14th Jan 2020
Many people are surprised to learn that when they contact Birdsall House, they’ll often get a response from Lady Cara Willoughby herself. Birdsall House has been in the Willoughby family for over 300 years and opened as a wedding venue in 2018. Cara is very involved with the wedding planning that goes on at Birdsall, not just because it’s her home too (the family live in a separate part of the house) but because she has a myriad of experience from working in design and interiors to event planning itself. She works alongside our Events Co-Ordinator Becky Spink. Becky has previously run her own catering and events company and now works with couples planning their big day by also conducting show-arounds, working with our preferred suppliers and answering your questions. Here’s a round up of what both Cara and Becky get asked on a regular basis but, of course, if you have any more questions (which we are sure you will, it’s YOUR day after all) please do contact us.
If we book our wedding at Birdsall House, what time can we arrive from and when do we need to leave?
We pride ourselves on being an exclusive, bespoke wedding venue so we don’t prescribe set arrival or departure times. Most couples like to arrange arrival times the day before the wedding, with many deciding that one partner and their family or friends will stay in our luxury bedrooms the night before. Likewise, we agree a departure time with you well in advance of the wedding and work around you. We only book one wedding per weekend so there is no “conveyer belt” atmosphere – the weekend is all about you.
What are our options in regards to where we say our vows?
We’re glad you asked! At Birdsall, there are six options for your ceremony. St Mary’s Church, Birdsall is situated within our grounds and is a two-minute stroll away or a beautiful ten minute stroll up our avenue of 300 year old Lime trees. The Church holds up to 250 people and Reverend Stephen Walker is always happy to talk to couples wishing to marry here. However, if that’s not right for you, choose from our ballroom, oval room ( a state room next to our ballroom) or our dining room. While you need a roof to legally marry here in the UK – we can provide two options which meet the legal requirements but still give the feel of an outdoor wedding: The Temple which overlooks our lake and the Front Porch with our Twelfth century Monastery Ruins beside it.
Because you’re not a hotel or a purposefully built venue, how do things like food and drink work?
We think this is one of the highlights of getting married here! We have a range of preferred suppliers who we use for both a bar service and catering. We have a commercial kitchen within the house, fully equipped with everything that a top-chef needs to prepare high-quality, tailored menus. Our bar service suppliers can set a bar(s) in a range of locations throughout the house and grounds. The added benefit of this is that you can choose the look of the bar based on your own taste as well as craft your own drinks menu. Yorkshire Bartender, for example, can provide round bars, long bars and even a bar within a converted Land Rover.
We know there’s lots of options nearby for accommodation but for the two of us, we want something really special. What would you recommend?
You’re right, there are a range of hotels, bed and breakfasts and cottages nearby. We are also soon to be partnering with the recently renovated Langton Hall which provides luxury bedrooms and holiday cottages. However, within Birdsall House itself we have six luxury bedrooms. They were renovated to a high-standard in 2017 and have featured in national press including The Sunday Times. Our Bridal Suite boasts incredible views, a separate dressing room and an en-suite with walk-in shower and separate double bath. For many people, this show-stopping bedroom seals the deal when they visit!
This sounds great, let’s get down to logistics. Where does everyone park?
You may have seen pictures of our long, picturesque drive which leads to the main entrance of the House. If you imagine where a photographer stands to take this picture, behind the photographer is a large field which we have ensured is suitable for parking. We have tasteful signage which we display on the roads surrounding the grounds so that people are able to find your wedding easily and know where to park.
Posted in Weddings