Expert advice about venues

Here is a selection of Q&As from Your Devon and Cornwall Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to editor@yourdevoncornwall.wedding

 

Home from home

Home from home

Q. We're planning a wedding in Devon and want to book a venue where we can invite our loved ones to spend the entire weekend with us and have a house party-style celebration. Where do you suggest?

A. Hannah Evans says: Meet the expert: Hannah Evans is the joint owner of Hallsannery with her husband Charles. It was closed in 2012 for refurbishment where it was restored to its former glory as a late Georgian, early Victorian property and reopened in 2013 as a wedding venue and holiday destination.

Hannah says: Why not consider hiring a large house where your loved ones can gather for a weekend (or even a week) and where there aren't the restrictions that many wedding venues impose? That way, you can create a home away from home atmosphere and host an informal, intimate celebration. Hallsannery House located just outside of Bideford and approximately five miles from the sandy shores of the North Devon coast offers an exclusive, flexible wedding venue. With 11 en suite bedrooms and a sumptuous Bridal Suite home to a four-poster bed and roll-top bath, the property offers plenty of spaces for wedding celebrations including three reception rooms (one with a fire), a dining room featuring a glistening chandelier that's ideal for the wedding breakfast, a farmhouse kitchen large enough for a group brunch or lunch, an indoor and outdoor games room, and even a tennis court.

With a choice of indoor and outdoor ceremony locations and a selection of gorgeous spots for big-day photographs, this Grade II listed manor house provides an elegant backdrop for a house partystyle wedding. It can be themed for weddings in all seasons - think twinkling candles and a roaring fire in winter, and flower-filled gardens and croquet on the lawn in summer. Keeping everything under one roof is simple and budget friendly because most things are included and there's no corkage fee.

Hannah Evans
www.hallsannery.co.uk

 

The great outdoors

The great outdoors

Q. We want to find a place in Devon where we can plan a relaxed, festivalstyle blessing outdoors and create the day we want without the restrictions of a more formal wedding venue. Where do you suggest?

A. Ian & Nicky says: Meet the experts: Ian and Nicky Richards are the owners of Little Oak Meadow located in Colyton, East Devon. The couple decided to follow their dream and open it to the public as a wedding venue after being inspired by their own daughter's wedding. It's a lovingly maintained site with plenty of options for celebrations.

Ian and Nicky say: Little Oak Meadow is situated in a private, secluded location with plenty of possibilities for an outdoor celebration. We offer couples and their guests overnight glamping accommodation in tipis, yurts or bell tents. This means that a wedding can be a weekend affair rather than lasting just one day. If you're feeling adventurous, you're more than welcome to bring your own tent, campervan, caravan or motorhome for a rural wedding retreat. We are very relaxed, so whatever your requirements we will listen and help create your dream day. Unlike other wedding venues in Devon, we don't offer a standard wedding package. Instead, we build them specifically tailored according to your needs and requirements, resulting in a beautiful wedding in the Devonshire countryside that you and your guests will never forget.

Ian & Nicky
www.littleoakmeadow.co.uk

 

Food, glorious food

Food, glorious food

Q. We're looking to marry in Cornwall and want a flexible venue where we can help to create the menu. Where do you recommend?

A. Rosemarne Manor says: Meet the expert: Cyril Eustice is the joint owner of Rosewarne Manor, a function venue and restaurant located in Hayle, Cornwall.

Cyril says: Choosing a family-owned wedding venue is key to getting a personal service and it's also important to consider choosing a restaurant over a hotel to really get a say in your menu. We don't offer set packages, instead every couple creates their own one resulting in them paying only for what they need. All weddings held here have the opportunity to create a bespoke menu with up to four different options in each course, plus a child's meal. We are also happy to include your favourite dish.

Our most popular dessert option is the platter of cocktail desserts where each guest can sample five mini ones.

Buffets are also an informal option for the main meal or evening reception, with everything being baked on our premises.

We can guarantee exclusivity and also add in other personal touches like a welcome drink for each guest that they can choose from the bar.

Rosemarne Manor
www.rosewarnemanor.co.uk

 

Island life

Island life

Q. We're considering marrying in the Isles of Scilly. Can you help us with some knowledge of venues in the area and what they have to offer?

A. Lesley Thomas says: Lesley says: We have several stunning locations for you to choose from, from our small register office on St Mary's, Isles of Scilly for a simple ceremony with just your witnesses, to one of our licensed venues for a larger occasion. Many couples make the trip to the islands to tie the knot and experience a Scillonian wedding.

On St Mary's, there's the Star Castle Hotel offering a romantic medieval setting, and Juliet's Garden Restaurant with stunning panoramic vistas across the harbour.

If you prefer a remote island setting, Karma St Martin's, could be for you. The luxury hotel can offer celebrations overlooking the silky white sands of the beach in front of their gardens, with views stretching across to the other islands.

It's always an option to have a simple civil ceremony in the register office, followed by an affirmation of vows, exchanging rings on your favourite beach, in a picturesque garden, or even onboard a boat, the possibilities are endless. We can offer the Porthcressa Beachside Room that opens on to the beach for superb photo opportunities, or just a quick paddle!

Lesley Thomas
scilly.gov.uk

 

Festival fever

Festival fever

Q. We're getting married in Cornwall next summer and want to create a festival feel at our wedding for our large number of guests. Can you recommend a venue with some ideas on how to go about styling it?

A. Hannah Marsh says: Why not consider hiring a purpose-built festival site for your wedding and creating the real thing for your guests? The Wyldes is home to the multi-award-winning Leopallooza Festival and allows couples the chance to say 'I do' on the main stage where famous acts Kelis, Paloma Faith and Bastille, to name but a few, have played. This site has been throwing Cornwall's greatest house party in a field for over a decade and we want to make sure that your wedding is every bit as fun.

Brides or grooms-to-be can make their entrance down the natural tree-lined aisle, and the site is spread over three fields, so there's plenty of space for the wedding celebration to follow. Think camping, feasting and late-night partying and you get the idea.

The site can be styled to suit any theme, whether that's a retro barefoot Woodstock vibe with macramé drapes, boho flower crowns and lace, or something more edgy and urban.

Hannah Marsh
www.weddingsinthewyldes.com

 

The great outdoors

The great outdoors

Q. We're looking to get married in the Cornish countryside and want a relaxed setting that provides something a bit different for our guests, what can you suggest?

A. Engin and Liz Mumcuoglu says: Why not consider a purpose-built venue that offers you the opportunity to tie the knot outside incorporating something a little bit different in its grounds? Trevibban Mill is a contemporary wedding venue located just three miles from the famous harbour town of Padstow. Nestled in the valley of the Issey Brook, the south-facing event space and balcony enjoy extensive vistas of the wildflower meadows, vineyards and orchards below. There's a bird hide situated on a small island in the lake that's also licensed for civil ceremonies. Big-day catering is all taken care of by Appleton's Bar & Restaurant for a maximum of 120 guests and the venue offers a wide choice of wines and ciders all made in the on-site winery. There's a peaceful two-bedroom Eco Lodge available for hire in the grounds, surrounded by apple trees, that's a short walk from the lake. Furnished in a comfortable, contemporary style complete with a woodburner, it's a romantic wedding night bolthole.

Engin and Liz Mumcuoglu
www.trevibbanmill.com

 

Venue with a difference

Venue with a difference

Q. We'd like a creative, quirky venue for our Plymouth-based wedding that we can style how we wish. We don't want to be confined to the limitations of a hotel. Can you help?

A. Corinne Ponton says: Ocean Studios is an unusual venue offering a stylish backdrop for a wedding. The historic yard is an unconventional space with exposed brick walls, wooden floorboards and open window skylights offering a relaxed, industrial feel. There are three licensed spaces each holding up to 120 guests, with every space being a blank canvas and having the ability to be transformed depending on each couple's vision. It also offers great opportunities for photographs.

The venue offers a range of packages to suit different requirements, including the wedding ceremony, reception or both.

Corinne Ponton
www.oceanstudios.org.uk

 

Animalistic

Animalistic

Q. We want to marry in a quirky venue that will surprise our guests and that's different to other weddings we've visited. Any ideas?

A. Abi Neal-Smith says: What could be a more magical backdrop for your wedding than the rolling hills of Dartmoor with a few extra guests? The venue hire at Dartmoor Zoo includes zoo admission to keep your loved ones entertained throughout the day with the exciting variety of animal residents to see.

Why not seize the opportunity and book an animal experience for after the ceremony for a wedding photo like no other? There are a choice of exclusive couple experiences, as well as activities that your entire wedding party can enjoy including meeting with the zoo team and hearing about their work in conservation and research. They will also cater to your specific needs, with flexible packages including a buffet, barbecues and the more traditional sit down, three-course wedding breakfast. There's a variety of dessert options on offer and the team love coming up with bespoke ideas based on a couple's theme.

Whilst being a quirky venue, it offers beautiful, traditional touches with the Ceremony Room featuring the original fireplace and wood flooring. There's areas ideal for large groups attending a summer or winter celebration including a marquee in the heart of the zoo surrounded by lush green vegetation and the animal enclosures.

Abi Neal-Smith
www.dartmoorzoo.org.uk

When it's time for you look for local businesses to help you with your wedding, take a look at our advertisements below. Most will have links to their own websites. These advertisements are updated regularly so please revisit often and mention Your Devon and Cornwall Wedding when making any enquiries.

Spillers Chauffeur Hire Co
Pengersick Castle
Sarah Chapman - Independent Celebrant
The Corn Barn