Choosing where to hold your wedding is one of the biggest decisions when wedding planning; church or hotel? Registry office or stately home? There are so many options and the possibilities are seemingly endless.
When we first started planning Nick was adamant that he didn’t want to get married in a church; he’s a scientist (I don’t really have to say any more than that!). Not really knowing what I wanted at that moment in time, I agreed. And so our search began.
We looked at a number of different types of venue; from old hotels to beautiful wine centres. Our guest list was pushing 100 at this point and we knew we couldn’t whittle it down too much (as we’d be inviting a lot of my family and not a lot of friends) so a registry office was out of the question.
We came across some gorgeous hotels; one we booked provisionally for our ceremony, as we panicked and felt we had to book somewhere. We kept being told that everywhere was getting booked up fast (this was over a year in advance). Hotels are great as you can usually invite everyone you’d like to, although things like food and alcohol are generally more expensive.
We didn’t look at any racecourses, but we do have some nearby; Kempton Park for example. The great thing about racecourses, as with hotels, is that you can have hundreds of guests if you want to, although that obviously comes with a hefty price tag! A lot of racecourse weddings can be held outside as well which, providing the weather is good, can be lovely.
I mentioned above that we looked at a beautiful wine centre. It had the most gorgeous barn where the ceremony is held, and a stunning rose garden for drinks and photos afterwards… Oh, and space for 100+ guests. It was simply amazing and oh-so romantic. However, that sort of beauty and decadence comes at a very large price, and it was one that we just couldn’t justify.
In the end, after a lot of thought, and after attending some amazing church weddings, we decided to look at the church local to our reception venue. The church is very old, but incredibly beautiful. We held my Father’s funeral there almost 14 years ago and in someways I want to get married there because I’d like to feel close to him on my wedding day (I know it’s a bit silly, but sentiment and all that). It’s also only a walk down the road to our reception venue, so we’ll be saving money on transport. We can invite everyone we’d like to invite to the church and it’s substantially cheaper than doing the hotel-registrar thing.
Nick finally came around to the idea, and after meeting with the Vicar we decided that we couldn’t get married anywhere else; a church wedding makes a marriage seem more official – I think it’s the spiritual element.
How did you decide where to get married? Was one of you adamant you didn’t want a church wedding?