Your Kent Wedding - September/October 2023 (Issue 110)

WIN! A Yorkshire break worth £1,000 on health and wellbeing TIME travellers Everything you wanted to know about wedding flowers but were afraid to ask! Kent's historical venues Wedding dresses to suit your vibe BLISS LUBA MUSHTUK ONCE AND FLORAL SEP/OCT 2023 £3.55 Boutique

Edw dS photography “I have never felt more beautiful in my life and Ed captured that perfectly. I cannot just highly recommend Ed as a photographer but sincerely think that anyone who doesn’t hire him to take their pictures is losing out. I would hire Ed 100 times over again.” -Rebecca & Julian Perfectly capturing your day in any light Click here to see the whole gallery As a documentary photographer who not only understands how to utilise the art of posing, and light-shaping tools to add a hint of drama to your images, I also provide you both the guidance and support throughout your wedding day. Visit my website for more information. +44 7590 017 483 • Six Hours • One Photographer • Online Gallery Perfect for a Twilight Wedding Photographic coverage starting from £750

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 67 HOT TOPIC Our experts offer stellar wedmin advice on personalising your big day 105 COMPETITION Win a romantic break in Yorkshire worth £1,000 CONTENTS SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2023 On the cover This issue’s cover is sponsored by Bradbourne House (, a luxury, exclusive-use venue located in the heart of the Kent countryside. It features real couple Lizzie and Jordan on their wedding day, taking a stroll around the grounds of this beautiful venue. The image was captured by Tom Cullen Photography ( 67 FEATURES 53 GOING TO THE CHAPEL Captured at one of Kent’s newest venues, Chapel House Estate, this shoot features rich tones and pampas pops 57 ONCE AND FLORAL Everything you wanted to know about wedding flowers but were afraid to ask 62 SEASIDE AND CITRUS We love the fresh lemon colour palette of this shoot. Paired with the location’s bracing sea air it enlivens the senses 77 WINTER WOODLAND FANTASY Embrace the spirit of nature and discover floral headpieces that make a statement 45 VENUES 19 SPOTLIGHT ON... Maidstone and Medway 25 TIME TRAVELLERS We round up some of the county’s most iconic historical wedding venues 3

REAL WEDDINGS 32 GOING THE DISTANCE Keen runners Kim and Paul celebrated their sustainable wedding day at Frasers, Egerton 39 A WORLD OF WONDER Marie and Aaron styled their wedding with a nod to all their favourite fictional realms 45 AN OCTOBER LOVE STORY Autumnal vibes were at the heart of Amelia and David’s wedding day at The Gardens, Yalding GROOMS 89 GROOMS’ NEWS The latest best buys and product launches 90 SKIN DEEP WarPaint For Men shares its make-up and skincare tips for grooms-to-be HONEYMOONS 101 MAGICAL MAURITIUS Explore this year-round honeymoon hotspot for a taste of the local cuisine, lush scenery and sustainable hotel choices FASHION & BEAUTY 71 BOUTIQUE BLISS We chatted to the county’s bridal boutique owners to find out how to dress according to your big-day’s vibe 81 FASHION FOCUS The latest bridal fashion news, buys and launches 82 ALL DRESSED UP The new season bridal edit of dreamy dresses features delicate details, fairytale-inspired florals and flowing fabrics 93 BEAUTY Q&A Our local professionals solve your problems 94 BEAUTY BUZZ Get the look with the latest must-haves 96 BEST FACE FORWARD We investigate the much-discussed bridal musthave treatment, HydraFacial 98 LADY OF THE DANCE Strictly’s Luba Mushtuk talks health, wellbeing and the all-important first dance 77 39 98 57 @lubamushtuk 62 71 © Disney Fairy Tale Weddings 4

We had the most amazing weekend at Yew Tree Farm for my best friend’s hen-do. The house is unbelievable, so big and has everything you could need! The garden was the highlight for us, made even better by the best weather we could have asked for. Michelle is such a lovely host, really accomodating and even popped in to say hello to the bride. I would recommend to anyone and would love to come back one day! To book our holiday let for an exceptional hen party experience, please drop us an email on or contact owner Michelle on 07887 712185 CHARING HEATH ROAD CHARING KENT TN27 0AU UNFORGETTABLE HEN PARTY EXPERIENCES AWAIT AT OUR EXQUISITE HOLIDAY LET We are thrilled to announce the availability of our stunning holiday let tailored specifically for extraordinary hen parties. Our luxurious holiday let has been meticulously designed to cater to the unique needs of hen parties, offering a blend of comfort, sophistication, and ample space for memorable festivities. Nestled in a picturesque location, our property provides a perfect backdrop for an phenomenal hen party experience. Spacious Accommodation: Sleeping up to 16 people, living areas, and modern amenities to ensure a comfortable stay for all guests. Entertainment Galore: The property is equipped with a range of entertainment options, including a large dining area with integral bar, a living area with comforting open fire. Stylish Outdoor Spaces: Stunning garden, complete with a charming patio area, fire pit seating area, outside bar and a rejuvenating hot tub. Central Location: Situated in the beautiful Kent countryside, conveniently located near popular destinations such as Canterbury, Whitstable and Ashford which all boast nightlife venues, restaurants, and attractions. At Yew Tree Farm, we understand that each hen party is unique. Therefore, we are happy to arrange additional services that allow our guests to tailor their experience according to their preferences. We can organise a range of activities to make your celebration truly extraordinary, like caterers, cocktail making and crafts.

ONE OF THE UK’S MOST EXTRAORDINARY AND SPECTACULAR WEDDING VENUES | 01303 234111 Nr. Ashford, Kent, CT21 4PD A magical place to dine and dance the night away, our stunning, newly appointed glass Orangery and Pergola.

105 WIN! A romantic break in Yorkshire worth £1,000 39 FLOWERGIRL FUN Marie and Aaron’s little daughter made the cutest flowergirl at their wedding. Here she is, off duty with daddy, enjoying some fun at Marleybrook House’s fairground. Yes, I successfully survived the summer – hurrah! To be fair, I don’t know if we can even describe the last few months as summer, but never mind, it suited me down to the ground! Now, here we are in autumn already. This season is growing enormously in popularity for weddings and is one of my favourites as I love to see couples getting super-creative with their themes and colour palettes. Think rich jewel tones, which are stunning on their own or used with pastels as an accent colour. Rust is huge at the moment. Oh-so modern, it comes into its own during the autumn months. More so than any other season, autumn immediately conjures up associated colours typified by nature at this time of year, such as the reds and oranges of turning leaves. It’s also ideal timing if you fancy something a bit quirky. With Halloween on the horizon, add plenty of pumpkins to your styling. What about carving your own romantic scenes into them to represent your unique love story and using as illuminated centrepieces? Gothic and enchanted forest vibes also work particularly well at this time of year. What’s more, the much-loved rustic feel really comes into it’s own when given a harvest-time twist. September and October are also awash with wedding fairs, so as well as being a lush time to get married, it’s the best time to flesh out your vision with supplier soul mates! Our sister brand, County Wedding Events, is hosting an array of wedding shows across the South East this autumn, including at Bradbourne House and Penshurst Place. Head over to to register. This issue we’ve got three stunning styled shoots for you offering a whole heap of wedspiration. Meanwhile, the county’s wedding florists and bridal boutiques, give us the benefit of their wisdom to aid you in your quest to put together your dream day. So, as ever, enjoy and keeeep planning! Kelly x ISSN 1746-9384 Your Kent Wedding is solely owned, published and designed by KD Events & Publishing 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. Your Kent Wedding is published six times a year. Kelly Andrews, editor MEDIA PUBLISHING VENTS UBLISHING EVENTS & PUBLISHING cwe COUNTY WEDDING EVENTS mrs_c_waltersphotography 62 BY THE SEASIDE Who needs a destination wedding, when the Kentish coast has everything you need? Don’t miss this issue’s glorious lemon-themed shoot captured at West Bay House, Westgate-on-Sea. 53 A CLASS ACT Pampas grass blooms in September and with decent weather its fluffy plumes can look great for months, making the perfect addition to your autumn wedding venue styling. ADVERTISING Account Manager Julia Owen | 01376 538 495 @CountyWeddingMagazines @CountyWeddings @countyweddingmagazines Visit us online at and DESIGN 01376 535 616 ACCOUNTS 01376 535 616 MANAGING DIRECTOR Sarah Ellis | 01376 535 602 EDITORIAL Deputy Managing Editor Kelly Andrews | 01376 535 611 Autumnal creations EDITOR’S LETTER 7 One award winning venue offering three wedding spaces in rural Kent. Weddings at Hever Castle EXCLUSIVE | LUXURIOUS | AWARD WINNING E: | T: 01732 861800

NEWS Nearlywed Catch up on the latest from around the county WINNING WAYS Kent-based Baldwins Travel has been voted Travel Agent of The Year – London and South East England (Small Agency) 2023 at this year’s Agent Achievement Awards. The event was held at the prestigious Westminster Park Plaza Hotel in London, where the travel industry comes together to celebrate the very best travel agents in the country. On winning this award Nick Marks, managing director, says, “We’re absolutely delighted to win this coveted prize, which is due to the hard work and dedication of all the team at Baldwins Travel. We pride ourselves on giving the very best service to all our clients and we cannot thank everyone who voted for us enough. This award means the world to the team.” So, if you’re keen to place your honeymoon plans in the safest of hands, find out more at EDITOR LOVES Kakawa Artisan Chocolate is the home of handcrafted, small-batch chocolates in the heart of the Kent countryside. Its dedicated chocolatiers create hundreds of tasty creations including bestsellers The Original (£3.95), an irresistible symphony of creamy milk and velvety white chocolate; Traditional Chocolate Bars (from £3.95), embodying the heart and soul of Kakawa and a timeless homage to classic chocolate indulgence; and Topped Chocolate Bars (from £5.95), each one a work of art, expertly adorned in carefully chosen toppings such as biscuits, fudge and meringue. What’s more, this local brand’s commitment to the planet is just as deep as its love for chocolate. By sourcing sustainable cocoa and using eco-friendly packaging, its making indulgence a guilt-free experience! Kakawa isn’t just about making chocolate, it’s about creating edible works of art, which is why the bars make for wonderful wedding favours. Choose your favourites and the team will provide personalised labelling for your big day. In the past they’ve even used wax stamps supplied by their happy couples to stamp personalised chocolate plaques. If you’d rather take a hands-on approach though, you’re welcome to go along and make your own favours for an extra special personal touch. With more than 200 flavours to choose from, you can be as creative as you like in terms of finding the perfect fit for your vibe and theme. Their creativity knows no bounds, and neither does your chocolate adventure. It doesn’t end there as the team at Kakawa are happy to welcome you and your hens to their HQ and fully-licensed premises. This means that between chocolate-making experiences you can all have a drink and chill while your treats set. Find out more at DATES FOR THE DIARY Get your fill of planning and wedspiration at a variety of wedding fairs happening across the county this season. Sunday 17th September, 2023 10.30am-2.30pm The Kent Wedding Wedding Fair, Rochester Corn Exchange Sunday 17th September, 2023 11am-3pm Lympne Castle Wedding Show Saturday 30th September – Sunday 1st October, 2023 | 10am-4pm Bluewater Wedding Fayre Sunday 1st October, 2023 10.30am-2.30pm The Kent Wedding Fair, Delta Hotels by Marriott Tudor Park Country Club Sunday 8th October, 2023 | 11am-4pm Signature Wedding Show at Wembley Stadium Saturday 14th October – Sunday 15th October, 2023 The National Wedding Show Sunday 15th October, 2023 | 11am-3pm Bradbourne House Wedding Showcase Sunday 15th October, 2023 | 11am-3pm Hythe Imperial Hotel Wedding Fair Sunday 15th October, 2023 | 10.30am-2.30pm The Kent Wedding Fair, Holiday Inn London Bexley LOCAL NEWS 9

WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS! Less than a year after opening its doors, Kent wedding and events venue Chapel House Estate has been named Hospitality and Events Start Up of the Year at the South East finals of the StartUp Awards 2023. Located in Minster, this 732-year-old chapel, surrounded by 35 acres, opened as a luxury wedding and events venue in July 2022. Nestled amongst romantic gardens and orchards, it’s fast become a popular destination for couples to wed, and this award gives it the recognition it deserves for its successful first year in business. Built from the ground up by owner Darren Ellis, Chapel House Estate has everything you need for your perfect wedding day, from the lovingly converted old malt granary where you can hold your ceremony, to the sympathetically restored 13th-century chapel, which now boasts luxurious accommodation with five bedrooms. The on-site No 9 Restaurant with a changing locally-sourced menu provides catering for weddings and events, and there’s even nine hideaway lodges, enabling up to 34 people to stay at the estate. “I’m so proud of everything my team and I have achieved in such a short space of time,” says Darren Ellis, owner of Chapel House Estate. “The award goes to everyone involved in the project from contractors to front and back of house staff. “I feel very proud to open such a beautiful venue and to become a custodian of such a charming, precious and ancient Grade II listed flint and stone-built building. We can’t wait to welcome you to our new award-winning venue in Thanet, Kent!” Learn more at OH-SO CHIC Cave Hotel and Golf Resort in Faversham has announced the completion of its marquee wedding venue’s refurbishment. With an eye for style and a commitment to creating unique experiences, the standard marquee has been transformed into a breathtaking space that blends style with a touch of whimsy. The centrepiece of the refurbishment is the addition of the wooden hit and miss interior, complemented by a luxurious marble backdrop. To enhance the ambience further, blue uplighters have been installed to accentuate the marquee’s interior walls, casting an inviting glow upon the surroundings. Meanwhile, the living walls bring a touch of greenery, creating a charming and immersive environment. Further highlights include the stylish restroom facilities within the marquee, ensuring comfort and convenience for you and your guests; and the new selfie area adorned with elegant gold mirrors and blue uplighters. Additionally, there’s a private outside area which features rattan corner seating, ideal for a spot of mingling and relaxation. For the littlest guests you could even set up tipis, garden games or a bouncy castle ensuring they’re equally as entertained as the grown ups. To bring an extra touch of excitement and flavour to events here, the Roaming Cowgirl food truck offers the venue’s famed Korean cowgirl wings, irresistible boneless bits, and comforting mac and cheese, all served from this charming vehicle complete with your very own private chef. Discover more at A NEW CHAPTER Self-made serial entrepreneur Dr Ann Kaplan Mulholland, whose net worth is more than £500 million is one of the stars of The Real Housewives of Toronto and is a household name in her native Canada. She and hubby Dr Stephen Mulholland, a world-renowned plastic surgeon, threw caution to the wind and decided to buy a bolthole in Britain after their youngest of eight children flew the nest. The couple purchased the historical, romantic and regal Grade I listed Lympne Castle in Kent overlooking Romney Marsh and the English Channel. “I was drawn to the beauty of its architecture; the magic of visiting, let alone owning, an actual castle; and the beautiful English countryside. Visiting Lympne Castle was like fulfilling a dream,” Ann says. As well as providing a glorious home for the Kaplan Mulholland family, the Castle will also continue in its long-established use as a wedding venue. In fact, Ann raced to the rescue of dozens of couples who’d been told by the previous owners that their forthcoming nuptials at the castle had been cancelled due to the sale. But not only did Ann agree to honour those dates, she has given the nearlyweds a 20 per cent discount on their big day! Ann says, “What couple wouldn’t want to be married in a castle? Just over an hour from London by car, Lympne Castle offers a true fantasy experience.” Plans are already afoot to film a docu-reality series about Lympne Castle and the couple’s forthcoming adventures. The duo plan to invest £20million undertaking a grand renovation of the Castle, which dates back to the 1080s when Saint Thomas Becket was a resident. Ann’s ultimate vision is to transform the Castle into a one-of-a-kind Medieval tourist destination, conference and events venue. She explains, “Imagine as a guest being transported back in time to experience visiting the Castle centuries ago, with fun, music and atmosphere, knights of the realm greeting you, plus jesters, stewards and ladies dressed in clothing of the period.” Ann will hire local people and suppliers, and is looking forward to supporting the local community, giving the Castle a new lease of life, while preserving it for generations to come. You can stay up to date at Scan to view video 10

t.JC packages start from jus 90 per perso t.JC packages start from jus 90 per perso £79 per person FOLKESTONE’S CHARMING WEDDING VENUE Civil Ceremonies Wedding Breakfasts Great location for photos opposite The Leas and next to Clifton Gardens

Gorgeous discounts and giveaways up for grabs CLAIM YOUR FREE SACRED LIP BALM WORTH £10 Sacred is a new award-winning, Sandgate-based, 100% natural, vegan and cruelty-free beauty brand, and the latest contributor to the circular beauty movement. It was founded in 2020 by Natalie Hughes from Kent thanks to a desire to make the naturally effective products she was struggling to find on the high street, in a way that’s kind to skin as well as good for the planet. The brand’s ethos is about offering people an opportunity to experience slow, mindful beauty, and in just two years, its progressive wellness products have made it into the hands of celebrity and bridal make-up artists. Two hero products have even won the Beauty Shortlist Awards in 2022 – the elemental Glow Face Oil, and Spring Revival Hydrating Body Balm. Natalie is now on a mission to push circular beauty into the mainstream and change the narrative around anti-ageing products. We’ve proudly partnered with this caring local beauty brand to offer readers of Your Kent Wedding the gift of a free Sacred Lip Balm worth £10 when you spend more than £40 on An ultra-conditioning matt lip balm, it’s made with luxurious and deeply nourishing raspberry and pomegranate seed oils to soothe, soften and protect your lips leaving them prepped and kissable for your big day. To claim, simply add ‘Your Kent Wedding’ to the notes section at the checkout. Offer valid until 31st October, 2023. Freebies& OFFERS WIN PERSONALISED BRACELETS Are you dreaming of making your special day even more memorable for your beloved bridesmaids? Look no further! We have an exciting opportunity for you to win personalised bracelets for each of your bridesmaids, courtesy of Merci Maman. Merci Maman understand the importance of thoughtful and meaningful gifts, especially when it comes to your bridesmaids. Its handcrafted Personalised Pastille Chain Bracelet is a bestseller, a timeless and beloved piece testament to the elegance and charm that the brand’s jewellery carries. Crafted with love and attention to detail, these bracelets will serve as treasured keepsakes for your bridesmaids, a symbol of your lasting friendship and gratitude. Visit County Wedding Magazines has teamed up with Merci Maman to give readers the chance to win two personalised pastille chain bracelets worth £237. For your chance to win enter via our website, FIT FOR A QUEEN Inspired by organic shapes and capturing fluid elements in motion, Lucy Quartermaine creates stunning jewellery from remarkable designs that will transform your bridal style. Originally produced to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, the Royal Pearl collection complements 925 silver with freshwater pearls for a timeless design perfect for a wedding day. Visit County Wedding Magazines has teamed up with Lucy Quartermaine to give readers the chance to win a threepiece set of Royal Pearl pieces worth £237. For your chance to win enter via our website, FREEBIES & OFFERS 13

WEDDING SHOWS AUTUMN 2023 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. 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 our website WORK WITH US KENT SUN 24 SEP | RACKLEY’S CHILTERN HILLS Marlow Road, Cadmore End, Bucks, HP14 3PP SUN 12 NOV | MORDEN HALL Morden Hall Road, SM4 5JD SUN 12 NOV | PENSHURST PLACE Penshurst, TN11 8DG SUN 15 OCT | BRADBOURNE HOUSE New Road, East Malling, ME19 6DZ BERKS, BUCKS & OXON LONDON

ESSEX SUSSEX SUN 8 OCT | LAYER MARNEY TOWER Layer Marney, Colchester, CO5 9US SUN 29 OCT | HOUCHINS WEDDING VENUE Houchin’s Lane, Coggeshall, Colchester, CO6 1RT SUN 1 OCT | MULBERRY HOUSE Chelmsford Road, High Ongar, CM5 9NL SUN 15 OCT | BRAXTED PARK Great Braxted, Witham, CM8 3EN SUN 15 OCT | THAT AMAZING PLACE Hubbards Hall Farm, Harlow, CM17 0NH SUN 22 OCT | SELDEN BARNS Selden Lane, Patching, Worthing, BN13 3UL EAST MIDLANDS SUN 15 OCT | RUSHTON HALL Desborough Road, Rushton, Kettering, NN14 1RR SUN 1 OCT | NUTFIELD PRIORY Nutfield Road, Nutfield, Redbridge, RH1 4EL SURREY 12PM-4PM 12PM-4PM

Follow us on /CountyWeddingEvents @CountyWedEvent @countyweddingevents IN ASSOCIATION WITH HOSTED AT One of the largest wedding shows to be held in the South of England. A huge number of wedding specialists on hand to inspire and advise on how to bring your wedding dreams to life. PLUS! Special offers on the day • The chance to win a luxury honeymoon • Entertainment • Refreshments • and more... For your FREE tickets and the chance to win a £250 voucher courtesy of pre-register at: Sunday 29th October 2023 11am to 3.30pm FREE ENTRY Brooklands Drive, Weybridge, Surrey KT13 0SL

Pre-register for all of our events at ASCOT RACECOURSE, 1ST OCTOBER, 2023 MERCEDES-BENZ WORLD, 29TH OCTOBER, 2023 X Sarah Here at County Wedding Magazines and Events HQ we’re looking forward to kickstarting our Autumn 2023 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. 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... GREAT EXPECTATIONS | | 01732 897436 Bradbourne House, New Road, East Malling, Kent, ME19 6DZ Breathtaking scenery, exceptional service and fine, locally sourced menus An idyllic setting for your Wedding Day, located in the heart of the Kent countryside. Photography: Tom Cullen

BRADBOURNE HOUSE 01732 897 436 | Beautiful Bradbourne House in an exclusive-use, Queen Anne Grade I listed country house, located in the heart of Kent. The house as it stands today was built between 1712 and 1715 and served as the Twisden family home right up until 1937, when it was auctioned and bought by the East Malling Trust. The House boasts 20 acres of picturesque parklands, including ancient trees, tranquil lake and the secret garden fruit orchard. From the moment you drive through the iron gates, you’ll find yourself surrounded by pristine stripey lawns, and a plethora of wildlife. The venue offers two licensed indoor ceremony areas: The Drawing Room for intimate ceremonies with up to 50 guests and The Great Hall for “I dos” witnessed by up to 100. These two beautiful spaces can also play host to your reception. The Great Hall allows for large numbers to come together and celebrate, from a decadent wedding breakfast for 100, to that all-important evening do accompanied by 200 loved ones. The bay windows of the Drawing Room are practically made for a wedding cake to sit in and the ceiling is particularly ornate covered in gold detailing. Here you can comfortably host up to 100 standing or 40 for a wedding breakfast. Additionally, The Breakfast Room offers a different feel within the house. The dark oak interiors adorned in portraits mean this is often referred to as a gentleman’s room. Complete with a grand piano, it’s the perfect setting for intimate meals seating 40 or relaxing with tea and cake. What’s more, there are two outdoor spaces in which you can exchange your vows, each licensed to hold up to 100 loved ones. These are The Great Hall Steps at the front of the house, and the Hatton Fruit Garden. The steps offer the grandest of entrances for the venue’s brides. As you ascend the marble steps to complete your journey down the aisle, the house itself provides an impressive backdrop. 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 idyllic secret garden spot where you can say, “I do.” Bradbourne House offers a complementary menu tasting for the two of you with its executive chef, and a toastmaster is included in the hire to aid the seamless flow of your day. MAIDSTONE & MEDWAY Spotlight on... Tie the knot in a local hotspot 19 LOCAL VENUES

THE HISTORIC DOCKYARD CHATHAM 01634 823 846 | It’s all hands on deck to ensure you have the perfect wedding day at The Historic Dockyard Chatham! Where else can you say your wedding vows under sails that have cruised the world’s oceans and witnessed timeless stories of love and loyalty; or celebrate in rooms where illustrious heroes have rejoiced in their greatest victories? Set among 400 years of maritime history, this venue provides an iconic backdrop to your day. Commissioner’s House, Britain’s oldest naval building, is an elegant Georgian-style historical home with a choice of two recently-decorated rooms to suit all themes and guest numbers: the Sunne Room and the Ballroom, both of which can host 70 seated. Complete with your own balcony overlooking the secret walled garden, there’s even a getting- ready room here, sure to aid you in creating special memories with your bride tribe on the morning of. Meanwhile, Commissioner’s Garden provides the perfect setting for drinks receptions and photographs. It’s yours for the day and offers guests the chance to play garden games on the lawn. You can also tie the knot on the Patio as 80 loved ones look on. Receptions at the Commissioner’s House and Gardens can accommodate 120 for a sit-down meal and 200 for the evening reception. If you’re looking for a venue with a difference, why not say your vows aboard the magnificent sloop, HMS Gannet? Choose from the Commander’s Cabin (up to 40 guests), the Quarterdeck or the main deck (up to 70). From saying “I do” to enjoying canapés and drinks on the deck, it’s a special space for all to enjoy, before heading off to Commissioner’s House to celebrate for the rest of your day. NETTLESTEAD PLACE 01622 328 328 | As you arrive at Nettlestead Place via the 14th-century gatehouse, the Grade I listed manor comes into view. Still a private family home, it has over the centuries staged many a lavish event and celebration. With more than 10 acres of award-winning gardens, the grounds feature a pictureperfect sunken pond and breathtaking, far-reaching views across the Medway. Stone walls, archways, secret gardens, a children’s maze and winding pathways offer an array of incredible photo opportunities for your couple shot backdrops. Ceremonies are held in the manor’s stunning 13th-century undercroft, characterised by three Medieval pillars and vaulted ceiling. It’s an impressive and unique location befitting such an important occasion. Guests are also free to wander and explore. Outdoor ceremonies take place in the beautiful Rose Garden, with its 300-year-old lime tree. Beneath one of its boughs is a wooden gazebo, where you’ll say “I do.” The sweet fragrances of the surrounding flora combined with the secluded setting make this a truly romantic setting. Receptions are hosted in the striking large wedding marquee, which is positioned to make the most of the far-reaching views. It can accommodate up to 150 day guests, and 200 evening guests. It boasts wooden floors, dividing walls, and a private bridal changing room, along with the ideal blank canvas to decorate as you wish. You’ll be offered a free tasting menu experience and wine tasting experience when you book your wedding day here. 20

         01622 328 328 Nettlestead, Maidstone, Kent. ME18 5HA  Some 2024 dates still available Booking now for 2025 & 2026 Please Enquire 01227 832116 The Night Yard, Highland Court Farm, Bridge, CT4 5HW A truly relaxed Kentish wedding venue Scan to find out more Nestled amongst woodland and surrounded by fruit orchards, The Night Yard is exclusively yours and offers everything you need for a relaxed day and night. Just 10 minutes from the historical City of Canterbury.

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 after 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 weddings@ to make an appointment to view our stunning venue. Bilsington Priory, Priory Road, Bilsington, Nr Ashford Kent TN25 7AU

OAD ST WEDDINGS 01795 720 193 | Oad St is a family-owned and run wedding venue. Working to meet customer needs for the past 30 years, it prides itself on the quality and warmth of its service, creating unforgettable memories for its couples to cherish. Located in the beautiful countryside of Borden, with convenient links to the M2, M20 and Thanet, it’s easy to reach while still feeling pleasantly secluded. Offering a modern twist on a countryside venue, the modern elegance of Oad St is evident in its high-end interiors. The team is understandably very proud of the stunning dining hall and elegant luxury bar, as well as the excellent food and service. The venue doesn’t hold a ceremony licence as yet, but does welcome celebrant-led nuptials. The indoor ceremony hall can seat a maximum of 88 nearest and dearest with the option of overflow seating slightly further back in the bar area to increase the number to 108. The space provides simple tranquillity with modern details, including greenery and flowers draped from the vaulted ceiling, large floor-to-ceiling windows and furniture options to complement these stunning features. The outside ceremony space will be able to accommodate 108 loved ones. As a new venue the team is working hard to ensure every area is of the highest quality. There are plans afoot to redesign and renovate this space with landscaping and unique features, to ensure the most beautiful, private setting for your “I dos.” A memorable, fun and relaxed drinks reception awaits the arrival of your loved ones either in the bar or in the gardens with the quirky cocktail bar. Then, receptions for 108 diners are hosted in the Dining Hall, the perfect blend of luxury elegance and contemporary beauty, allowing you the flexibility to add personal touches if you wish. If you prefer to take it easy though, it is equally beautiful without! As the evening unfolds, lights dim to create a romantic starlit ambience, and the open-plan layout means that no matter where you and your 250 guests are, everyone can enjoy the night together. Once you’ve secured your date, you’ll be allocated a dedicated wedding coordinator, and offered a wine-tasting night. The venue’s catering partner also offers food tastings at their kitchen space, all at no extra cost. THE GARDENS 01622 814 650 | The Gardens is a quintessentially English countryside venue with 12 acres of gardens. Located in the quaint village of Yalding, the venue is a horticultural masterpiece divided into 16 landscaped gardens. Each one celebrates a different period or style in gardening providing virtually endless whimsical and romantic photo opportunities. You have a choice here of three ceremony spaces. The Gazebo set among the gardens can seat 130, and surrounded by nature it offers beathtaking views at every turn. The Ceremony Tipi can seat 100. New for 2023 it’s attached to the barn and is the perfect all-weather, yearround option for intimate and informal “I dos.” The Barn is ideal for the winter when 130 loved ones can gather to witness your vows. It offers a gorgeous location with bifold doors spanning the width of the room providing views of the gardens beyond. Once you’re wed, you can celebrate in style in The Tipis with 130 loved ones for a sit-down meal and later 300 for a buffet. Romantic fairylights cascade from the wooden beams, while the firepits exude subtle light and warmth, creating a serene ambience. In the summer months, the sides of the tipis can be opened allowing you to enjoy views of the grounds. The Barn is ideal for the evening bash, accommodating 240 standing guests. Here, you can enjoy a large dancefloor, DJ booth and a wellstocked bar. The Gardens hosts a number of VIP events throughout the year to inspire couples who’ve booked their wedding here. These provide an opportunity for you to meet the team and recommended suppliers, taste the culinary delights provided by the venue’s in-house chefs and gather ideas for your big day. Flowers by Floral Explosion Flowers by Floral Explosion 23 LOCAL VENUES

Located within an amazing setting in the heart of the Kent countryside, The Lost Village of Dode is available for exclusive intimate and private smaller weddings & blessings…the perfect wedding venue. Secluded, Silent, Sacred Get in touch today to book in your personal viewing. 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!

Time travellers We round up some of the county’s iconic historical wedding venues PORT LYMPNE HOTEL & RESERVE 01303 234 111 | A magical and unique setting steeped in history, four-star Grade II listed mansion Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve is Kent’s largest wildlife reserve and award-winning wedding venue, set within 600 acres of magnificent private parkland and home to 900 wild endangered animals. Its idyllic setting provides sensational views for a picture-perfect wedding album, and a variety of beautiful locations within the estate to utilise on the big day. Set among 14-acres of perfectly manicured gardens and adorned with white rambling roses, the garden Pergola seats 110 guests and is an enchanting place to say ‘I do’ outside. Additionally, the second outdoor ceremony option is the Moroccan Courtyard located in Port Lympne Hotel. Offering a more intimate wedding for yourself and 25 guests, it boasts original 1920s details from when it was first designed by Phillip Sassoon and it has also been decorated with items all the way from Marrakesh. For al fresco entertaining post-vows, nestled amongst the gardens of the Hotel, The Iceberg Terrace can comfortably seat 100 guests and has views of the Lime Tree Avenue and the Trojan Steps. Inside, for the ceremony, the mansion boasts delightful muralpainted rooms by famous English artists such as Rex Whistler, Spencer Roberts and Martin Jordan. The stunning Spencer Roberts room is hand-painted and showcases a mural of animals, some of which are located right at Port Lympne; it seats 50 for the ceremony, and 30 for the wedding breakfast. The Long room can be used for wedding ceremonies of up to 100 guests (wedding breakfasts, 50) and has wonderful views over the Southern Terrace and 600-acre reserve. The venue’s stunning new glass orangery and terrace are a creative salute to the theatrical entertainment style of the Gatsby era. Truly private and available for exclusive use only for 120 guests for seated dinner/wedding breakfast, its inclusive of a dancefloor, cloakroom and luxury washrooms, fully incorporated kitchen and has the option to add an additional marque or food station on the adjoining lawn. When you’re tying the knot here, you are having something inspiring and totally different. Being located within a wild animal reserve even means that private guided safaris can be arranged for couples and their guests. What’s more, with unique overnight accommodation available from star gazing to luxury lodges set within animal enclosures, there’s ample choice for staying guests. 25 HISTORICAL VENUES

PENSHURST PLACE 01892 870 307 | Set in an estate of 2,500 acres, the 14th-century house and formal gardens are steeped in natural splendour and historical architecture. With towers and crenelated ancient walls interspersed with arched leaded windows, this grand stately home welcomes visitors through the wicket gate in the large wooden doorway that previously saw centuries of royalty passing through it. You’re truly spoilt for choice when it comes to wedding spaces here and most are so flexible they can be used for the “I dos” and reception. The Baron’s Hall (200 ceremony, 136 dining and 200 reception guests), built in 1341 is the venue’s oldest room, brimming with character and original Medieval architecture. The Sunderland Room (136 ceremony, 88 dining, 140 reception guests) adjoins the minstrel gallery overlooking the Baron’s Hall, and with part-panelled, part-sandstone walls hung with historical paintings, it sits atop a spiral turret staircase and offers a wonderful view across the parklands. Located adjacent to the Baron’s Hall, The Buttery (40 ceremony, 30 dining and 50 reception guests) with ancient brick walls, a large fireplace and tapestries, was the original bottle store for the house and is ideal for smaller ceremonies or use as a further reception area. The Garden Room (93 ceremony, 74 dining, and 100 for dancing) a few steps from the main house offers a light and spacious interior with wheelchair access. For winter weddings only, there’s also a beautifully draped marquee, which can be arranged in either the Inner Courtyard or for more guests, on the South Lawn at an additional fee. If you prefer to celebrate al fresco, the Inner Courtyard (120 ceremony and 200 standing reception guests) alongside the Baron’s Hall where you can say your vows beneath the King’s Tower, is surrounded by sandstone walls and scented roses. The Nut Garden (136 ceremony guests) located amongst 11 acres of formal gardens is an ethereal space featuring an oak pergola, which is the summertime is covered in rambling roses, climbing wisteria and ivy. Finally, if you don’t require a legal ceremony and decide to opt for a blessing, you’ll definitely want to look at Lancup Well (200 ceremony guests) as the perfect spot. Here, you can enjoy a blessing amongst fine topiary as the sun dapples the surface of the lake. THE LOST VILLAGE OF DODE 01622 734 205 | A beautiful Norman church looking almost exactly as it did 900 years ago, its floors are covered with straw, while candles and torches cast light on the scene. The interior of this structure would have witnessed similar ceremonies right from the time it was built in around 1100, and the atmosphere and restful silence within is palpable. Standing on an ancient, prehistoric mound ovelooking the valley of Dode, this simple, two cell Norman church is surrounded by meadows and woodland, which feature a village pond and stunning stone circle. Its walls are comprised of local flint with its roof of Kentish peg tiles partly cloaked in a mantle of ivy, truly evoking the atmosphere of times long since passed. Tucked away below the church are two retreat cottages constructed in English oak, in the 16th-century style. Civil ceremonies take place in the ancient church building itself, accommodating up to 40 guests along with the the two of you. Blessings are also permitted either inside the building or among the grounds, particularly in the stone circle. Receptions also take place inside the church, and are laid out in a Medieval banqueting-style format with various options for catering, including a hog roast banquet, grazing-style buffet or high tea. Seating 42 guests, it also boasts options for music and dancing in the evening until 10pm. The minstrels gallery in particular offers dramatic theatre with space for musicians and photographers alike. The venue is available April to October, and December. 26

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 after is waiting… B an New We din Package an muc mor ... 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

Get in touch today ALL HANDS ON DECK for your perfect wedding | 01634 823 846

UPNOR CASTLE 01634 718 742 | Set in the picturesque riverside village of Upnor, Upnor Castle is a rare example of an Elizabethan artillery fort. Paired with rolling hills, architectural brilliance and natural beauty, your big day here will be captured against a backdrop of history at one of England’s truly timeless places. The Castle is available for weddings from May to September, and is offered for ceremonies only, plus drinks in the grounds. It is often booked in combination with the Corn Exchange in historical Rochester, which provides an equally grand backdrop for wedding receptions and evening celebrations. Wander back in time as you make your way down the enchanting cobbled high street to the grand entrance gates, where you’ll pass through the dramatic, studded oak doors of the gatehouse, finding the grassed inner courtyard beyond. The venue boasts a river view and glorious gardens too. Climb the wooden stairs to the upper floor, where you’ll find Upnor Castle’s historical wedding room, which was once a store for munitions. Now, it boasts novel powder-barrel seating, echoing the castle’s past. Here, there’s room for 80 nearest and dearest seated, with a further 20 standing. After the ceremony, you’ll be able to enjoy an alfresco drinks reception in the Castle’s gorgeous grounds, where you can sip on champagne and hold court with your guests. With panoramic views of the river, this timeless and historical venue, also provides the picture-perfect backdrop for wedding photos to be treasured. HEVER CASTLE 01732 861 800 | Hever Castle is a gem in the heart of the Garden of England. The double-moated Castle displays a glorious creeping Boston Ivy, which turns a rich, deep red during late Autumn, making for iconic photographs in front of this beautiful building steeped in British history. Meanwhile, the Medieval gatehouse still retains a working drawbridge and portcullis, offering a further impressive spot for those all-important photographs. The award-winning Italian Gardens are a real highlight and showcase original statues from Rome, found alongside the stunning Loggia and Trevi-inspired fountain, overlooking the 38-acre boating lake. The impressive arched columns within the gardens, set off against the perfectly planted borders bring a true taste of Italy into the heart of the Kentish countryside. There are three areas available for ceremonies here. The Castle’s Inner Hall can accommodate 60 loved ones for the vows. With ornate panelled walls, antiques and open log fire it’s a wonderful spot for winter weddings in particular. The Tudor Suite Sitting Room within the Astor Wing can also host 60. This exclusive space opens out onto the nearby lawns overlooking the Castle. The Astor wing itself is an Edwardian extension built onto the Castle in 1903. Designed in the Tudor style, it boasts hand-carved oak panelled walls and large open fireplaces, along with an eclectic collection of private artwork, all while retaining the feel of a private country home. There are also 27 bedrooms here offering onsite accommodation for you and your guests. Finally, the Loggia located in the award-winning Italian Gardens, is the venue’s outdoor ceremony area overlooking the lake. It can host 70 to 180 nearest and dearest for the “I dos.” The Guthrie Pavilion, situated next to the rose garden can accommodate up to 180 for your reception. For more intimate parties, The Astor Wing can host up to 60 nearest and dearest, who can enjoy evening entertainment with you, and perhaps even take a night cap into the Billiards Room or Music Room. Alternatively, the Winter Garden Lawn, which overlooks the Castle, is available for marquee hire for larger parties, who can also enjoy the gardens during the afternoon reception. 29 HISTORICAL VENUES