to get married in the area the bride is from, but with many people moving away through work, university or relationships few people now stick to this tradition. You will have to consider where the majority of your guests are travelling from, and whether there is accommodation available nearby if needed. Also think about the cost of this, and whether you will pay or whether your guests will be expected to pay. If it’s the second, you will need to bear in mind whether your guests can afford this and whether it will put them off. The same can be said if you choose to get married abroad. This can be an amazing experience for many couples and involve less organisation than a wedding at home, but you will need to consider if the people you want to share your day with you can afford to go abroad.
The type of venue will also play a big role in the decision making. Do you want a modern feel to your day or a classic country wedding, or something completely unique? There’s a massive range of venues holding weddings, from country houses, restaurants, football stadiums and even tourist attractions such as Wookey Hole now host weddings. You should ensure your venue fits with any theme you might have – there’s no point trying to hosting a traditional country style wedding at a football stadium!
Finally, once you have chosen a venue make sure you meet with the staff responsible for your big day before you pay your deposit. Most venues will give you a designated point of contact and you have to trust this person with your big day and getting on with them is essential. A good relationship with this person will help eliminate much of the stress involved in organising a wedding, and will ensure your day is one to remember – for the right reasons.
Braxted Park is a beautiful wedding venue set in the heart of the Essex countryside, just half hour from London. The stunning Queen Anne’s house is set in 500 acres of unique parkland, and its Pavilion can hold weddings up to 350 people, with dedicated spaces inside and outside licensed to host wedding services.