Phwoar! Well one thing I will say is being a wedding blogger does not necessarily make all aspects of planning a wedding easy. Finding the perfect wedding venue? Not easy.
It was the first thing we wanted to book after getting engaged as I already knew they get booked up quite quickly. Your wedding venue choice dictates so much of the ambience. It says a lot about your taste as a couple.
Also please note that in order to get an honest review I did not tell these venues I was wedding blogger, though they did figure it out later. I am aware that I am very lucky and was afforded many priviledges because of what I do but
Just to recap, this was the theme we were working with…..
1. We are looking for a venue that fit 400 – 500 guests while having plenty of character and a good enough dance floor for an additional 100 evening guests.
2. We also wanted it to feel intimate and have a lot of vintage character. So no banqueting suites or town halls that look too much like town halls.
3. We wanted a venue that would allow us to have our own caterer oh and a big enough kitchen for the caterer to prep.
4. We also wanted a venue with parking so that our guests did not have to pay too much for or if at all.
5. We wanted a venue beautiful on the outside AND on the inside.
6. Not too far outside of London so we could get married at our home Church in London. London wedding venue prices are expensively expensive. Did I say expensive?
7. and not more than £7000. It seemed like mission impossible. Please bear in mind all the amounts discussed have upped themselves (gulp) in the last year!
Bear in mind these prices include the time we needed to set up and set down.
Price: £10k approx for a peak Summer Saturday
(This was my absolute dream wedding venue and the first place we visited!)
- Stunningly beautiful grounds. The house is full of intricate details and so much of the original old furnishings and mouldings.
- Great service. Very kind and thorough and answered all of our questions. Not snobby at all very kind. Plus they had deers….
- Great knowledge on cultural weddings. I cannot stress the importance of this enough. Nigerians statistically spend close to double the amount of money on their weddings than other British counterparts. It’s not good enough to be in the industry and not be well versed on the needs of the cultures you are most likely to come across.
- The price point which was quite bit over budget but more importantly
- Too far away from our Church venue. We would have to hire a coach for our guests…
Addington Palace, Croydon London
Price: £9k approx for a peak Summer Saturday
- Marquee included. It is one of the only Estate houses with a marquee included and is located within London. The Marquee has a capacity of 1000 people.
- Golden beautiful chairs included so no need to hire.
- Ample car parking.
- Beautiful grounds, estate house overlooks many green pastures.
- Estate house in London!? Rarer than chocolate cake….
- Service was terrible, truly terrible. They behaved as if we didn’t have the money to pay for the venue which we could have uncomfortably stretched too, but that’s really not the point. No body should be made to feel like a time waster in any area of customer service, anywhere. Feel free to contact me Addington! Such a shame as the grounds are beautiful. But not worth it for that service.
- Money Issues. I recently spoke to a bride who three months after her wedding is still awaiting her deposit! Her experience with them was so bad she contemplated changing the venue a month before the wedding, after handing out invites!
Walthamstow Assembly Halls
Price: 7k approx for a Summer Saturday Wedding
- Fabulous exterior.Beautiful Roman building with the original exterior glory. Has plenty of character and charm with gold trimmings. Large windows allow light in. Large stage perfect for an elaborate top/sweetheart table.
- 450 capacity with a great dance floor space.
- Water fountain, because it’s just cool.
- Fully equipped kitchen external caterers can use.
- Great service, the venue is very easy to get hold of.
- 200 car parking spaces, no charge.
- Allows external catering.
- Distance from the Church.
- Wood everywhere, It can be difficult to soften up the look of a venue with a lot of wood. And by difficult I mean nightmare decor wise. The decor would have to compliment or stand out to work. Decorating would be rather expensive to say the least.
- Unsuitable chairs! Look more office than pretty. We would have to hire 450 chairs!
- No greenery, super important to me! I want forest and plants!
The Decorium,London- Wood Green Wedding
Price: 7k approx for an Summer Saturday Wedding
- Grand stage area which is perfect for the couples from cultures with traditionally extravagant sweetheart tables. Like my Nigerian background.
- They have by far the very best lighting system around, fully customisable to suit your colour scheme and can be dimmed or extensified throughout your event.
- Super flexible on the external catering and a great mass plate cleaning system that I really wanted to play with.
- Easy to get to via public transport.
- Added extras! As far as I remember I believe they offer either napkins or cutlery for your guests? Worth confirming!
- No allocated parking for guests. Small area for parking for bride and groom and family in front. Not too far from a car park, short walk.
- Surroundings aren’t especially pretty, though there is a small park for a few pictures.
- The carpet! My, my my! You can forgive a lot of things is capacity and beauty is offered. Stunning venue but the carpets pattern is so loud and bold it would drowns out any softer colour scheme. Very annoying. I can understand why, with a venue that large and busy you would need flooring that does not show up mess but the look….got…..killed. Works for bolder colour schemes.
Price: 6.5k (recurring special offer) approx for a Summer Wedding.
- Great Marquee venue with two large spaces, one smaller (fits 250) the other much larger ( fits 1000).
- All white everywhere and modern crystal swirl chandeliers. As there is no obvious colours or character traits the venue is fully customisable for all colour schemes.
- Ample car parking.
- Beautiful grounds and lake with plenty of photo opportunities.
- Not many actually! As it is not a heritage venue it is a blank space open to interpretation which is great for some. For me, it lacked the character the theme of my wedding needed. I also have a thing for heritage venues with a little more history.
- Complicated Drive from our Church venue.
- Back then they were very picky about external caterers. I’ve heard conflicting reports since then. Seems some brides can get away with it.
- Difficult to communicate with and difficult to reach. Ouch.
- Car parking is on site but you still have to pay?!
These were our options? You will know what we picked later but I really hope this helps some brides out there! Looking for a venue can take time but just be patient. When you find the right one it is worth the wait.