It's party time
Country Life UK|January 12, 2022
From the smartest country estates to the capital’s most glamorous hotels, securing the dream wedding venue should be your first priority

Hedsor House, Taplow, Buckinghamshire

This historic estate is a mere 45-minute drive from London, making it a popular choice. Managed by the Shephard family, the Georgian mansion has been tastefully restored into a luxurious party venue available for exclusive hire. The house is set in 100 acres of private parkland, with a sweeping rhododendron-lined driveway of more than half a mile. Couples can get married in the 12th-century church, some 300 yards from the main building, with a reception marquee on the lawn for up to 1,500 guests.

All bedrooms are full of character and charm, with restored period features, and the crown jewel is the vast bridal suite. One of the biggest in Europe, it boasts a decadent dressing area, a handmade four-poster bed and a balcony overlooking the landscaped gardens (01628 819050; www.hedsor.com)

Lucknam Park, Colerne, Wiltshire

The mile-long, tree-lined driveway leading to this heritage hotel is certain to impress your guests. The building is set in 500 acres of Cotswolds countryside and you can take over the entire venue, with 43 bedrooms and suites. Exchange vows in the library or elegant music room, followed by drinks in the 1830s walled garden.

For your wedding breakfast, the Restaurant Hywel Jones offers a fine-dining experience perfectly paired with wines. The ESPA spa is the place for pre-wedding pampering and there are multiple country pursuits on offer, including horse riding. Dogs are welcome, so even four-legged friends can be part of your special day (01225 742777; www.lucknampark.co.uk)

Deer Park, Buckerell, Devon

Deer Park is an exquisite retreat where you can plan days of fun and the Georgian party pad is available for exclusive hire: think carved fireplaces, designer wallpapers, antique furniture, gallery walls of artwork and herb pots scenting the air. The light-flooded orangery is a striking setting for a ceremony, with views onto the Italian gardens. Outside are wildflower meadows, orchards, woodland and secret gardens. Alfresco feasts are encouraged and the chefs predominantly serve British food with a Mediterranean twist, using ingredients from the estate. Accommodation includes a playhouse, a shed and a secluded treehouse for the newly-weds, with log burner, roll-top bath and wrap-around balcony. Every wedding here is bespoke and, according to the team, the more extraordinary the request, the better (01404 41266; www.deerpark.co.uk)

Sibton Park, Wilderness Reserve, Suffolk

Wilderness is known best for staycations and is the ultimate stage for a wedding weekender. The vast country estate has 42 bedrooms located in a Georgian mansion, Suffolk pink farmhouses, the coach house and barn, as well as cosy cottages and the walled-garden property. Only hosting a handful of weddings each year, the team will deliver on any request, such as a woodland fire feast, a relaxed poolside barbecue or a bonfire experience complete with mulled wine and toasted marshmallows.

Your ceremony can be held at Sibton Park, in the ornate drawing room, or at the nearby village church, followed by a reception in the orangery for up to 240 guests. Explore the estate in style by Pashley bicycle or hop into one of the Land Rovers, there to transport you around the 8,000 acres. You can also enjoy country pursuits such as clay-pigeon shooting, fishing and archery (01986 802113; www. wildernessreserve.com)

St Audries Park, West Quantoxhead, Somerset

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM COUNTRY LIFE UKView All

‘Believe nothing to be impossible'

‘No harder than dancing the Charleston’, according to Lady Heath, flying planes was all the rage for the women of the 1930s, explains Charles Harris

6 mins read
Country Life UK
May 18, 2022

With a spring in its step

Kathryn Bradley-Hole selects some of the many highlights of the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, which at long last returns to its traditional May slot

5 mins read
Country Life UK
May 18, 2022

To ring a nightingale

On a cold spring morning, Patrick Galbraith held a nightingale in the palm of his hand. Yet, by the time he has grandchildren, this amazing little bird may have sung its last

7 mins read
Country Life UK
May 18, 2022

Three of a kind

The beautiful North Wessex Downs are the leafy backdrop to three imposing country houses for sale

5 mins read
Country Life UK
May 18, 2022

Lek at me

Managed moorland is the place to observe an extraordinary mating ritual

3 mins read
Country Life UK
May 18, 2022

Oriental splendour

Glamorous and easy to grow, Japanese tree peonies are the mainstay of Primrose Hall Nursery in Bedfordshire, says Val Bourne

5 mins read
Country Life UK
May 18, 2022

The lions of Trafalgar Square

Britain's greatest masterpieces

4 mins read
Country Life UK
May 18, 2022

Rivers of waste

Simon Cooper traces the history of sewage discharges in British waters and suggests possible solutions

5 mins read
Country Life UK
May 18, 2022

Loopy about lupins

Steven Desmond uncovers the touching story behind the exotic, multi-coloured field of lupins at Terwick in West Sussex

5 mins read
Country Life UK
May 18, 2022

ENGLISH HOMES OLD & NEW

English Home part V Each month of this 125th anniversary year, COUNTRY LIFE illustrates a period in the development of the English great house. In the fifth of this 12-part series, John Goodall looks at developments through an age of revolution

8 mins read
Country Life UK
May 18, 2022