I said a while ago that this wouldn’t turn into a wedding blog but the whole point of this project is to document this year and that’s going to be difficult to do without mentioning the wedding. So, the odd ‘wedding’ thing may slip in, because it’s one of the big things on my horizon right now.
After the excitement of the engagement, talk turned pretty quickly to the wedding.
As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not a very bridal person and I’m not a massive fan of weddings in general – which makes it tricky when you’re trying to plan one of your own!
Thankfully, Gary has very similiar taste to mine and so after some discussion, we were able to land on the idea of a very relaxed and informal day, nothing stiff or boring and that we would only hold onto the traditional bits of the wedding that we wanted to.
With this – and our limited budget – in mind, we set about researching alternative wedding venues.
We knew straight away that we didn’t want a church wedding and whilst other couples love doing the big country house hotel thing – which is great, if that’s what you’re wanting to do – we knew that we wanted something smaller and more relaxed.
After a LOT of surfing the net and tapping into the Facebook Hive Mind, we had a short list of seven venues to check out. We booked in to see them all over two weekends and then it was time to hit the road…
Our first stop was The Longhouse in Bruton, a beautiful, purpose built venue with the most stunning views out, over the valley.
We spent about two hours with the owner, Matt, who showed us round and was happy to chat through everything wedding related. He was really nice and we also met his two cats – which was a bonus for me!
We loved it but it would mean stretching ourselves finacially and even maybe getting a loan – and whilst we want our wedding to be a wonderful day, it’s just one day and putting ourselves under financial pressure just isn’t worth it for us.
We went from The Longhouse to the Temple of Minerva, which is in the Botanical Gardens in Royal Victoria Park, Bath.
This is a Georgian garden room, with capacity to seat about thirty people inside. Outside is space for another thirty or so and there is a lawed section to the side, which also comes with it.
We met with Susan and clicked with her straight away. She was lovely and immediately got the kind of feeling that we want for our day. She gave us loads of great ideas and it’s such a beautiful setting, that we both fell in love with it.
Bath will always be special to both of us and Victoria Park in particular is a place that we have spent a lot of time in. It also means that we could go back any time we wanted to, which appeals to my sentimental heart.
Finally, we went to see a beautiful converted barn, just outside of Bath.
Again this was lovely but neither of us got the same feeling that we’d had at the Botanical Gardens and the owners of the barn were quite rigid on what they will allow – they only have one caterer that they work with – which put us off.
We were supposed to see two other venues the following day, but having decided that we didn’t want to stretch ourselves money-wise and having fallen so in love with the Botanical Gardens, we decided to cancel them.
We did go and see one other venue yesterday, a community space in Frome, but we just didn’t get the same feeling as the Gardens and, as it was more expensive, it was quickly crossed off the list.
And so, yesterday evening, I emailed Susan and confirmed that we would like to have our wedding at the Temple of Minerva next summer. I requested a date but until we get confirmation back from her and from the registrar, I don’t want to say it out loud – in case we have to change it!
But this will be my view as I stand with my Dad, waiting to walk down the aisle – or in this case, around the pond!
Gary will be stood in the central doorway and all of our friends and family will be sat in a circle around us, watching us become husband and wife.
And I just can’t wait.