As a Celebrant I get to visit many fabulous venues all over Warwickshire and beyond. With so much choice on offer in the Midlands, it can be hard to know which place is right for your big day. If it helps, here are my top five venues with the reasons why I think they’re so fantastic.
- The Billesley Manor Hotel – https://www.billesleymanor.com/weddings/
The first venue I have chosen is a fabulous 16th century manor house in the countryside just outside Stratford. This has made it to the top of my list because it has gorgeous grounds, topiary (or nice bushes to you and me), glorious fountains and a lovely drinks terrace. It’s great for indoor and outdoor ceremonies. If you like old fashioned yet warm, this is perfect. It exudes classical elegance.
The team on site really make it special. They are absolutely professional offering a five star service and lashings of luxury. And what could be more romantic than tying the knot in the same location as it’s believed William Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway?
I have conducted fabulous ceremonies at this venue. Anesh and Tina renewed their vows outside in the beautiful grounds, and Helen and Steve opted to celebrate their wedding day inside the beautiful Topiary Garden Suite room. There’s a lot of choice.
- Stone Siding – https://www.stonesidingevents.com
My second choice – a family run farm in Northamptonshire – could not be more different. This is a rural wedding and events venue in the heart of the Northamptonshire countryside, just over the border from Warwickshire, where I live. It is run by a lovely family – Linsey and her husband. They are so kind and helpful.
It offers a blank canvas field meaning it’s certainly very flexible, and with fabulous views over fields and hills it really is in the country. So if you want a festival wedding, an outdoor party, or a rustic or boho theme, this is a must-view location. This relaxed venue would be perfect whatever time of the day you want to tie the knot.
I was the Celebrant for Amber and Jon a few years ago who used this great location to fabulous effect, having a wedding with a real festival feel. You may have seen the photos on my website – it’s the wedding in the field with the wonderful views.
- Bourton Hall Wedding Venue – https://www.bourton-hall.co.uk/venue/
This is a beautiful country mansion built in the style of an 18th Century Italian Villa, and the bonus is it is just a few miles from my home. The views from the garden were a fabulous surprise as I walked around the corner of the building. You can see for miles across the spectacular countryside, right across to Draycote Water.
The most breathtaking and atmospheric ‘space’ in this venue has to be the former Catholic chapel with its marble panelled walls, and ornate wood and gold leaf ceiling, And the mirrors are amazing! It really is the perfect backdrop to say ‘I do’. There are other gorgeous rooms and a beautiful terrace for drinks. Bring on the bubbles!
This is an exclusive-use, stylish and elegant venue, ideal for an intimate party or larger celebration. Ben and Sandra went for large and cemented their fabulous relationship with a beautiful wedding in The Chapel in October with all their family and friends.
- Enchanted Woodland – http://www.enchantingwoodlandweddings.com
If you love nature and are looking for a woodland wedding, this is the venue for you. Located in Umberside, the ceremony space is set in an ancient oak woodland hidden amongst the tree canopy. It is very atmospheric. It’s quite a long walk deep into the woods, but so worthwhile once you are there. The acoustics alone are magical. No décor is required as it is all around you.
This is my ideal venue for a bohemian, rustic and dreamy woodland wedding – just like Alex and Josh’s. They had a handtying in the woods in August. What could be more romantic? I also can’t wait for Natalie and Jon’s wedding next year in April when the bluebells are in bloom. It’s a natural, understated but delightful venue which takes your breath away.
- The Arnold House
This is a beautiful Grade II listed building situated in the heart of Rugby, and it has recently undergone a fabulous refurbishment. There are two stunning ceremony rooms, which are elegant and atmospheric. The larger one has beautiful lighting – natural light in the afternoon and new chandeliers which are stunning as a backdrop for a sophisticated and classy evening celebration.
It’s a great venue for a 1940s or 50s themed wedding. It has an ideal town centre location with loads of room for all your family and friends to celebrate. The key plus to this venue is the very friendly in-house team. They can help to organise your day with everything from venue décor to flowers and the cake.
I know I said my Top 5 venues, but I can’t sign off without adding one last extra exclusive venue: your own home. You don’t need a license for your Celebrant ceremony. I have conducted two fabulous ceremonies in family homes. After all, home is where the heart is. They were relaxed, informal, intimate ceremonies, and can be even better if you have a lovely garden. What a wonderful way to celebrate, especially with children.
This list is not exhaustive. There are so many more amazing venues in the area. If you are looking for your ideal venue and wondering where to start, please do get in touch.