Updated: Feb 22
When it comes to wedding venues, Cheshire has some of the best variety around. From gorgeous stately homes, historic manor houses, beautiful rustic barns to grand castles. Your options are endless.
One of the first decisions a couple will make will be where and when to get married. This is no easy task as there are many factors to take into consideration. Are you looking for a civil ceremony? is the venue licensed? How many guests are you anticipating inviting? is the venue able to cater for that number? Definitely think about these two factors before you set out on your quest to find the dream venue.
Another factor to think about is how popular is your dream wedding venue? One of the most common hurdles I face as a wedding planner is availability especially on short lead weddings.
Popular wedding venues will be booked up between one to two years in advance. It's even been know to extend to three years at more popular, sought after venues. So this is definitely worth considering when you're planning begins.
So how to find the perfect venue?
So you've decided on the type of marriage that you want and the number of guests you're anticipating inviting so let the fun begin!
You may have already chosen your dream venue well before your engagement but its always a great idea to take a look at other options. You may be surprised!
First step to take (I know this is pretty obvious) is to take a look on google, a look at direct websites but also look on directories like Hitched and Confetti. The great benefit of looking on an online directory is the reviews. It is very unlikely that you will see these on venues direct websites.
Another great benefit of using a directory is the 'filter' options. This will really save you time in terms of showing you which venues can accommodate your anticipated numbers and requirements.
Once you have taken a look around the internet and done your research, the next step would be to arrange a viewing. I would recommend shortlisting your viewing venues to a maximum of four to five.
Let's take a look around!
So the day has finally arrived, you've booked in viewings at your dream wedding venues.
Remember to make sure you have an estimate number of guests and a selection of dates you have in mind. Preferred date, second choice and third choice.
When you arrive always pay attention to the car park and entrance, is there enough parking for your guests? does the entrance have original wow factor or can it be created?
You will be shown around the venue by the in-house wedding coordinator. They will show you around the venue and run through your options.
One thing I always request when doing venue visits, is to be shown around as if I am a guest at a wedding. This will give you a great understanding on how your guest's will feel, will they find the ceremony room, wedding breakfast room and evening reception room with ease or will you have to supply additional signage? do the function rooms have a nice flow and are the amenities close by?
Ask to be shown what is included within the hire price. It's always a good idea to see the cutlery, crockery, glassware and linen to make sure it's of good standard and if it matches the vision you have for your wedding. This will allow you to determine if you need to hire it in or not.
Once your show around has been completed, you will then go through the brochure. This will allow you to truly understand the offering that each venue has. You will discuss food and beverage options and any special conditions like minimum numbers.
Some key questions to ask are:
- Are your dates available, if so what are the minimum numbers?
- Is the venue exclusive to you or is it open to the public and other guests?
- Does the venue only have one wedding per day or multiple?
- What is the deposit amount to secure the date and what are the payment terms? (This is extremely important as this is part of your terms and conditions)
- Maximum capacity for civil ceremony, wedding breakfast and evening reception
- Accommodation, is there accommodation onsite and if so how many rooms will be available for you? (This will help you understand if you can have your key members of the party staying with you the night of your wedding)
- Any restrictions on decor, entertainment or suppliers?
- What is the cancellation policy and charges?
Once you have found the perfect dream venue, before signing on the dotted line and placing that deposit down to secure your date arrange another visit. Take family members and friends around, arrange to have lunch. This will give you the opportunity to see the standard of food and service. It will also help to make that important decision.
GOOD LUCK AND ENJOY! x
'Finding that perfect venue is probably one of the best tasks I have as wedding planner, Showing my client the venue for the first time and hearing 'it takes my breath away' never get tired'
If you would like help sourcing that breathtaking wedding venue and planning your dream wedding, make sure to check out our services section at on our website.