A wedding open day can be an excellent starting point to find out more about your wedding day in a calm and relaxed setting.
They also offer a great opportunity to ask the sales and operations team any questions you may have about a venue, from exclusive use to accommodation and even where to take the best wedding photos, here are some essential questions to ask at a venue open day.
1. Will we have exclusive use? What times do we have the venue?
It’s important to know if the hiring fee allows you free rein across the venue as it ensures that only you and your nearest and dearest will be part of your big day as well as for your all-important invitees!
At The Walled Garden you will have exclusive use of the venue from 9am on your wedding day. This also includes use of the Dressing Room upstairs. You will have exclusive use of the entire venue and garden until carriages at midnight.
2. Are there any restrictions on decorating the venue?
Have grand plans for your wedding day? It’s always worth asking at a wedding open day about your ideas for decorating a venue as they will have suggestions over what you can and cannot do.
3. What are the seated and standing capacities for each room?
Venue capacity should be one of the first questions to ask a potential wedding venue. It’s important to be clued up on the numbers to know just how many guests to invite to your wedding ceremony, reception or party. At The Walled Garden, we can accommodate 100 seated or 130 standing.
4. Are you licensed for civil ceremonies?
Holding your wedding ceremony in the same place as your reception will ensure everything runs smoothly and also removes any additional travel requirements that may be needed to transport your guests from the ceremony to the reception. The Walled Garden is licensed for civil ceremonies in our two reception rooms and the garden itself.
5. Where can I get ready?
Most wedding venues should have a place for at least one person from the wedding party to get ready. It is also important to note when you have access to the venue from on the day. At The Walled Garden your venue hire includes the Dressing Room upstairs from 9am, a light and airy space to get ready that offers a great vantage point for you to watch your guests arrive!
6. Is there a wet weather option?
Although you may be dreaming of an outdoor wedding on a summer’s day, the great British weather may have other plans, so it’s important to plan a wet weather option. The Courtyard Room with its charming bare stonework is a popular choice for a ceremony space. Some of our couples also opt for a stretch tent outside to ensure they can enjoy an outdoor drinks reception regardless of the weather.
7. Is there guest accommodation available nearby?
If your guests are coming from further afield, the likelihood is that they’ll need to stay the night. Often a reliable taxi service to get them safely home is also needed.
Although there is no accommodation at the venue, there is plenty of accommodation nearby, including the Cowdray Lodge, Benbow Holiday Cottages and our Cowdray Collection Cottages. We even have romantic Treehouses located a stone’s throw away from the venue. Additionally we can also help with hotel recommendations if needed!
8. Who are your recommended suppliers?
Generally, most wedding venues have a select list of suppliers for your wedding day including caterers and tent suppliers, who know the venue. Here at The Walled Garden, we are proud to work with a selection of carefully chosen catering partners in addition to our in-house catering team, The Yellow Kitchen. The Yellow Kitchen take their inspiration from the wider Estate and its produce to create their menus.
9. Do we need to take out wedding insurance?
Although this may not be the most exciting question, it is an important one. We strongly recommend taking out wedding insurance. Although we’re hopeful you wouldn’t need to use it, we appreciate weddings aren’t cheap, so it’s definitely better to be safe than sorry!
10. What are the next steps and when can I pencil in a date?
Have a date in mind? You can pencil in a date with Hannah at our next open day subject to availability. We’re happy to hold for a couple of weeks without a deposit to give you time to check availability with the registrars and any other key suppliers. When you are ready to go ahead we will send out your agreement for you to review and sign, along with an invoice for your £500 deposit to secure the date – simple!