Your Kent Wedding - September/October 2022 (Issue 104)

SEPT/OCT 2022 £3.55 HONEYMOONS, BEAUTY, FASHION, GROOMS, EXPERT ADVICE, FREEBIES AND MORE WIN! A honeymoon in Portugal Our A-Z of wedding dress shopping Take it or SLEEVE IT Kent’s historical venues Cover up with this top trend PALETTE PERFECTION Floral inspiration to suit your colour scheme Rock that frock History in THE MAKING

Unique character, original features and old style grandeur to host your dream day Exclusive use of our wedding spaces to enjoy your celebrations in complete privacy Fully licenced for civil ceremonies and an exclusive catering company to create dishes to wow your guests From large and lavish to small and intimate, we welcome all weddings with a personable and professional service | | 01322 526 574 Bourme Road, Bexley, Kent, DA5 1PQ

REGULARS 7 EDITOR’S LETTER A warm welcome from Kelly 9 NEARLYWED NEWS Catch up on news from around the county 13 FREEBIES & OFFERS Great giveaways and discounts up for grabs 77 HOT TOPIC Stellar wedmin advice from those in the know 105 COMPETITION WIN! A honeymoon in Portugal CONTENTS SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2022 On the cover This issue’s cover was captured by at the beautiful Turn to page 70 to discover more from this gorgeous shoot. 51 23 FEATURES 57 PUMPKIN PATCH PROMISES We love this showcase of celebrant-led ceremony options with a seasonal and sustainable twist 61 CITRUS BRIGHTS If pastels aren’t for you, check out this sunny, bold alternative 65 I LOVE YOU A BUNCH Popular palette inspiration aplenty provided by the county’s wedding florists 70 IN AN ENGLISH COUNTRY GARDEN You can almost smell the fragrant flowers as you enjoy the images from this local beauty 82 ROCK THAT FROCK Dive in to our ultimate guide to shopping for the one 97 OUR HAPPILY EVER AFTER County Wedding Magazines’ senior editor Melissa Cullen shares her wedding planning journey 77 VENUES 17 SPOTLIGHT ON... Maidstone & Medway 23 PERIOD PIECE We round up the county’s historical venues 3

REAL WEDDINGS 32 FANTASTICALLY FLORAL Leah and Lee opted for a rose gold, blush and grey palette for their wedding day, 23rd April, 2022 39 FROM THE HEART Cozette and Alex said “I do” at St Nicholas Church in Southfleet on 2nd July, 2021 45 CHILDHOOD SWEETHEARTS Rebeca and Gary tied the knot at The Oak Barn, which they styled with a pretty countryside theme 51 LOCKDOWN LOVE It was love at first click for Lora and Rachel who were married at The Ferry House, Sheerness HONEYMOONS 101 THE ULTIMATE GETAWAY Discover why Dubrovnik is the perfect honeymoon destination FASHION & BEAUTY 89 STANDOUT SLEEVES These statement dresses will take you from day to dancefloor 92 BEAUTY BUZZ Get the look with the must-haves for the bride-to-be 94 BEAUTY Q&A Our local professionals solve your problems 57 39 89 32 92 61 4

Kent based wedding cake exper ts with 10 years’ experience, Jo and Sonja provide an exclusive bespoke service to capture your vision for your perfect wedding cake. Private consultations available, please contact us and see how we can help you. WWW.WH I T S TAB L EC AK E . COM 01227 907815 THE WHI TSTABLE CAKE COMPANY • CHURCH STREET • WHI TSTABLE • CT5 1P J Creative Wedding Storytelling C O N T E M P O R A R Y B O U D O I R P H O T O G R A P H Y S T U D I O 07939 137142 At Love Lane Photography we shoot contemporary boudoir portraits in our all female studio. We provide professional hair and make-up and beautiful products suitable to gift the special person in your life. CL ICK HERE FOR BRIDAL BOUDOIR PHOTOSHOOT OFFER If you are looking for a venue that can make your day truly unique please contact Jules Berry on Set in the heart of the lush Kent countryside Brenley Farm has been carefully managed by the Berry family for many generations. The house and surrounding farm buildings are Grade II listed making it a beautiful setting to host your special day. We offer a more informal approach to the wedding industry, providing a location where you are free to use your own suppliers or our recommended ones and tailor your day to meet your needs whether you have 20 guests or 150. We have two licenced ceremony spaces and different reception choices enabling you to adapt the venue to suit your needs, taste and budget - and with onsite accommodation for thirty plus, there is no need for your guests to go far. BRENLEY FARM HOUSE Brenley Lane | Boughton | Faversham | Kent | ME13 9LY At Brenley we give you the freedom to design your own special day.

After months, even years, of reading my excited babble about our dear CWM colleague Melissa’s wedding day, you may be relieved to hear that it finally happened, and what a day it was! I’ll leave the storytelling to the bride herself, as you can read all about it from page 97, but I would like to impart a little of my own bridesmaid’s wisdom centred around the morning preparations. These moments were the highlight for me, and it’s a part of the day often overlooked amongst the hubbub of wedding planning, so… ❤ Be as organised as you possibly can in the lead up. This way, you’ll have very little to worry about on the day. Admittedly, Melissa’s abilities in this area are superhuman, but knowing we weren’t allowed into the venue to set up until 10am she’d put together individual boxes containing everything each reception table needed. All we had to do when we arrived was unpack them in the right place. We were done in no time, stress free and ready to be beautified. ❤ When you have your trial, be sure to discuss with your hair and make-up artists the morning’s timings. Understanding whether there’ll be any travel time to the ceremony involved; or restrictions such as when you’re allowed entry to the venue, if you’re getting ready there, will help them work out where they should be up to and when. Melissa’s team had everything running like clockwork in a very tight time frame. ❤ Enjoy every moment. I can’t explain how special these few hours spent with our bride were. Chaotic and gone in a flash, but oh-so precious. I spent a significant proportion of it in tears and I could probably count the number of times I’ve happy cried prior to this on one hand! As we waited for Melissa to be called in to see the registrar, only the four of us remained in the cottage, and a hush descended for the first time that day as the bride centred herself and absorbed the enormity of what was about to happen. I swear I’ll never forget that time, my heart nearly beat right out of my chest with love for my amazing friends. My point is this: devote some of your planning time to the morning preparations and when your photographer offers you the option of capturing them, take them up on it. You won’t regret it, promise. Now, while I leave you and mull over what on Earth I’m going to regale you with now the wedding is over, I hope you enjoy this issue. It’s bursting at the seams with inspiration! We’ve taken a look into the world of wedding flowers, one of my favourite subjects, and put together an indispensable A to Z guide to dress shopping not to be missed. Enjoy and keeeep planning! Kelly x ISSN 1746-9384 EDITORIAL 01376 535 611 Kelly Andrews | Deputy Managing Editor, Beauty Editor Danielle Harvey | Managing Editor Claire Ridley | Fashion Editor Melissa Cullen | Senior Editor, Grooms and Travel Editor DESIGN 01376 535 616 Graphic Designers | Stephanie Hodder | Vicky O’Connor Production Assistant | Lorna Butcher Digital Marketing Coordinator Katie Laley Web Development Manager Stuart Weatherley ADVERTISING Sales & Events Director Sarah Ellis | 01376 538 490 Account Manager Julia Owen | 01376 538 495 ACCOUNTS 01376 535 616 Accounting Manager | Derrick James Your Kent Wedding is solely owned, published and designed by KD Media Publishing. 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. Your Kent Wedding is published six times a year. @CountyWeddingMagazines @CountyWeddings @countyweddingmagazines Visit us online at and Kelly Andrews, editor and bridesmaid Best day ever! MEDIA PUBLISHING VENTS UBLISHING EVENTS & PUBLISHING cwe COUNTY WEDDING EVENTS They did it ! EDITOR’S LETTER 7

A boutique-style salon offering a unique, one-to-one appointment system. Relax and be spoilt in your own personal oasis. Wedding packages starting from £125! High quality treatments, products and services at affordable prices. Caesar Court Mongeham Road Great Mongeham Deal CT14 9FT 07976 372 860 UNISEX HAIR SALON BRIDAL HAIR & MAKE-UP HOLISTIC THERAPY SALON Weddings at The Alexander Centre, Faversham Why not say ‘I Do’ at the Alex?We’re a dab hand at putting on a great wedding and we have space to accommodate ceremonies and receptions - both can be indvidually decorated too, to create your own unique wedding look and feel! Our elegant ceremony room is a beautiful, light-filled space for you and up to 50 guests. For your reception The GatefieldHall comfortably accommodates 150 guests for a sit-downmeal and has plenty of space for partying! Our pretty walled garden, a great space for a BBQ, can be dressed with bunting, and fairy lights and even accommodate a bouncy castle to entertain the young or young at heart. All our wedding parties have access to a fully licensed bar as well as a full-size catering kitchen so you can bring in your own preferred caterer, or let us organise this for you. For more information 01795 591691

NEWS Nearlywed Catch up on the latest from around the county HOT CAKES Surviving one of the hottest British summers on record has made us wonder: is it still possible for couples to have their dream cake in the blistering conditions that are set to become a regularity over the years to come? We’ve heard one or two disaster stories about melting, collapsing bakes! However, having chatted to Claudia Newberry at Purple Flour we’re delighted to report that the answer, without compromise is, “Yes!” Purple Flour has just delivered beautiful buttercream cakes, ganache masterpieces, and traditional iced classics, as well as naked and semi-naked creations all in the beautiful sunshine. We asked Claudia what her secret is! “The key is simple: planning,” she says. “You need to work with the whole wedding team, from the caterers, florists, venue and of course the couples to agree on three things. Firstly, how you’re going to store the cake before it goes on display. Secondly, where are you going to display your creation? And lastly, when are you going to cut it? “We spent many an afternoon adding the finishing touches to our cakes while sitting on champagne crates in the back of a chiller van! You just need to plan. Cake in the sun? Heck yeah!” Have a word with the experts at DATE FOR THE DIARY Start planning your big day with The Dover Marina Hotel & Spa at its wedding fair on Sunday 25th September 2022, where you can meet recommended local wedding suppliers, find inspiration and tour the venue. The fair is open from 11am to 3pm, entry is free and no booking is required. With its glorious seafront location, beautiful bridal suite and boutique feel The Dover Marina Hotel & Spa is a must-visit wedding venue in the heart of Kent with space to accommodate up to 190 guests. This four-star Victorian building provides a memorable backdrop to your celebrations, complete with elegant interiors and breathtaking views of Dover beach, Dover Castle and the magnificent White Cliffs. Check out BY THE SEASIDE Continuing its mission to bring happy hotels to historical buildings on some of Britain’s most desirable streets, spring 2023 will see the boutique hospitality group GuestHouse open the doors to the third property in its portfolio in Margate. No.42 Margate will embrace the nostalgia we know and love from this sunny seaside town. Housed in a Victorian beauty of a beachfront building it will include 21 bedrooms, a restaurant, rooftop, and spa where the town’s open love of uniquely English quirks will be felt all around. Since the 18th century Margate has offered a home to eccentric English traditions, from iconic Dreamland and its listed rollercoaster and menagerie cages, to the unexplained shell grotto and beachside activities. With interiors that playfully draw from the motifs and subtle references that embrace the town’s nature, No.42 will be the perfect base for a hen or stag do, or minimoon to remember. Check out  LOCAL NEWS 9

V.I.PETS Searches for “pets at weddings” are up 200 per cent since 2020 proving couples are increasingly looking to give their furry friends a starring role in their special day. This recent data from Google comes as no surprise to the team at Salomons Estate in Tunbridge Wells, who have seen a sharp increase in the number of enquiries from couples looking to book pet-friendly ceremonies. “For some, it’s non-neogtiable. Many couples we speak to book with us on the basis that their dog can be present for the ‘I dos,’ photos and drinks reception,” says commercial sales manager Courtney Smith. From delightful miniature outfits to adorable photography, Salomons Estate, which took first place in the Best Events Team category at the Kent Wedding Awards 21/22, has seen loved-up pet owners making their furry friend a ring bearer, flowergirl or groomsman. Amongst the biggest wedding trends of 2022 the venue also lists grazing tables and outdoor pizza ovens as popular options, with the return of big weddings, which are making a comeback following the pandemic. For further information on tying the knot at Salomons, head over to THE GIFT OF TIME Goldsmiths, one of the UK’s leading watch and jewellery retailers, has opened its latest luxury concept showroom at Bluewater Shopping Centre in Kent. The new store boasts a fresh feel embracing a modern and relaxed way to browse its line up of timepieces and fine jewellery brands. Here you’ll find a vast collection of luxury Swiss watches and be given the chance to experience such latest releases at Tudor’s iconic Black Bay collection. Also on display is the new Oris PPX with chic coloured dials. Craig Bolton, president of the Watches of Switzerland Group, UK & Europe says, “Our goal is to make everyone feel valued and at home when visiting our showrooms.” To find out more, check out ALL THE FUN OF THE FAIR White Sky Events is delighted to have been asked to produce The Kent Wedding Fair at The Hop Farm, with its first show being held on Sunday 9th October. The event is open from 10.30am until 2.30pm and should attract around 50 exhibitors. Planning a wedding can be a daunting task, so The Kent Wedding Fair gives you the chance to discover what suppliers are right for you in a relaxed environment, making your wedding planning simple and stress free. These events bring together the best local wedding suppliers and specialists in the industry, dedicated to making your special day perfect. With a huge variety of different experts, catering to all tastes and budgets, this is also a great place to get some exciting ideas and inspiration. Family friendly, there are no restrictions on how many loved ones you bring with you on the day. You’ll be treated to a goody bag on entry, along with a complimentary wedding magazine. Plus, there are lots of great on-the-day deals and discounts up for grabs. The event is free attend and no tickets are required. You can pre-register online to book your arrival timeslot and beat the queues, or simply come along on the day. Just head over to 10

O N E O F T H E U K ’ S M O S T E XT R A O R D I N A RY A N D S P E C TA C U L A R W E D D I N G V E N U E S A m a g i c a l p l a c e t o d i n e a n d d a n c e t h e n i g h t a w a y , o u r s t u n n i n g n e w l y a p p o i n t e d g l a s s o r a n g e r y a n d t e r r a c e . a s p i n a l l f o u n d a t i o n . o r g / w e d d i n g s | 0 1 3 0 3 2 3 4 1 1 1 N r . A s h f o r d , K e n t , C T 2 1 4 P D A r t i s t ’ s i m p r e s s i o n

Do C ap one S vice Whether just for the wedding ceremony, some photos to treasure, or your full day, Here Comes the Hound Dog Chaperone Service can be your dog’s Plus One to make sure they are taken care of during your special day! 07468 697938 WWW . HE R E COME S T HEHOUND . CO . UK 07973 444664 | A Foxy Celebrant for Foxy Couples, creating Foxy Ceremonies you’ll be proud of! LONDON, THE SOUTH EAST AND BEYOND! Wedding Photographer Passionate about People! Passionate about Photography! At Face 2 Face, our aim is simple... to create a beautiful set of images that reflect your style and personality. We believe that capturing emotions is the key to creating the storybook of your life or business. Capturing moments as they happen Established over 18 years, featured in OK magazine. Based in Kent covering Essex, Sussex, Surrey, nationwide and overseas. 01892 838469

ENTER ONLINE AT WWW.YOURKENT.WEDDING Closing date 31st October, unless otherwise stated. Terms & conditions apply. Great giveaways and discounts up for grabs IN GOOD HANDS We know how important it is to have everyone special to you present on your big day, and that includes your furry best friend. That’s where Kent-based pet chaperone service, Here Comes The Hound can help. They understand that everyone you’d trust to look after your dearest fur baby will be at the wedding enjoying themselves, as they should. So, you’ll need another pair of helping, trustworthy hands. The team at Here Comes The Hound are experts in all things dog care, so whether you want your woofer to have a starring role as ring bearer or flowergirl, be the surprise guest of honour, or just be there for some magical photography moments, they’ve got you covered, making your day one to remember. From training for their special role in the lead up, to dog taxi service, working with your photographer to capture those treasured moments, and even wedding-night sleepovers, the team will work with you to create a bespoke package that suits you and your dog, ensuring you’re both comfortable and content. So, relax and enjoy your day knowing that your VIPooch is being well looked after. We’re partnered with this local lovely to offer Your Kent Wedding readers a low booking deposit along with £50 off the full package price and £20 off the evening package. To claim this fab offer, simply get in touch via and quote “Your Kent Wedding.” ACCESSORISE AND SHINE Award-winning Danish brand Sif Jakobs Jewellery is renowned for creating modern, luxurious designs with an affordable price tag. The jewellery is made of rhodium,18k rose gold or yellow gold plated 925 sterling silver, featuring high-quality zirconia stones that create a sophisticated and dramatic expression often featured in Sif Jakobs’ collections. County Wedding Magazines has teamed up with Sif Jakobs Jewellery to give readers the chance to win this necklace and earring set worth £158 from the coveted Belluno collection. Made with 925 sterling silver and the highest quality cubic zirconia, all jewellery is handcrafted and carefully inspected to ensure perfection. Visit Freebies &OFFERS FREEBIES & OFFERS 13

01634 235059 - - The BarnYard, Oak Lane, Upchurch, Sittingbourne, Kent. ME9 7EZ • Rustic barn, with fairylit oak rafters • Licensed for civil ceremonies • Choice of Apple Barn or courtyard gazebo to be married in • Capacity up to 200 evening guests • ‘Twilight’ wedding available • A stunning new dressing room • State of the art DJ with lighting • Flexible, experienced & friendly wedding team • Inclusive wedding package available • Exquisite fine dining menus • Stunning photo opportunities • Beautiful fairylit grounds A brand new rustic wedding area within the grounds of The BarnYard. With its own CourtYard, it is simply gorgeous - it will be love at first sight! The Apple Barn Welcome to our new wedding area... Brand New Wedding Packages and much more... Report carpet entry ● Private exclusive use of one of our elegant sutes ● Arrival champagne reception Set menu wedding breakfast ● Carefully selected drinks package ● Evening entertainment ● Chair covers & sashes White table cloths and linen ● Service from our experienced wedding coordinator ● Newly appointecd bridal suite Dover Waterfront, Dover, Kent CT17 9BP | 01304 203633 | DOVER MARINA HOTEL & SPA

Offering: ◦ Gazebo Ceremony over the lake ◦ Exclusive wedding packages ◦ On site wedding planner ◦ Accomodation ◦ Amazing photo opportunities Set on an idyllic lake, surrounded by 3 acres of natural woodland, the Inn on the Lake makes for an unforgettable wedding venue Contact our events team today to begin planning your dream wedding Inn on the Lake, Watling Street, Shorne, Kent ,DA12 3HB 01474 823333

Maidstone and Medway SPOTLIGHT ON... Tie the knot in a local hotspot THE HISTORIC DOCKYARD CHATHAM 01634 823 846 | Set among 400 years of maritime history, Kent’s Historic Dockyard Chatham provides an iconic backdrop for your big day. Complete with spectacular architecture these historical venues can be transformed to suit any theme. Commissioner’s House, Britain’s oldest naval building is an elegant Georgian-style building offering a choice of newlydecorated rooms. The Sunne Room offers breathtaking views over the landscapped Commissioner’s Garden and a balcony perfect for your bouquet toss! This beautiful Georgian room can host ceremonies with up to 70 guests. Located on the ground floor of the Commissioner’s House, the Ballroom is wonderfully light and airy and has doors leading out onto the patio. A memorable space it too can accommodate 70. The patio offers a lovely spot for an idyllic summer ceremony. Here you can soak up the sunshine and it boasts two options for your walk down the aisle. It can seat around 80 loved ones for the “I dos.” HMS Gannet is a Victorian sloop, surely one of the most unusual venues in Kent. The Captain’s Cabin can seat up to 40 loved ones for intimate ceremonies while the main deck is perfect for up to 70. Enjoy drinks on board before your party makes its way to Commissioner’s House for the rest of the day. All receptions take place in the Commissioner’s House and Gardens. It can accommodate 120 nearest and dearest for a seated wedding breakfast and 200 for the evening bash. https://joellenpictures. LOCAL VENUES 17

THE ROCHESTER CORN EXCHANGE 01634 338 112 | This luxurious and imposing Grade I listed building was constructed in 1706 by the rather splendidly named Admiral Sir Cloudsley Shovel, whose coat of arms can be found above the High Street entrance. It has enjoyed a varied history as a butchers market, a courtroom, a concert hall and a cinema. For the past 100 years it has functioned as Rochester’s premier venue for parties, events and weddings offering you the flexibility to enjoy the day of your dreams in a historical setting. Located just off the beautifully preserved Victorian High Street, famous for its connections with Charles Dickens, the venue is close to the cobbled Boley Hill that links the High Street through an ancient gateway to the moat of Rochester Castle and Gardens on your right, and to the left Rochester Cathedral. The Queens Hall is the largest space here for ceremonies and receptions hosting up to 300 loved ones (or 275 with a dancefloor). A luxurious space with wow factor, its stunning architectural features include high ceilings, sparkling chandeliers and impressive windows. This room can be configured to suit weddings of all sizes and can host wedding breakfasts, sit-down meals and evening celebrations. The Princes Hall is suitable for more intimately sized events and can host up to 80 nearest and dearest for ceremonies. It can also act as a welcome area for drinks and canapés when used in conjunction with The Queens Hall, linked together by the grand sweep of the staircase. Rochester Corn Exchange uses a number of specially selected caterers to suit all budgets, tastes and types of wedding including Asian and AfroCaribbean. The three existing packages, The Cathedral, The Castle and The Courtyard all give exclusive access to the venue. BRIDGEWOOD MANOR HOTEL & SPA 01634 201 333 | With space for 180 wedding guests at this charming hotel, everything you’ll ever need for your big day will be taken care of by its team of specialist wedding coordinators, who take pride in their outstanding knowledge of local suppliers. Whatever you need, whether it’s a bespoke floral arrangement or wow-factor evening entertainment, they’ll organise it for you. What’s more, with easy access to the M2, M20 and M25 you can rest assured knowing guests will be able to find you easily at Bridgewood Manor. Plus, the hotel is designed around an inner courtyard, a fantastic location for drinks receptions and those allimportant photographs. The Hythe Suite is a large, bright and airy space overlooking the courtyard and flooded with natural light. A partition wall separates the main function suite from the bar area, making it flexible and easily transformed from day to evening. There’s ample space for 180 for the ceremony and reception. Slightly smaller, The Hogarth Suite, also bright and spacious, boasts high ceilings and a separate bar. It can accommodate 120 from “I dos” to dancing. More intimate spaces for the ceremony include the Stratford and Maidstone Suites, both with room for 40 nearest and dearest. The former looks out onto a small patio, while the latter has views over the hotel’s courtyard and it’s neutral décor makes it the ideal blank canvas. 18

Breathtakingly beautiful. Exclusively yours. Steeped in history, exquisite rooms, locally sourced food and magnificent grounds, Bradbourne House truly is the perfect setting for your special day. | 01732 897436 East Malling, Kent, ME19 6DZ (Only one hour from central London) Photographer - Alan Harbord

Celebrate your special day at our stunning 4-star hotel in the idyllic Kent countryside! Hold your perfect wedding with us and enjoy: – All-inclusive wedding packages for up to 150 guests, including BBQ or afternoon tea options – Scenic outdoor spaces for your wedding photography – Comfortable hotel rooms and on-site parking At Mercure Tunbridge Wells +44 (0)1892 628 298 Contact us To start planning your dream wedding, contact our friendly team! Your happy ever af ter is waiting… £70 per person

ST. GEORGE HOTEL 01634 841 012 | Located in the heart of historical Medway, the St. George Hotel is ideally situated for those looking to experience the magnificent sights Kent has to offer while in town for your big day. Within walking distance of Rochester Castle and Cathedral, Fort Amherst and Chatham’s Historic Dockyard there’s so much to see and do. A family-run hotel, the team offers a personal and flexible service, so whatever your vision for your wedding, they’re on hand to make it a reality. Although the hotel doesn’t have its own grounds, it is conveniently located opposite a lovely green featuring a bandstand and beautiful flowerbeds. It’s also close to Rochester Castle so many guests choose to pop over there for photos. The venue has a choice of three licensed spaces all flexible and able to host your whole day. You can say “I do” in the Shorts Brothers Room surrounded by 65 of your nearest and dearest. This space is great for an intimate affair and also has a private bar, so it’s ideal for the ensuing celebrations. The Banqueting Hall, can host 50 to 150 to witness your vows. Moving into the afternoon and evening, it also has a large dancefloor, private bar and is air conditioned to keep you comfortable in the summer. Stanley House Ballroom is the biggest space and can accommodate 80 to 300 guests for ceremony and celebrations. It has a large dancefloor, stage and huge private bar. It also boasts its own entrance. LORDSWOOD LEISURE CENTRE 01634 682 862 | Lordswood Leisure Centre is set in 14 acres of beautiful woodland surroundings in Kent. It has a wedding garden included when you book the Grand Quee Suite, which acts as a fantastic place for mingling and relaxation, especially during the summer. Ceremonies with up to 70 guests are hosted in the garden and Garden Marquee, the most popular spot for weddings here. For larger numbers and ceremony through to celebrations, The Grand Quee Suite can host 500 people. The space features a large silk-lined indoor marquee and there’s an option for a matching divider to be placed in the room. This is ideal if you want to make the space smaller or partition off an area for use later in the day. Inside, there’s an integrated bar for you and your guests to enjoy. The Quee Suite can accommodate up to 150 guests. A smaller alternative to The Grand Quee, it too features a silk-lined indoor marquee and bar. Also fitted inside is coloured mood lighting that can be set to suit your theme or palette. Finally, The Martin Grove Suite boasts modern, neutral décor allowing you to take the blank canvas and create your own theme. Located on the first floor with its own bar, it’s separate from the other function suites and can be hung with silk lining for an additional fee. It can host 150 loved ones. LOCAL VENUES 21

Period piece Our roundup of Kent’s historical venues BRADBOURNE HOUSE 01732 897 436 | Bradbourne House is an exclusive-use, Queen Anne, Grade I listed country house located in the heart of Kent. The House boasts 20 acres of picturesque parkland featuring ancient trees, a tranquil lake and secret garden fruit orchard. From the moment you drive through the iron gates you’re surrounded by pristine striped lawns, and the grounds are home to a plethora of wildlife including hundreds of Canadian geese that return to the lake each year. The venue offers two licensed indoor areas. What would once have been the ladies’ sewing room, The Drawing Room is the perfect spot for intimate ceremonies with up to 50 guests. The bay windows look out across the lakes and gold chandeliers hang from the ceiling. The Great Hall at the heart of the House can host up to 100 nearest and dearest. Its blue walls are one of Bradbourne House’s most memorable features, with the Twisden family portraits adorning each of them. Huge doors lead out to the marble steps at the front and look over the grounds. The Hatton Fruit Garden is the venue’s antique apple and pear orchard. Originally planted as part of the Dig for Victory campaign, the walled gardens now provide that secret spot for you to exchange your vows. You can also say your “I dos” al fresco on The Great Hall Steps, which provide the grandest of entrances. As you ascend and arrive by the side of your beloved, the house itself provides the most spectacular backdrop. The Great Hall can also play host to receptions with 100 seated or 200 standing from a decadent wedding breakfast to that all-important evening bash. The Breakfast Room can accommodate 40 dining guests or 100 standing. It provides a different feel within the House with its dark oak interiors and portraits. Often referred to as the gentleman’s room and complete with grand piano, this space is the perfect setting for intimate meals or relaxing with tea and cake. The Drawing Room, which can host the same numbers as the aforementioned Breakfast Room boasts bay windows practically made to frame the wedding cake, and the ceiling is beautifully ornate, covered in gold detailing. DID YOU KNOW? The house as it stands today was built between 1712 and 1715 and served as the Twisden family home right up until 1937, when the house was auctioned and bought by the East Malling Trust. HISTORICAL VENUES 23

NETTLESTEAD PLACE 01622 328 328 | Still a private family home, Grade I listed Nettlestead Place has hosted many lavish events and celebrations over the centuries. Now, the gorgeous manor house and its surroundings offer a quintessentially English setting for your big day. Set among 10 acres of grounds the award-winning gardens boast their own sunken pond and far-reaching views across the River Medway. Complete with stone walls, archways, secret gardens, a maze and winding pathways, Nettlestead Place offers a wealth of unforgettable photo opportunities. Indoor ceremonies are held in the 13th-century Undercroft, characterised by its three Medieval pillars and vaulted ceiling. The ambience is perfect for the “I dos” offering a historical location fitting for the occasion. Outdoor ceremonies take place in the Rose Garden, with its 300-yearold lime tree, beneath which sits a wooden gazebo. The sweet fragrances of the surrounding plants along with the secluded setting make this a truly romantic spot. Receptions are hosted in a large wedding marque, positioned to make the most of the views. It can accommodate up to 150 day guests and 200 evening guests. With wooden floors, dividing walls and a private bridal changing room, it offers a blank canvas for you to decorate however you wish. PENSHURST PLACE AND GARDENS 01892 870 307 | Set in a 2,500-acre estate, the 14th-century Penshurst Place and its formal gardens are rich in natural splendour and breathtaking historical architecture. With sandstone walls and an impressive sweeping driveway, it has been described as the perfect combination of an inspiring castle and intimate country manor house. This grand stately home welcomes visitors through the wicket gate in the large wooden doorway that previously saw centuries of royalty pass through. Built in 1341 and the oldest room at Penshurst Place is the spectacular Baron’s Hall brimming with character and original Medieval architecture. It can host 200 guests for a seated ceremony, 136 for the wedding breakfast or 200 for a standing reception. The Sunderland Room adjoins the Minstrel Gallery and overlooks Baron’s Hall. Hung with historical paintings, it sits atop a spiral turret staircase. It can hold136 seated for the ceremony, 88 for the wedding breakfast and 140 for a standing reception. The Buttery, once the original bottle store for the house, boasts ancient brick walls, a large fireplace and tapestries. Ideal for intimate “I dos” it can hold 40 nearest and dearest. There’s also space here for 30 loved ones at the wedding breakfast and 50 at the standing reception. For al fresco ceremonies, the Inner Courtyard is a beautiful spot, surrounded by sandstone walls and scented roses. In addition, the newly licensed Nut Garden provides a more informal alternative to the Elizabethan rooms inside the house. In fact, so varied are the options here, we’d need most of the magazine to tell you about them! So, hop over to the website or get in touch with the wedding team to find out more. DID YOU KNOW? Nettlestead Place was included in the Domesday Book of 1086, then owned by William the Conqueror’s half-brother Odo, the Earl of Kent and Bishop of Bayeux in Northern France and second in power after the King of England. DID YOU KNOW? Filming at Penshurst Place in recent years has included Mary Queen of Scots, Wolf Hall, The Other Boleyn Girl, and The Boleyns – A Scandalous Family, plus the 1987 classic The Princess Bride. 24

A stunning venue with a real WOW factor, any couple would feel really special in this impressive setting steeped in history. Bilsington Priory is a beautiful space to marry in, with a dedicated team to look a er you. Unlike other venues, we do not charge corkage, so you are welcome to bring your own post ceremony drinks and table wines - we will chill and serve it to your guests free of charge. BILSINGTON PRIORY Please call us on 01233 720992 or email to make an appointment to view our stunning venue. Bilsington Priory, Priory Road, Bilsington, Nr Ashford Kent TN25 7AU

Call 01843 830150 or email, today to book your viewing 125 Canterbury Road, Westgate-on-Sea, Kent CT8 8NL | | A WEDDING AS UNIQUE AS YOU ARE... Your wedding is one of the most exciting and important days of your life – one that you will cherish and remember forever. If you are looking for a dream wedding venue in Kent, St Augustine’s is where dreams come true. At St Augustine’s we believe that every wedding is different. With a wide variety of rooms and spaces from which to choose, St Augustine’s is a truly unique venue and can offer: Weddings perfectly tailored to your needs whether an intimate gathering or 200+ guests • Huge flexibility with many function rooms to choose from for your big day • Elegant outdoor ceremonies in our beautiful gazebo • Deconsecrated chapel for religious, civil ceremonies, wedding breakfasts or reception • Spacious banqueting hall with capacity for 215 guests • Late licence until 1.00 am • Stylish bridal dressing room • Fabulous wedding cuisine, sumptuous banquets and deluxe buffets • A dedicated wedding co-ordinator • It’s your day and we promise it will be perfect, right down to the last tiny, exquisite detail. *Registrar fees are not included. FULL OR TWILIGHT WEDDING PACKAGES STARTING FROM AS LITTLE AS £3,250!

KNOWLE COUNTRY HOUSE 01474 822 262 | As you sweep along the venue’s driveway, it’s easy to be captivated by the charm and elegance of this fine Victorian mansion, set in one of the most beautiful and historically interesting spots in Kent. Having recently undergone extensive renovation work, the venue now boasts a gorgeous conservatory with a bar, and the lovely gazebo with surrounding patio used for outdoor ceremonies has been given a new lease of life. The wonderful location never fails to impress visitors. Set in 14 acres of gardens and orchards, with a wildlife area, the grounds burst with colour whatever the season and offer views of the distant River Thames. Located less than an hour’s drive from London with excellent rail links, The Knowle can accommodate weddings with up to 90 daytime guests for the ceremony and wedding breakfast, with space for an additional 80 in the evening. Receptions can be celebrated in the main restaurant with 90 loved ones or for more intimate gatherings, in the Octagonal Room (The Charles Dickens Room) for 10 nearest and dearest. Alternatively, the Garden Room can accommodate 40 guests and leads into the Victorian conservatory, an extended lounge area for everyone to enjoy. Irrespective of the numbers there’ll only be one wedding on any day, offering total privacy and sole use of the premises, with no hiring or hidden charges. Located in the centre of the House is the venue’s getting-ready room, perfect for all your preparations. A large room bathed in natural light, it features full-length mirrors, plush furnishings, Bluetooth stereo and a privacy screen. DID YOU KNOW? The Knowle Country House was built by Rev. Joseph Hindle, rector of Higham from 1829 to 1856, in the mid 19th century. Charles Dickens, an acquaintance of the Reverend, became a frequent visitor to The Knowle and it’s said he would have high tea in the study. HAVENFIELD HALL 01634 699 758 | Hidden away from public roads, Havenfield Hall sits at the end of a long drive that opens up to reveal the building’s grand scale. As you walk past the front of the house and around to the back where it opens onto the gardens, you’ll find the external games room, complete with full-sized snooker table and bar billiards table. Further on, there’s the Old School House, Cart Shed and bar, which hug a central courtyard, providing the perfect space for live bands, DJs and entertainment. The Old School House is your indoor ceremony option (80 guests), it features high ceilings and exposed timber beams, large windows and French doors, allowing natural light to flood in. For al fresco vows the Cart Shed and Courtyard (100 guests) are available, this open-faced oak-framed structure opens out onto the paved courtyard providing a lovely option that can be dressed according to your theme. Finally, for the ceremony, The Bandstand also offers a charming outdoor location for 120 loved ones. Welcome drinks can be served in the courtyard or on the lawned area, making use of the gardens and grounds. The three buildings that surround the central courtyard can all be utilised for the reception. DID YOU KNOW? Havenfield Hall’s interiors have been lovingly restored to bring them into keeping with the original building’s character and charm, with just a few modern touches added for comfort. Each of the seven bedrooms has its own individual decorative style. 27 HISTORICAL VENUES

Pre-register for all of our events at THE BRENTWOOD CENTRE, 2ND OCTOBER, 2022 MERCEDES-BENZ WORLD, 9TH OCTOBER, 2022 ASCOT RACECOURSE, 26TH FEBRUARY, 2023 WEMBLEY STADIUM, 3TH MARCH, 2023 X Sarah Here at County Wedding Magazines and Events HQ we’re looking forward to kickstarting our Spring wedding show season. From must-visit local fairs in some of the region’s best wedding venues, to our larger Signature Wedding Shows home to more than 100 exhibitors each, we can’t wait to welcome back our couples and help plan their wedding days. Here’s what to expect when attending one of our events... Whether you’re joyous that restrictions have passed, or are still a little hesitant, couples can rest assured our venues are continuing to maintain some of the government guidelines and measures to ensure everyone can feel comfortable and enjoy the day: • Attendees will need to pre-register to attend events • There will be allocated time slots for visitors • All venues will also have enhanced cleaning procedures, with hand washing and sanitising facilities still available • Spaces between exhibition booths will be maintained to ease congestion • Optional face masks • Anyone with symptoms must refrain from visiting 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, and attending our exhibitions is free! For more information on any of our exhibitions 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. Psst! Our pre-registered Signature Wedding Show visitors will have the chance to win a £250 gift voucher courtesy of A date for your diary... GREATEXPECTATIONS

WEDDING SHOWS AUTUMN 2022 ALL EVENTS 11AM - 3PM unless otherwise stated /CountyWeddingEvents @CountyWedEvent @countyweddingevents 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 draw competitions and take advantage of exclusive offers and discounts on the day. ESSEX SUN 23 OCT HOUCHINS WEDDING VENUE Houchin’s Lane, Coggeshall, Colchester, CO6 1RT SUN 25 SEPT PONTLANDS PARK West Hanningfield Road, Great Baddow, CM2 8HR SUN 30 OCT LAYER MARNEY TOWER Layer Marney, Colchester, CO5 9US SUN 16 OCT BRAXTED PARK Great Braxted, Witham, CM8 3EN 12PM-4PM

ALL EVENTS 11AM - 3PM unless otherwise stated As part of KD Events and Publishing 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 EAST ANGLIA SUN 23 OCT SMEETHAM HALL BARN Smeetham Hall, Sudbury, CO10 7EU BERKS, BUCKS & OXON SUN 25 SEPT RACKLEYS CHILTERN HILLS Marlow Road, Cadmore End, Bucks, HP14 3PP KENT SUN 6 NOV HYTHE IMPERIAL HOTEL & SPA Princes Parade, Hythe, CT21 6AE SUN 6 NOV PENSHURST PLACE Penshurst, TN11 8DG LONDON SUN 13 NOV MORDEN HALL Morden Hall Road, SM4 5JD SUSSEX SUN 16 OCT CASTLE GORING Arundel Road, Worthing, BN13 3UN SUN 30 OCT SELDEN BARNS Selden Lane, Patching Worthing, BN13 3UL 12PM-4PM

• Free entry • First 100 couples receive a free wedding journal keepsake • Goody bag for each couple • Up to 200 stands • Bridal fashion shows • 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 High Street, Berkshire, SL5 7JX SUNDAY 26 FEBRUARY 2023 | 11AM - 3.30PM ASCOT RACECOURSE Brooklands Drive, Weybridge, KT13 0SL SUNDAY 9 OCTOBER 2022 | 11AM - 3.30PM MERCEDES-BENZ WORLD Sponsored by Doddinghurst Road, Brentwood, CM15 9NN SUNDAY 2 OCTOBER 2022 | 11AM - 3.30PM THE BRENTWOOD CENTRE Sponsored by London, HA9 0WS SUNDAY 5 MARCH 2023 | 11AM - 4PM WEMBLEY STADIUM Sponsored by

Fantastically floral Leah and Lee opted for a rose gold, blush and grey palette for their wedding day, 23rd April, 2022 Images courtesy of Nicky’s Photography 32

Leah immediately knew that Lee was someone she wanted to be friends with when she met him while working in the restaurant at Brandshatch Place Hotel & Spa. The friendship grew through mutual support and in time blossomed into a relationship. The couple went to Nerja in Spain on holiday with best friends Riley and Ilona in September 2019 and while visiting The Balcon De Europa, which looks out onto the Med, Lee popped the question. “I had an inkling it might happen, but I was still overwhelmed when it did and I didn’t answer him for a really long time!” Leah remembers. The venue search was on when they returned to the UK and the pair visited several before they discovered Nettlestead Place. “We knew it was the right place for us, everything about it is stunning. When we saw its undercroft, we knew we’d be able to get the look and feel we wanted,” Leah explains. Here, the bride shares her treasured memories of the big day as well as the preparations… SETTING THE SCENE There are plenty of flower names in Leah’s family – on her mum’s side alone there’s Violet, Rose and Iris. Plus, her two flowergirls were also aptly named – one Violet and the other with the middle name Rose. So, in honour of these lovely ladies Leah’s bouquet featured roses and ivy, while the bridesmaids’ and flowergirls’ contained roses and eucalyptus. The idea was for little Violet to have her namesake blooms in her bouquet, but sadly there weren’t any to be found. The buttonholes too were all mindfully created: the best man and ushers had eucalyptus to match the bridesmaids’, and the dads wore gypsophila to complement the flowergirls. Meanwhile, Lee’s featured a rose, gypsophila and ivy to mirror Leah’s bouquet. Continuing the flower theme, Leah’s maiden name is Poppy, so they chose poppy seeds as their wedding favours, which were gifted in little hessian bags to suit their rustic theme. With the idea of featuring everything they loved without deviating from the rustic aesthetic, the place names were cut from wood in the Disney font; while the tables were all named after the couple’s favourite Marvel characters. The retro comic-book versions were printed on to parchment and framed before Leah’s mum calligraphed the names. The centrepieces were made up of gin and whisky bottles filled with faux flowers, mainly pink peonies and gypsophila. Fairylights were added for a touch of extra magic. Faux ivy was wrapped around the pillars in the undercroft and rose gold tea light holders were placed around their bases. The latter were also used to decorate the tables along with hessian runners. Since Leah was staying nearby, she didn’t need transport. However, the gents were all getting ready at home, so a Buick was booked for the ushers and Lee arrived in style in a Mustang, which his bride booked as a surprise. FOOD FOR THOUGHT “We had canapés, which tasted amazing,” Leah tells us. These were followed by a three-course wedding breakfast started off with goat’s cheese and beetroot parfait. The main course was braised beef, with chocolate mousse for dessert. The couple and their guests enjoyed tapas in the evening and they were also treated to a sweet table and doughnut wall. The three-tier big-day bake was simply iced and decorated with REAL WEDDING 33

Call: 07584 992647 or email: WWW.STAGPROMOTIONS.CO.UK The Wilderminds were absolutely fantastic! They created the most beautiful soundtrack to make our wedding day totally perfect. They played the most gorgeous acoustic set in the sunshine upon our arrival. Everyone commented at how beautiful it was being able to enjoy their drinks and listen to their set. As for the evening, they were on fire! The dance floor was never empty and they created the most electric atmosphere all night! We didn't want them to stop! I Would highly highly recommend them to anyone! Thank you so so much. Stag Promotions are the cutting edge in providing the best live entertainment across the UK, available for Wedding, Corporate and Party Events. All musicians are exclusively chosen through a detailed auditioning program, identifying the outstanding individuals that build our bands. Tom Jeavons Photographer “Introducing chefs Stephen Clark & Simon McNamara of Invicta Food Design who have an exciting new residency & Partnership with The Dreys!” The Dreys is a family run private business offering bespoke weddings and events, based in 80 acres of private woodland in Kent. 01622 236 550 | | T H E D R E Y S S Q U I R R E L W O O D , R U M S T E A D L A N E , S T O C K B U R Y S I T T I N G B O U R N E , K E N T, M E 9 7 R T PROFESSIONAL FIREWORK DISPLAYS DELIVERED AROUND THE UK AND WORLDWIDE We offer you the very best, fully insured displays at every level; working with venues across the country to bring spectacular displays. Bespoke and tailor made with the finest products, care and attention to detail with great value for money. Options from set budget packages to pyromusicals; there really is something for everyone. EVERY OCCASION WEDDINGS NEW YEAR BONF I RE N I GHT ENQUIRIES WELCOMED... T: 01732 822788 E: WWW.PHOENIXFIREWORKS.CO.UK PHO E N I X F I R EWOR K S LT D , WROTHAM H I L L ROAD , WROTHAM , S E V E NOAK S , TN15 7PX