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Finding the perfect wedding venue is one of the most important steps in planning your special day. It sets the tone for your entire event and can make or break your dream celebration. That’s why it’s essential to ask all the right questions before you settle on a venue – so you know exactly what you’re getting into! Here are seven vital questions to ask when searching for a wedding venue that will ensure you get everything on your wish list & more. 

1. Are you licensed for civil ceremonies?

If you’re hoping to have your official ceremony and wedding reception under one roof, you’ll want to make sure that your chosen venue is licensed! Whether it’s a wedding in a hotel, manor house, or even a barn, most venues do offer this now and they’ll usually have at least one space that’s licensed. If they don’t have a wedding licence but you’ve fallen in love with the venue, you could always opt for a celebrant-led ceremony on the day and have a religious or civil ceremony elsewhere shared with a smaller group of loved ones.  

2. What amenities does this venue offer? 

When considering any potential wedding venues, make sure your package includes all of the essential items such as tables, chairs, linens, lighting and sound equipment if you’ll need it. You should also inquire about additional services like catering options or an on-site coordinator who can help you with setup and breakdown of decorations and other bits and pieces before, during and after your wedding day. 

3. Is there enough space for my guest count? 

The size of your guest list is a crucial part of choosing a wedding venue, and it’s a good idea to have a general idea on numbers when approaching the venue. Make sure there is plenty of room for everyone to mingle comfortably without feeling cramped or overcrowded. We’d always recommend visiting each location once or twice so that you can visualise the layout and where everyone could fit in each area during both the wedding breakfast and the evening reception. This helps to make sure it works for you and allows for plenty of wiggle room if numbers increase closer to the big day. 

4. Are there restrictions on decorating, music, catering etc.? 

You want your special day to reflect who you are as a couple – which means having some freedom when it comes to decorating & music selection at the very least! Find out ahead of time whether there are any restrictions regarding these things (or anything else) so that there are no disappointing surprises later down the line – nobody wants their dream reception ruined by unexpected rules! 

5. What type of insurance do I need? 

Whilst wedding public liability insurance isn’t a legal requirement in the UK, a lot of wedding venues will ask you to purchase it well in advance of your wedding day. Check with them first about what kind they accept and how much coverage may be required. It’s always a really good idea to take out wedding insurance ASAP to make sure that you and your bookings are fully protected, that way you won’t find yourself scrambling at the last minute trying to figure out how to cover any hiccups – big or small!

6. How far in advance do I need to reserve my date? 

While some places may allow last-minute or whirlwind wedding reservations if they have availability, many wedding venues require one, two or even three years notice in order to secure desired dates. Either way, it’s always best to plan ahead to avoid disappointment further down the road, especially since certain months tend to fill up quickly due seasonal demand!

Some wedding venues may allow you to provisionally hold a date for a limited time for free whilst you weigh up your options, whilst others will request a refundable or non-refundable deposit. If you’ve yet to settle on your dream location, this is an important question to ask to make sure you don’t miss out on your ideal dates. 

7. Is the wedding venue available for exclusive hire?

If a venue has multiple ceremonial and reception spaces to choose from, they may allow more than one couple to get married on the same day. Things like who else is permitted on the grounds of the venue and the times your suppliers are allowed in and out will also vary depending on your wedding venue. If you want to make sure your wedding is private, you’ll need to check that your booking covers ‘exclusive use’. 

This is especially important if you’re considering a hotel wedding venue or an outdoor wedding venue. However, just because a venue doesn’t offer ‘exclusive use’, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll have to share your special day with another couple, it may just mean that hotel guests will still be on the grounds. Double-check what restrictions will be in place and who will be allowed to go where. 

Asking these seven questions before booking any wedding venue will help ensure that everything runs smoothly once the big day finally arrives – leaving only happy memories behind long after the party ends! So, take time to research different wedding locations thoroughly until you find one that fits both your budget and style perfectly… then sit back, relax and enjoy your beautiful journey towards happily ever after! 

What do we offer at Wivenhoe House?

Thinking of booking your wedding at Wivenhoe House and wondering what our answers are to those all-important questions? Well, we can guarantee that you would never have to share your special day with another couple here, as we only host one wedding per day. We also have a range of stunning spaces licensed for marriage at Wivenhoe House for you to choose from, including both outdoor weddings and indoor options.

So, whether you’re organising a small, intimate ceremony or sharing your dream wedding with a larger gathering of loved ones, Wivenhoe House is the perfect wedding venue for any couple! Take a look at our range of carefully crafted all-inclusive wedding packages, or get in touch with any questions you may have.

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