10 Questions to Ask Before you Hire a Wedding Venue in London, UK
First things first, we at Gibson Hall would like to wish all our past and future clients a joy-filled 2019 – especially those of you who are looking to plan your wedding or civil partnership this year. For most, this will be quite daunting to plan; this blog focuses on the most essential questions brides and grooms-to-be should ask a London wedding venue to ensure that they book their perfect wedding.
- Is the venue available on the chosen date and do you have the venue exclusively? Much of your research can be done online – some venues have their availability visible on their websites but most don’t and need to be contacted direct. If you’re flexible on your London venue then we recommend using a free venue-finding service like venue reservations https://venuereservations.co.uk who can source you the perfect venue by date and give you many options to consider. You can save money by sharing the venue with another couple or couples, but if sharing horrifies you then you’ll need assurances the venue is yours exclusively, or that there are no conferences/ banquets booked that same day at the venue as many are multi-use spaces.
- Can the venue accommodate your budget? Venue hire costs vary depending on the facilities offered, service chosen or location. Many venues have a minimum spend policy.
- Can the venue host your guest numbers perfectly? You’ll want the venue to easily host the numbers for the ceremony, wedding breakfast and/ or evening celebration without the rooms appearing too cramped or too spacious if it’s a smaller party.
- Is the London wedding venue easily accessible for family and friends, particularly if the ceremony and photo shoots take place elsewhere? A choice of Tube/ rail stations on different lines is ideal. There should also be plenty of accommodation choices at different price points nearby.
- Does the venue suit your style/ aspirations? Many of you will wish to have the civil ceremony in the same building, others maybe having a religious ceremony elsewhere, so always find out beforehand whether the management of the venue permits religious rituals to take place, as some venues permit only Indian weddings, for example. You’ll also need to know which spaces are registered to host civil ceremonies and whether those spaces are suitable for you. You’ll be able to narrow down the list of potential London venues by viewing the venue’s facilities online before deciding on which ones to visit in person, which we believe is essential. When you walk into a landmark venue like the Main Hall of Gibson Hall, no photograph can prepare you for the wow factor experienced with our Instagrammable grandeur, inside and out. Your guests will experience that unforgettable emotion too.
- Does the venue provide a free wedding coordinator, plus help on the day and are there any restrictions? Only by visiting the venue and chatting with the wedding coordinator will you know if there are there any timing/ entertainment/ theming/ religious, candles, pyrotechnic or food/ drink restrictions.
- What catering service does the venue offer and does it suit the couple’s needs and pocket? Whether you’re looking for a multi-course sit-down meal, maybe with canapés, or bowl food, buffet, authentic Indian or Kosher cuisine, Vegan or vegetarian options, or even a bespoke tailor-made Michelin-starred menu, the choice is yours. Gibson Hall offers all these options and more with our award-winning caterers KUDOS. London venues often have a preferred supplier list so it’s worth determining whether you have to use these services or can choose your own. Often you can get a significant discount by using the London venue’s in-house services.
- What is the venue’s deposit and cancellation policy? Make sure the contract is lucid and covers all eventualities including a back-up plan for inclement weather. Couples often use our unique garden space for drinks and canapés but we always have other rooms available, just in case.
- Is it a dry hire venue? You’ll save money if the venue can supply suitable furniture, linen, plates, cutlery, glasses, tablecentres, tents, decorations, cake stand, microphones and PA system like Gibson Hall.
- Are there any additional costs to the venue hire, like for insurance, cleaning, breakages, exceeding the bar time or for décor breakdown? Nobody likes hidden costs or nasty surprises!
We would be overjoyed to answer these questions that you should ask your London wedding venue, but is there anything else we can do for you?