An Essex Wedding - March/April 2024 (Issue 115)

OUTDOORS Venues with glorious gardens a honeymoon in the Maldives HERE COME THE GIRLS Dressing the bridal party MAR/APR 2024 £3.55 ESSEXWEDDING WIN! One fine day Real weddings to inspire The great

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REGULARS 6 EDITOR’S LETTER What to look out for in this issue 9 NEARLYWED NEWS Catch up on news from around Essex 13 FREEBIES & OFFERS Great giveaways and discounts up for grabs 85 HOT TOPIC Local experts offer stellar advice 97 COMPETITION Win a honeymoon in the Maldives worth £3,000 CONTENTS MARCH/APRIL 2024 VENUES 21 LOCAL VENUES Venues in Romford, Brentwood, Billericay and around 25 GLORIOUS GARDENS Venues with the option to take it outside! On the cover This beautiful shot was taken by photographer Liam Gillan at a beautiful autumn-inspired styled shoot at St Osyth Priory. 55 25 FEATURES 49 AN ENCHANTED WEDDING Shot on a crisp autumn day, a team of local suppliers worked together to create this stunning styled shoot at the majestic St Osyth Priory 55 PLANNED TO PERFECTION Here at An Essex Wedding, we understand how overwhelming organising your nuptials can be. We’ve spoken to our local industry experts to offer their tips and advice! 71 SQUAD GOALS The latest seasonal trends for the wedding party 3

REAL WEDDINGS 31 YOU ROCK MY WORLD Megan and Ollie’s quirky wedding at The Canary Shed was a festival of colour, dance and good vibes 37 SO IN LOVE Paige and Joel Barton opted for a classic, white wedding at Milsoms Kesgrave Hall 43 FALLING FOR YOU Autumnal vibes set the scene for Hollie and Alex’s stunning wedding at Layer Marney Tower HONEYMOONS 88 HONEYMOON NEWS Our travel editor reveals the newest openings and honeymoon essentials 90 THE ITALIAN DREAM Live la dolce vita at Villa La Massa in the heart of the breathtaking Tuscan countryside 92 PICTURESQUE PARGA Jet to Parga Beach Resort in this popular coastal town located on the north-western coast of Greece 95 A ROOM WITH A VIEW Get away from it all at Dunston Hall Hotel, Spa and Golf Resort GROOMS 77 GROOMS’ NEWS The latest best buys and product launches 78 FEELING PEACHY We’ve rounded up some of the latest on-trend products for the groom-to-be inspired by Pantone’s colour of the year, Peach Fuzz FASHION & BEAUTY 61 FASHION FOCUS The latest bridal fashion news, buys and launches 63 IN LOVE WITH LACE This delicate fabric is always in fashion 68 THE ULTIMATE EDIT Add instant glam to your big-day look with these latest jewellery launches 81 FASHION AND BEAUTY Q&A Our local professionals solve your problems 82 BEAUTY BUZZ Get the look with the latest must-haves 43 49 92 78 53 4 celebrate In the Chelmsford countryside Cosy, roman�c, in�mate award winning restaurant & licensed wedding venue Ceremonies & fine dining celebra�ons for up to 30 people

Spring has sprung! Venues with glorious gardens are welcoming shoots of new colour and we’re loving the new window displays of bridal boutiques as everything brightens up for the warmer months ahead. If you got engaged this Valentine’s Day, congratulations, we’d love to hear from you. Plus 2024 was a special February - if you proposed on the 29th, we can’t wait to hear your leap year stories. With this in mind we have a fabulous three-page special designed to help you on your wedding journey as local industry experts give their top tips and answer reader questions. This edition is also packed full of fashion inspo, with five-pages dedicated to lace – the delicate fabric that’s always en-vogue. There’s also accessories galore and an entire feature to help you dress your bride squad! To submit your own nuptials to grace the pages of An Essex Wedding, get in touch via our website: Happy planning! Put a pr in your s s tep i ! ng Rachel Westall, Editor Rachel x Aww, pup Koba with pawrents Paige and Joel! Honeymoon goals at Parga Beach Resort, Greece The lace paneling on this dress is everything. ISSN 1745-6541 ADVERTISING Account Manager Jessie Wilson | 01376 538 478 An Essex Wedding is solely owned, published and designed by Ellis Media and Events Ltd. Whilst every effort was made to ensure the information in this magazine was correct at the time of going to press, the publishers cannot accept legal responsibility for any errors or omissions, nor can they accept responsibility for advert content, or of the standing of advertisers or by the editorial contributions. The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher. An Essex Wedding is published six times a year. @CountyWeddingMagazines @CountyWeddings @countyweddingmagazines Visit us online at and DESIGN 01376 535 616 ACCOUNTS 01376 535 616 MANAGING DIRECTOR Sarah Ellis | 01376 535 602 EDITORIAL Editor Rachel Westall | 01376 535 611

Arriving in style at Layer Marney Tower Jo Malone London’s new fragrance, Red Hibiscus Cologne Intense Atelier VM’s lip necklace a honeymoon in the Maldives worth £3,000 WIN Megan and Ollie’s wedding at The Canary Shed was so much fun! EDITOR’S LETTER 7

KMS Hire provides venue dressing and bespoke styling as well as individual prop hire. With a large range including stunning blossom trees and canopy arches, centrepieces, flower walls, led dance floors, light up letters and much more there is no dream KMS can’t create. WWW.KMSHIRE.COM 01621 927007 | 3 King Georges Place, Maldon High Street, Essex, CM9 5BZ Welcome to Anna Love Wedding Dress and Prom, in the Heart of Maldon. At Anna Love, we understand the importance of finding the perfect dress for your special day. Our dedicated team is here to provide you with a personalized and friendly experience, ensuring that you feel confident and beautiful. Explore our stunning collection of wedding dresses and prom gowns to find the one that makes you feel truly special. nicole.jane.aesthetics 07748 381541 Contact me for a free consultation! Enhance Your Natural Beauty For Your Wedding Day Luxurious Wedding Flowers Making Your Day Truly Special Website: Tel: 07932 733945 / 01245 361939 Facebook/Instagram: @cherubsflorists Email:

BRAXTED PARK ESTATE OPEN DAY IN MAY Braxted Park Estate offers a unique blend of serenity and sophistication that come together in one magnificent venue. Set amongst the picturesque Essex countryside, Braxted Park Estate is a carefully curated space that offers the perfect setting where forever memories are created and everything you could wish for is here in this one breathtaking location. And on 12th May, 2024 you’ll be able to experience this exquisite location for yourselves. Between 11am and 3pm, the team will be opening the gates of the 500acre estate and inviting you to experience the magic of Braxted Park Estate. Braxted Park Estate’s friendly and knowledgeable team will be on hand to guide you around the Estate and will be serving delicious refreshments throughout the day. They have also invited some of their most trusted suppliers to join the event, so you’ll have the opportunity to meet them and discuss your ideas and questions with them, too. Spaces are limited, so get in touch with the Braxted Park Estate team today on +44 (0)1621 770 855 to book your place. NEWS Nearlywed All the latest from the region RECHARGE AND RESET AT DOWN HALL Down Hall Hotel, Spa & Estate has unveiled new wellness retreats, including the Breathwork Weekend and Wellness Sound Bath Weekend for 2024. Set against 110-acres of stunning greenery and woodlands, the hotel makes an idyllic setting to switch off and fully immerse yourself in the hotel’s tranquil workshops as you escape the daily grinds of everyday life. Wellness retreats will run throughout the year. The Breathwork Weekend Retreat includes breathwork, sound bathing, dinner and overnight stay. Begin with a relaxing spa treatment in Eden Spa, followed by a powerful breathwork and meditation class led by Down Hall’s Wellness and Holistic expert Camilla Sheeley; where you will be guided through a range of breathing techniques as you enter through altered states of consciousness, communicating with the nervous system, one breath at a time. A three-course dinner will follow, curated by Executive Chef Robert Pearce in the hotel’s 2 AA Rosette restaurant the Garden Room, before you settle down for a harmony gong and sound bath session. After a restful night’s sleep in one of the luxurious bedrooms, watch the sunrise on the hotel’s striking lawn with an outdoor yoga and meditation class followed by breakfast and a guided woodlands walk, before departing feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. For more details and to hear about the Wellness Sound Bath Weekend Retreat and more visit the website: HOUCHINS - REBRANDED! Houchins has recently undergone a rebranding, complete with redesigned logo, allowing the house to be the focal point. Over the past 10 years, Houchins has gone from being the ‘new kid on the block’ to one of the market leading mid/upmarket wedding venues in the area. Now established, the venue was ready for an update to show it’s more market leading and confident than ever! The venue is original in style for a barn – it’s modern, without beams - and is a handsome blank canvas on which any couple can add as much or as little as they like and have their very own dream wedding. The key theme for Houchins’ rebrand is: Heritage made Modern. The old bull logo how now been replaced by a clean black and white image of the Houchins House. The House stands proudly above the garden and venue as a glorious backdrop for photos at the very least and as a home from home for those who choose to stay in it. One couple described the house in their review as: “That house is like a giant hug; it wraps everyone up and nestles them in, in complete comfort.” To learn more about the venue, please visit: the website: 9 NEWS

NEW LUXURY TRAVEL AGENT OPENS Vaycay Luxury Travel, has now opened its doors in Newland Street, Witham. The company promises that from the moment that VayCay Luxury Travel starts to plan your holiday, until you return, you’ll receive the full attention and the excellent service that you deserve. Vaycay Luxury Travel has been set up by husbandand-wife team Colin Pegler, who is the Chairman of the Caribbean Tourism Organisation UK & Europe and Paula Whitehead, formerly Head of Long Haul Purchasing for British Airways Holiday. Both are local Essex residents and business owners with extensive experience in the international travel market. Christine Taylor-Higgs, Travel Consultant at Vaycay Luxury Travel, said: “I’ve spent many years working as a leading specialist tour operator focusing on weddings and honeymoons, and worked for two Caribbean tourist boards. Along with my highly experienced colleague Jo, we are so excited to help make our customers’ travel dreams come true”. So, if you’re thinking of planning your honeymoon, do pop into the branch. The company says its extensive database of getaways could see travel fans sailing away on a luxurious cruise, taking an adventure trip down under, uncovering Carribean gems for a oncein-a-lifetime trip, and wherever else may be on your bucket list. For further information, visit: 119 Newland Street, Witham; or call 01245 207649 or simply send an email to: INTIMATE WEDDINGS FOR TWO Hedingham Castle’s new Elopement Package is proving very popular. The venue is now offering intimate weddings for two, for couples seeking a romantic and memorable way to tie the knot. Hedingham Castle is a perfect setting for couples looking to celebrate the beginning of their marriage in a private and intimate setting. With stunning architecture and picturesque views, this venue exudes a timeless charm and sophistication that will make your wedding day unforgettable. With the entire 900-year-old Castle and spectacular grounds to yourselves, say your vows under the impressive double height Norman archway of the Banqueting Hall, followed by photos on the Minstrels Gallery and in the gardens with the peaceful backdrop of the lake. After a champagne reception, take your seats for an exquisite five-course tasting menu served in the Banqueting Hall, where nobility would have dined hundreds of years ago. After dining, retire to your accommodation for the evening, the grand Royal Chamber situated on the top floor of the Castle. Featuring a palatial four poster bed and a bathtub big enough for two, this romantic sanctuary is the only modern bedroom inside a Norman Keep in the country. The package is available Monday to Thursday only and you can tweak your package to include up to a maximum of four additional guests. All the details are available online at: 10

Houchins is an intimate and romantic wedding venue with the choice of accommodation. Exclusively yours for the day, Houchins is set in beautiful grounds just outside Coggeshall, easily accessible to Essex, Hertfordshire and London. Call our award-winning team to arrange a viewing or chat through your plans on how we can make your perfect wedding day. Houchins Wedding Venue | Coggeshall | Essex | CO6 1RT 01376 561448 Photos courtesy of Beth Beresford Photography, Shianne Mercer, Jessica Moore, Kris Lissimore, Farlie Photography, Matt Wing, Big Fish Photography & Daniel Acklerley Photography

Great giveaways and discounts up for grabs A GUIDING HAND Celebrated is the new hardcover coffee table book by Essex based photographer Ross Willsher. It’s a collection of heartfelt prose and poetry to uplift, inspire, and empower you, as you embark on your wedding planning journey. Celebrated is a wedding planning book with a difference. It centres on making sure couples feel confident and comfortable in their own skin as they journey towards marriage. An Essex Wedding magazine has teamed up with Ross and has three copies to give away! To be in with a chance of winning, visit the website: The deadline to enter is, 30th April 2024. LILY CHARMED IS GIVING READERS THE CHANCE TO WIN £150 TO SPEND ONLINE Crafted from recycled sterling silver and gold-plated recycled sterling silver, Lily Charmed ( brings you a seamless canvas for effortless jewellery curation, ensuring that each piece offers a lifetime investment for authentic self-expression. Collect and curate your very own jewellery box of keepsakes with Lily Charmed’s unique range of consciously crafted charms. Bringing joy through jewellery, each piece is designed to showcase your memories and magical life journey with a modern edge. From engraved talismans, romantic hearts and keys, pretty florals, colourful motifs cast in resin, and whimsical bees and biscuits, to lustrous pearls, chic lockets and personalised birthstones adorning charm bracelets, charm collectors, chains and hoops, Lily Charmed offers a pick ‘n’ mix of playful designs. Layer, stack, mix and match, play with chain and bracelet styles, add charms, add colour − the choice is endless! Infinity symbols represent ever-lasting love, whilst alphabet charms and custom engraving make the perfect personalised touch for weddings. Elsewhere its hug rings, friendship charm bracelets and retro Mixtape, Cowboy Boot and Puzzle Pieces make effortlessly thoughtful bridesmaids gifts. Enter online an Terms and conditions apply. Freebies& OFFERS FREEBIES & OFFERS 13

ALL EVENTS 11AM - 3PM unless otherwise stated At County Wedding Events each show is professionally and meticulously run to ensure a variety of suppliers are on hand to help you plan your big day and are hosted by some of the loveliest premier venues in your area. All our shows offer you free entry and parking, a goody bag each containing gifts, and useful local information to plan your wedding. You will also have the opportunity to enter prize drawcompetitions and take advantage of exclusive offers and discounts on the day. WEDDING SHOWS SPRING 2024 As part of Ellis Media and Events Ltd, County Wedding Events (CWE) is ideally placed to offer you a wealth of experience organising events in the wedding industry. If you would like more information about either holding a wedding show at your venue or exhibiting at any of our shows, please contact us at, call 01376 514000 or visit WORK WITH US SUN, 12 MAY 2024 NUTFIELD PRIORY Nutfield Road, Nutfield, Redhill, RH1 4EL SURREY SUN, 24 MAR 2024 KIMBERLEY HALL Estate Office, Wymondham, NR18 0RT NORFOLK SUN, 14 APR 2024 RACKLEYS Marlow Road, Cadmore End, HP14 3PP BUCKINGHAMSHIRE SUFFOLK SUN, 21 APR 2024 RAVENWOOD HALL HOTEL Rougham, Bury St Edmunds, IP30 9JA /CountyWeddingEvents @CountyWedEvent @countyweddingevents FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL MEDIA

ESSEX SUN, 24 MAR 2024 VAULTY MANOR Osea Leisure, Goldhanger Road, Heybridge, CM9 4SA SUN, 14 APR 2024 THAT AMAZING PLACE Hubbards Hall Farm, Harlow, CM17 0NH SUN, 21 APR 2024 CHANNELS ESTATE Belsteads Farm Lane, Little Waltham, CM3 3PT SUN, 14 APR 2024 HOUCHINS Houchins Lane, Coggeshall, CO6 1RT SUN, 28 APR 2024 OLD ESSEX BARN Cranes Lane, Kelvedon, Colchester, CO5 9AX SUN, 12 MAY 2024 BRAXTED PARK Braxted Park Estate, Great Braxted, CM8 3EN 12pm-4pm Fashion Show SUN, 19 MAY 2024 ST OSYTH PRIORY West Field Lane, St Osyth, CO16 8GW KENT SUN, 21 APR 2024 LYMPNE CASTLE The Street, Lympne, CT21 4LQ 12pm-4pm 12pm-4pm SUN, 12 MAY 2024 FRASERS ColdHarbour Farm, Barhams Mill Road, Egerton, TN27 9DD

• Free entry • Goody bag for each couple • Up to 200 stands • Huge number of wedding specialists including venues • Demonstration areas • Competitions • Entertainment • Refreshments • And more... Pre-register and attend the show to have a chance to win a fabulous spa break worth £250 courtesy of Pre-register at Brooklands Drive, Weybridge, KT13 0SL SUNDAY 28TH APRIL 2024 | 11AM - 3:00PM MERCEDES-BENZ WORLD High Street, Berkshire, SL5 7JX SUNDAY 7TH APRIL 2024 | 11AM - 3.30PM ASCOT RACECOURSE

Pre-register for all of our events at ASCOT RACECOURSE, 7TH APRIL 2024 MERCEDES-BENZ WORLD, 28TH APRIL 2024 Sarah Here at County Wedding Magazines and Events HQ we’re looking forward to kickstarting our Spring 2024 wedding show season – perfect for all those couples that got engaged over the Summer period. From must-visit local fairs in some of the region’s best wedding venues to our larger Signature Wedding Shows, we can’t wait to welcome nearlyweds to our events and help plan their wedding day. Each event will boast a huge range of specialists who will be on hand to talk through your planning ideas and requirements; venues, bridal boutiques, photographers, florists, cake makers and more, there’s everything you could need to plan your wedding under one roof. On the day refreshments will be available to purchase from each of the venue’s on-site restaurants, bars and cafés. Couples will need to pre-register in advance for an allocated arrival time, although on the day visitors are always welcome, and attending our shows are free! For more information, visit County Wedding Events’ website. We look forward to seeing you at one of our events. Sarah Ellis, Sales and Events Director County Wedding Events. Pre-register and attend the how to have a chance to win a fabulous spa break worth £250 courtesy of A date for your diary... GREAT EXPECTATIONS


Weddings, Par�es, and Events Smooth Soul Singer email: 07881 637 551 Sustainable - Beautiful - Natural Dry hire venue in North Essex, available for weekend weddings between May and September BRICKWALL FARM - SIBLE HEDINGHAM - CO9 3RH

Marygreen Manor Hotel Your Dream Wedding starts with choosing the perfect venue. The Marygreen Manor is a Tudor Manor House dating from the 16th Century and was originally home to Henry. Roper, Gentleman Servant to Catherine of Aragon. This stunning venue, set in beautiful grounds, provides the perfect backdrop to your special day. Its abundance of Oak Beams, cosy Inglenook Fireplaces and quaint features are steeped in history and exude character and charm. Complete with Period Function Rooms, Secluded Garden, Delicious Food, Exceptional Service and a range of Stunning Guest Accommodation your search for the perfect venue ends here. Contact us now to arrange your private viewing: 01277 225252 | | Marygreen Manor hotel, London Road, Brentwood, Essex, CM14 4NR THE PERFECT VENUE FOR YOUR DREAM WEDDING! ALL INCLUSIVE WEDDING PACKAGES FROM ONLY £4,895.00 WE ARE SO CONFIDENT THAT WE ARE THE PERFECT WEDDING VENUE FOR YOUR SPECIAL DAY WE ARE PLEASED TO OFFER YOU THE CHANCE TO “TRY BEFORE YOU BUY!” Enjoy a delicious 3 course A la Carte Dinner for two followed by overnight accommodation, including full English Breakfast for only £189.00. If you book your wedding within two weeks of your visit we will credit the cost of your stay from your final Wedding Day account.

local Wed in and around Romford, Brentwood and Billericay MARYGREEN MANOR +44 (0)1277 225 252 | What to expect Marygreen Manor is a Tudor Manor House dating from the 16th century and was originally home to Henry Roper, Gentleman Servant to Catherine of Aragon. This stunning venue, set in beautiful grounds, provides a perfect backdrop to your special day. Beautifully presented, the garden is host to many delightful features including a rose arbour, ornamental pond and authentic thatched game larder. In the warmer months the garden is also the ideal location for your reception drinks and proves a popular area for guests to socialise during the evening festivities. Time to celebrate The tastefully decorated Samuel Pepys Room is fully licensed to hold your civil ceremony or partnership. With the high ceilings and large picture windows adding to its overall elegance and charm, the Samuel Pepys Room is a perfect setting in which to celebrate the beginning of your new life together, in the company of your family and close friends. For your reception, the Henry VIII Suite has a capacity of 85 for your wedding breakfast with the original Tudor oak beams contrasting beautifully with the crisp white table linen and stunning food presentation. Interconnecting with the Samuel Pepys Room, and opening out onto the tranquil gardens, this intimate and versatile suite also boasts a dancefloor and full bar facility - perfect for your evening festivities! With a capacity of 120, Tudors Restaurant is set in the Baronial Hall of Marygreen Manor. This award-winning restaurant offers international cuisine with beautiful à la carte and du jour menus, both complemented by an exceptional wine list. Tudors Restaurant can be hired for your bespoke wedding breakfast or, at an additional hire supplement, as part of one of the wedding packages. We love... Marygreen’s Tudor Suites and rooms are situated in the main house and benefit from many original, period features dating back to the 16th century. Steeped in history, these suites have either four poster or handcarved beds. These rooms come with bathrobes, slippers and an enhanced selection of toiletries for your comfort. GOING 21 LOCAL VENUES

MULBERRY HOUSE 01277 365 398 | What to expect This stunning Georgian country house offers a wealth of beautiful space to accommodate your dream wedding. On the first floor of the house is the exquisite, newly-renovated honeymoon suite which is available for you to enjoy on the night of your wedding. The beautiful grounds stretch to 22 acres and include the Mulberry tree from which the house gets its present name. There’s a Wellingtonia Fir planted to commemorate the Battle of Waterloo as well as many other mature trees including Lime, Ash, Elm, Yew and Chestnut. Within the grounds, there are many photo opportunities for couples, which includes a wishing well, Chippendale bridge and long grass meadows. The back paddock is home to the venue’s herd of alpacas, who all enjoy being involved on the day. Time to celebrate The Lakeview Gazebo provides a truly picturesque setting for a dreamy outdoor wedding, available between April to September on days when the weather is fine. If the British weather decides not to play along, Mulberry House offers complete flexibility and can arrange for your celebrations to be moved inside under the vaulted ceiling of the Cedar Suite. Both spaces seat 130 guests. For your reception, the air-conditioned Mulberry Suite boasts a stunning vaulted ceiling and statement chandelier. Seating up to 120 for your wedding breakfast, it’s perfect for a contemporary whilst traditional wedding breakfast and evening reception. Located on the ground floor of the main house, it also has its own private bar and cloakroom. The décor has been kept neutral, with wooden floors and exposed oak beams ready to be dressed as you wish! Hidden behind the beautiful Georgian house lies our stunning and newly refurbished all season’s marquee, seating up to 130 guests for a sitdown meal or 200 informally for an evening reception. It also has its own built-in bar and private decking area with lower outside terrace for use on warmer days or simply for some fresh air. The ivory draped, starlit ceiling with crystal chandeliers creates a magical feel for those special night-time occasions. The Marquee can be accessed via the main house, making it ideal for winter weddings, or from the woodland gardens during those sunny summer days. We love... On the first floor are the changing suites for the wedding parties for the morning of your wedding. Bridal changing facilities are available from 8am and a new ‘Lads Lounge’ is available for the guys to get suited up from midday. THE MAGIC MUSHROOM RESTAURANT 01268 289 963 | What to expect The Magic Mushroom Restaurant is set on Barleylands Road on the edge of Barleylands in Billericay. The front of the restaurant has pretty floral borders. The wedding function rooms have been designed with a contemporary and modern look with charming wooden beams providing a bright and airy space perfect for your special day. The décor is neutral to allow you to decorate with your own colour theme. The private dining room has its own entrance with a modern, mirrored bar. Time to celebrate There are two choices for your ceremony and reception: the private dining room, a modern, bright, and charming room; or the Back Restaurant. By hiring the Back Restaurant, you also have the private dining room which has its own entrance, bar and toilets. The two rooms are joined by bi-folding doors. The Back Restaurant is a beamed, bright and airy room with one side being glass windows to allow in lots of light. The Back Restaurant can accommodate between 36 to 100 guests for your reception. We love... This fine dining restaurant with its team of highly talented chefs can put together a bespoke, exquisite menu for your wedding breakfast and reception using only the best fresh ingredients. 22

IVY HILL HOTEL 01277 355 111 | What to expect A lovely, family-owned 31-bedroom boutique hotel, the Ivy Hill offers traditional hospitality that blends seamlessly into the contemporary design and furnishings. It has tasteful, luxurious surroundings with exceptional levels of comfort and personal service, bringing your stylish event to reality. The hotel is set within five acres of beautiful gardens, giving a relaxing atmosphere, whilst being in a superb location situated within easy access of all major routes. The patio and landscaped gardens have delightful features such as the wishing well, gazebo and ponds all forming stunning backdrops for reception drinks and photographs. Time to celebrate The venue is licensed to hold civil ceremonies within the Ingatestone and Ivy rooms, hosting intimate 10-guest celebrations or with all rooms combined up to 120 guests. These rooms overlook the patio and extend down onto the gardens, where the reception drinks and canapés are served. The Margaretting Suite is an elegant, sophisticated setting for the wedding breakfast, with its own entrance from the gardens. It benefits from plenty of windows giving ample natural daylight and boasts a refined neutral décor. There’s ample room for this suite to seat up to 160 guests. It has a spacious polished oak dancefloor and mirrored bar. The smaller of the two venues is the Ivy Suite, sited in the main body of the hotel and able to seat a maximum of 70 guests, with doors that extend out to the patio and gardens. This space also has complete flexibility in being able to subdivide and become a perfect location for a small, intimate occasion. We love... The Ivy Hill Hotel offers a free tasting to all couples that book one of the Heavenly Weddings packages. ORSETT HALL HOTEL, RESTAURANT & SPA 01375 891 402 | What to expect Orsett Hall’s Main Building is beautifully designed and rebuilt to replicate the original building which was built initially around 1750 and then rebuilt in the early 20th century, but unfortunately burned down in a fire in 2007. The hotel features individually designed and stylishly decorated guest bedrooms, superb dining in Garden Brasserie, elegant function rooms, a gorgeous Chapel and boutique spa. Time to celebrate Orsett Hall has an on-site chapel, licensed to conduct religious and nonreligious wedding ceremonies, as well as civil partnerships. Its stunning interior resembles something out of a fairytale and must be seen in person to be fully appreciated. Designed in soothing pastel tones and framed by elegant white beams covered in white flowers, the Chapel offers traditional seating and a large balcony where additional guests can be seated and music can be played. The gazebo offers couples the opportunity to get married outdoors within the gardens of Orsett Hall. Perfect for weddings in the summer months, it offers couples an intimate setting al fresco. All function rooms are also licensed for wedding ceremonies. The Gold Room with its exquisite chandeliers, period fireplace and large window areas, is a bright and welcoming setting for a wedding. It can cater for up to 80 guests seated, and up to 200 for an evening reception. Whitmore is decorated in warm rich tones and can comfortably accommodate up to 120 seated guests, or 250 for a standing reception. It includes a large bar and is the perfect venue for a special occasion. The Grahame Thomas Pavilion is the largest suite; it contains its own private bar and can seat up to 350 people for a banquet or wedding. The Pavilion is fully air-conditioned and even boasts its own koi carp pond and bridge, where outside seating is also provided. We love... The twinkling chandelier catches everyone’s eye as it stretches from the lower ground level of the hotel corridor to the second floor. LOCAL VENUES 23

The most romantic venue in the country a magnificent marriage begins in a magnificent place Get in touch to book a private viewing | | 01787 460261 As seen on SbN_Wedding_Venue 01206 262836 Stoke by Nayland Resort, Keepers Lane, Leavenheath, Colchester CO6 4PZ The perfect destination for your wedding weekend

gardens Breathe it all in and enjoy your special day in an outdoor setting BRAXTED PARK ESTATE 01621 770 855 | At the heart of a vast walled estate, you’ll find Braxted Park Estate’s magnificent country house and its stunning gardens. The intimate gardens that connect Braxted House to the grand Wedding Pavilion provide an idyllic setting for any wedding vision. Within the historic Walled Garden guests can enjoy a series of themed ‘rooms’ that include a romantic English Garden, a Knott Garden and an Italian Garden. The year-round interest each provides creates beautiful and varied backdrops for wedding photographs. Celebrate in style Combing elegance and romance throughout its interior, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to saying, ‘I do’. The Orangery exudes romance, with Roman-inspired murals and arched windows that look out over the grounds. Alternatively, during the warmer months, tie the knot outdoors at the heart of the walled garden as your guests soak up the sun. Braxted Park Estate even has its own church, so you could have a religious ceremony just a few minutes away from the house should you wish to. Each option is capable of seating up to 170 guests. When it comes to receptions, The Pavilion is perfectly equipped for parties both large and small. This versatile space offers plenty of room for up to 350 guests and comes with neutral décor so you can truly make it your own. The in-house catering team are on hand to create some spectacular menus for your special day, while come evening, a state-ofthe-art sound and lighting system and huge dancefloor ensures you can enjoy yourselves long into the night. We love... The Garden Cottage really stands out and offers couples the perfect place to retire to after a day of celebrating, while loved ones can enjoy a relaxing night’s stay just a few steps from the Pavilion, too. GLORIOUS 25 THEMED VENUES

THE LAWN CONFERENCE & BANQUETING CENTRE 01702 203 669 | The Lawn is nestled within three acres of perfectly striped lawns, wonderful seasonally planted flower beds, blossom trees and a stunning rose garden which, with its miniature privet hedges, makes the most perfect backdrop for an outdoor wedding in the stunning gazebo. This all sits within The Lawn Estate with its 120 acres of rolling parkland and ancient woods. The beautiful Georgian Manor House with 100ft of covered, colonnaded Terrace has an outside bar during the summer. Time to celebrate Ceremony capacity in the Grand Hall is up to 100 guests seated (more with additional guests standing) or up to 130 for outside weddings in the wedding gazebo. Everything effectively revolves around the Grand Hall which acts as the hub with the bar, dancefloor, Blue Drawing Room and stunning airconditioned Orangery (dining room) all spoking from it, creating the most fabulous entertaining and party space. The capacity for the Grand Hall and its linked rooms is 150 and for the Orangery, 130 seated. We love... The beautiful views of the gardens and the light afforded by the classic large Georgian windows in every room, including the Orangery. The grounds and house together form the perfect backdrop for photography. HYLANDS ESTATE 01245 605 500 | Award-winning Grade II listed mansion, Hylands House, is set in 574 acres of landscaped parkland. Here, you’ll find the beautifully restored ceremony and reception rooms, plus the Grand Pavilion and outdoor wedding ceremony garden a few steps away. Stunning parkland and never-ending views of the Essex skyline are all around you. The grounds and formal gardens within Hylands Estate offer the dream setting for your wedding photos. Take a stroll into the Pleasure Gardens filled with seasonal flowers, including the venue’s famous wisteria. The outdoor wedding ceremony garden gives couples the chance to say their vows under the graceful tree canopy of the Estate’s woodland. Time to celebrate The beautifully restored neo-baroque Banqueting Room provides a perfect setting for your wedding ceremony for up to 100 guests. With 24 carat gold leaf and scroll decorations, silk lined walls and hand painted wall motifs, this opulent space provides a stunning backdrop for your wedding ceremony or reception. The Drawing Room is a remarkable space for up to 100 guests. It has a fabulously ornate and gilded ceiling, complemented by the beautiful, hand-painted wall motifs and a stunning marble fireplace. The new outdoor ceremony garden gives couples the chance to say their vows under the graceful tree canopy of the Estate’s woodland. The area includes a bespoke oak structure for couples and wooden seating in keeping with the woodland theme. Complete with sparkling chandeliers and ivory drapes, the Grand Pavilion offers a stylish celebration space for up to 300 guests for a reception or ceremony. It’s perfect for you to decorate in your own way. We love... The Wisteria Room is a breath-taking suite with huge antique mirrors to give brides a full view of their dress. There’s hanging space to accommodate long wedding veils, dress trains and accessories. With fantastic views of the back lawn, the Wisteria Room is decorated with beautiful hand-painted images of the cascading purple flowers of this climbing plant – a key feature of the Estate’s Pleasure Gardens. 26

spacious rooms • modern pavilion • stunning gardens See for yourself why Hylands is the perfect place for your dream wedding. Join us for our next Wedding Showcase on Sunday 14th April. Free Entry! Scan the QR code to find out more and reserve your show round. T: 01245 476444 Set in the Essex Countryside resides Pontlands Park, a Victorian house sympathetically extended into a beautiful wedding venue with 35 bedrooms. With a choice of indoor and outdoor ceremony facilities and various function rooms, along with a marquee with its own internal private bar, Pontlands is the perfect venue for intimate or larger weddings. The Dream Wedding packages start from as little as £75.00pp, which includes a 3-course wedding breakfast, reception drink and canapes* (Gold and Platinum packages only), half a bottle of wine and a glass of fizz for the toast plus an evening buffet. Contact the team for further information on 01245 476444 or email WEST HANNINGFIELD ROAD, GREAT BADDOW, CHELMSFORD, ESSEX CM2 8HR

Set in three acres of beautifully manicured gardens, The Lawn is a truly enchanting, award-winning Manor House wedding venue with a stunning Orangery, galleried Grand Hall and delightful gazebo. Perfect for any size wedding, for any season. To find out why we remain one of the most sought aer and best reviewed venues in Essex, contact us to arrange a viewing or visit and let us put together a tailored online quotation based on your precise requirements. Hall Road, Rochford, Essex SS4 1PL 01702 203669 | That Amazing Place Hubbards Hall Drive, off Churchgate Street, Old Harlow, Essex, CM17 0NH 01279 354455 EXCLUSIVE USE COUNTRY HOUSE WITH HONEYMOON COTTAGE & 14 BEDROOMS, SLEEPING 31 GUESTS Pre-wedding accommodation available in The Wedding Lodge, with bridal preparation rooms, sleeping 8 guests.

THAT AMAZING PLACE 01279 354 455 | Nestled in the Essex countryside, this 15th century Grade II listed former monastery has been beautifully refurbished, with every detail lovingly restored to highlight the venue’s history with a contemporary twist. Exclusively yours, with a picturesque location and breathtaking views of the grounds and lake, That Amazing Place offers a perfect backdrop for your special day. From the long driveway up to the house on arrival, to sipping reception drinks on the patio with views of the lake, all of your guests will enjoy the stunning scenery That Amazing Place has to offer. Time to celebrate Say your vows in The Lakeview Lounge (70 guests), The Hall (100 guests), the Outdoor Gazebo (150 guests) or the Marquee Gazebo (150 Guests), then enjoy a wedding breakfast for up to 80 seated friends and family in The Hall – or up to 150 in the marquee. You can then party the night away with a reception for up to 200 of your favourite people. We love... The venue offers full use of the manor house, facilities plus a honeymoon suite and 14 deluxe bedrooms (sleeping up to 31 guests)! You can also stay the night before your wedding in their bridal preparation house, sleeping up to eight people. HEDINGHAM CASTLE 01787 460 261 | Hedingham Castle is set within 160 acres of stunning Essex countryside including the beautifully restored gardens in the immediate area below the Castle – the perfect backdrop for wedding photography. Our favourite spot is the lake, with the Castle behind, or in between the huge Wellingtonia trees at the bottom of the formal pond. The history of Hedingham spans almost a millennium, with the Castle almost 900 years old. Its imposing Norman architecture is iconic and the Castle is a landmark in its own right and can be seen for miles around, standing at over 70ft tall. The majestic Castle is arguably the best preserved Norman Keep of its kind in the country, both inside and out. Celebrate in style All ceremonies take place in the Banqueting Hall within the Castle, with its breathtaking atmosphere and impressive double height arch. The room is lit with candles and two grand chandeliers to give the space the most incredible romance. The acoustics are superb and many choose to have a string quartet play as the bride walks down the aisle. Receptions can take place in either the elegant Ballroom Marquee, which is a permanent structure adjoining the Mansion House and includes drinks in the Hall of the House and lakeside lawn before dinner. Or, for smaller weddings, you can hold your entire day in the Castle, dining in the Tapestry Room and then continuing the party on the floor above with drinks and dancing. We love... The Royal Chamber - a magnificent honeymoon retreat situated inside the Castle on the top floor, complete with a stunning four poster bed, double bath, breathtaking views and brimming with character. Couples really can sleep like royalty on their wedding night! Vikki Watts Photography Andy Griffin LOCAL VENUES 29

Fresh. Innovative. Personal. Feast Company - A duo with a passion to create bespoke special moments with amazing food and a love for what we do. 07525 619674 / 07903 941788 Catering for Weddings, events & special occasions. 07921 291785 Get in Touch! EMAIL: | WEBSITE: | INSTAGRAM: @4underclothing STREETWEAR CLOTHING BRAND DRAWING ON MUSIC INFLUENCES AND TATTOO IMAGERY. We are a streetwear clothing brand that offer fully personalised t-shirts including the Love Tour, a band tour design with your meaningful dates on the rear of the shirt. They make special, thoughtful gifts or really memorable favors for your guests or wedding party. Our t-shirts and hoodies are high quality, organic cotton from FairWear sustainable sources.

my world Megan and Ollie’s quirky wedding at The Canary Shed was a festival of colour, dance and good vibes Images courtesy of Abigail Steed Photography The couple describe their meeting as ‘a swipe right romance’, meeting on Bumble some six years ago. Since then, they’ve fallen in love over a shared obsession of listening to vinyl, going to gigs and learning new instruments. Megan tells us, “Everyone was surprised when we got engaged as we’re not a couple based on tradition. However, it was the easiest yes in the world. Ollie took me to the pub where we first met, and as we walked up to it, he asked where I had stood whilst I waited for him. As I pointed out the spot, he took the ring out of his pocket, went down on one knee and held out the most perfect engagement ring; a diamond set between two skulls. That evening we did exactly what we did on our first date, visited every pub again and got a donner kebab on the way home, perfect!” Megan Greenlees and Oliver Shutler tied the knot at The Canary Shed on 9th September, 2023. Here, the couple share some of their favourite moments from the big day... YOU ROCK 31 REAL WEDDINGS

We met Chloe from The Copper Cacti through the venue, and we instantly knew she would be perfect. What Chloe offers is so unique and her skill at creating beauty through greenery, succulents and cacti is outstanding. We wanted each stage of the wedding to be fun and fully reflective of us, so Ollie, a carpenter, took on the job of making all our signs and seating chart whilst our creative friends helped decorate them. Instantly we felt The Canary Shed reflected our personalities; unique, a bit quirky and not traditional in the slightest. We were both very nervous for the ceremony as it was the most formal part of the day where all the attention was on us, but it became our favourite part which surprised us both. The staff couldn’t have been nicer, we fell in love instantly and booked it straight away, the weekend date being a year to the day we got engaged. 32

In keeping with our love of rock music and skulls, Sarah Edwards Cakes created individually decorated skull cookies which looked amazing and were extremely tasty. Megan wore a Rixo Dress with a full-length Self Portrait cape. It was accessorised with Miu Miu shoes and headband, bringing the sparkle to the outfit. Leigh on Sea Brewery provided a fantastic range of beers, IPAs, and lagers in 500ml cans. Both delicious and stylish, the multicoloured can designs fit right in with the venue. Fran from Olive & Ivy Essex creates amazing graze boards and after seeing what she created for another wedding we knew it’s exactly what we wanted. Half pick n mix, half baked goods, it was a hit all night and a brilliant dessert alternative. Ollie wore a one-off vintage three-piece suit from Blackout II in Covent Garden. It was cotton denim and stood out from the rest of the groomsmen. The Feast Company offered such a vast number of options we were blown away. We were drawn to the BBQ option for the day and a pie and chip van for the evening. 33 REAL WEDDINGS

TOP TIP! I know everyone says it but this is your day, do what you want and what makes you happy even if it’s not what anyone else would do. Our evening band, Rock Out, started as soon as we had finished our first dance and played hit after hit of rock covers, taking requests through the night. Post ceremony cocktails and sliders was accompanied by an acoustic band, Sunbird Duo, who played three sets. MEGAN AND OLLIE’S CONTACTS Venue, | Photographer, | Dress, Rixo Cape, Self Portrait | Hair, | Suit, | Catering,| Dessert grazing board, | Flowers, | Wedding rings, Wedding accommodation, | Local beers, | Gin favours, | T shirt favours, | Cookie favours, | Bands, Finally, another favour for guests were our ‘Love Tour’ t shirts, by 4under - which included mini versions for the babies and kids. The design was inspired by band tour t shirts, on the front a skull bride & groom whilst on the back it listed the date and location of our memorable moments - our very own Love Tour! They were a huge hit and lots of people ended up wearing them in the evening. The bridesmaids all decided to wear a different bright colour, some wearing long dresses some wearing short. We were also very nervous for the first dance. After practising in the kitchen to multiple song options, we found our perfect track, The Big Moon cover of Praise You. 34

Outside wedding garden, hotel facilities, including bridal preparation areas, stunning grounds for beautiful photos, experience and quality cuisine, Channels Estate really does tick all the boxes! With a stunning outside ceremony garden, you can tie the knot under the beautiful thatched cart house. With antique pews, its known as the “Church without a Roof”. Of course if the weather isn’t being fair, then you have the option of marrying in the Essex Barn. The catering at Channels is all in-house, and the experienced team pride themselves on being flexible and accommodating to individual requirements. Every wedding day is unique to the couples preferences. Channels Estate also holds a 30+ luxury hotel, it boasts some of the finest accommodation in Essex, with a dedicated Bridal house the night before, with hot tub, and preparation areas. Then the glorious Oak Suite for the first night of your married lives. Situated just north of Chelmsford, the beautifully restored 17th century, thatched Essex Barn is the idyllic venue for your special day. Over 40 years of unforgettable wedding days To request for a brochure, with prices and menus. Contact or 01245 440005 (ext 2) CHANNELS ESTATE PRATTS FARM LANE EAST, CHELMSFORD, CM3 3PT

Rainy Bakes Bespoke Cakes Bespoke cakes are made to order for any occasion any size. Get in Touch! Rainy Bakes Bespoke Cakes 07535 010081 OYSTERS - CHAMPAGNE - CAVIAR OYSTERS AT YOUR WEDDING? THE OYSTER SOCIETY A Premium Mobile Event Caterer from London, offering Exclusive Services with expert Oyster Shuckers and Champagne Walkers. + The perfect addition to elevate your Wedding with Luxury! At The Oyster Society we cater Weddings and Events across the UK. @ . . @ . . Let’s chat. I’d love to learn about your love story and discuss how we can make your wedding memories unforgettable. Preserving timeless memories as your Essex wedding photographer, one frame at a time. From tears of joy to laughter shared, I’ll capture the essence of your special day! | 07715 269895 Are you looking for a wedding photographer in Essex who can truly capture the essence of your special day? Every wedding is as unique as the couple it celebrates, and that’s why we don’t follow a one-sizefits-all approach. We tailor our services to suit your style, preferences, and vision. Eyelash Extensions | Lash Lift and Tint | Lash Removal | Brow Services | Eyelash Products | Lash Maintenance | Nail services WHAT WE DO | 07359 036700 GET IN TOUCH xoxo_charlotteamelia Enhance Your Natural Beauty We specialize in providing high-quality eyelash, eyebrow and nail treatments that enhance your natural beauty and make you feel like royalty.