PECKFORTON CASTLE, CHESHIRE
My husband didn’t get a say in choosing our venue. I’d been to Peckforton three years beforehand and had fallen in love with it the moment I saw it. Te castle’s family-run which made us feel instantly at home and, luckily for me, Dave also liked it straightaway. Te space allowed our guests to be able to relax in the way that they wanted. Afer the reception fnished in the Great Hall, we kept the party going in the wine cellar – an amazing round room lit by candles – without keeping the rest of the castle awake.
EASTNOR CASTLE, HEREFORDSHIRET
is castle did a royally good job standing in for Windsor Castle in W.E., a biopic of Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson (played by James D’Arcy and Andrea Riseborough, right). You’ll feel like royalty when you wed in the Gothic Drawing Room (there’s also a pretty church 10 minutes away which can seat 150). Dine in the Great Hall with its 60f-high ceilings or for a bigger bash, pitch a marquee next to the lake.
REGAL TURRETS THOSE ALL IMPORTANT TOWERS A FAIRYTALE DO Photo Gallery
ALNWICK CASTLE, NORTHUMBERLAND
Your guests will be spellbound at this 700-year-old castle, which starred as Hogwarts in the frst two Harry Potter flms. Choose between the Guest Hall for a medieval feast or the partly ruined Hulne Abbey in the neighbouring Hulne Park. For an even more fantastical ceremony, check out the castle’s gardens (alnwickgarden.com) next door where you can exchange vows in a fairylight-laced treehous.
HIGHCLERE CASTLE, BERKSHIRES
Wap medieval battlements for Victorian spires and towers, and have a lavish do at Highclere Castle aka Downton Abbey. Make like the Crawley family and exchange vows in the dramatic Saloon before retiring to the library for your wedding breakfast rustled up from ‘below stairs’.
LEEDS CASTLE, KENT
You don’t get more fairytale than this – a turreted fantasy marooned on two islands in the River Len, which forms the castle’s huge moat. What better way to arrive at this princess palace than by horse and carriage? Once there, you have the choice of three stately spaces in which to wed. So will you pick the regal castle dining room, the 17th-century timber-framed barn of Fairfax Hall or the castle’s self-contained party pad, Te Maiden’s Tower?
CHÂTEAU RHIANFA, WALESA
Little bit of France transported to the Isle of Anglesey in Wales, this Loire-inspired château complete with fairytale turrets makes for a romantic location for your big day. Te 21 bedrooms are a quirky blend of decadence (one boasts a 7f round bed) and contemporary comforts. Arrive at the private beach by boat for an entrance as show-stopping as the setting.
AMBERLEY CASTLE, WEST SUSSEX
Set among beautiful landscaped gardens, Amberley’s working portcullis and 60-foot high curtained wall make for the ultimate backdrop. Te Great Room – think open freplace, tapestries and coats of armour – is made for your reception. And for your frst night try the ‘Chichester’, with its generous four-poster bed and whirlpool bath.
WADHURST CASTLE, EAST SUSSEXT
İs pocket-sized castle means you don’t need a Royal Wedding-style guest list to have a do ft for a princess. Bring the outdoors in and exchange vows in the intimate plant-flled Winter Garden conservatory or for a bigger party the pretty walled garden can seat 120. Either way, the majestic setting and views of the Sussex countryside will royally impress your guests.
AUGILL CASTLE, CUMBRIA
Of course, there are towers and turrets and even a fag futtering on top of this petite pile, but there are also 14 eclectic bedrooms (forget four-poster beds, one even has a four-poster bath), a cinema (with popcorn, natch) as well as the sunny Music Room for ceremonies and a royal blue and gold banqueting hall for your wedding breakfast.
THORNBURY CASTLE, GLOUCESTERSHIRE
It’s not just the towers and ramparts that are impressive here – the four-poster in the Tower Suite is reputedly the widest one in England. Inside, this Tudor castle looks exactly as you’d picture – all heavy oak doors, suits of armour, ornately carved ceilings and heavy tapestries. Tere’s a banqueting hall that’s ideal for your feast where you’ll enjoy locally sourced ingredients including wine from the hotel’s 500-year-old vineyard.
INVERLOCHY CASTLE, SCOTLAND
Queen Victoria once remarked about Inverlochy: ‘I never saw a lovelier or more romantic spot.’ And we have to agree. In the foothills of the mighty Ben Nevis, among the glens and lochs of the Scottish Highlands, it really is hard to top. Take the hotel exclusively; it can sleep up to 34 so you don’t have to leave (for now) and there’s a Michelin-starred chef to whip up a feast using the fnest Scottish ingredients.
SUDELEY CASTLE, GLOUCESTERSHIRE
In its 1,000 years, this Cotswolds castle has seen more royals through its doors than a Saturday night at Boujis (it was also the location for Elizabeth Hurley’s lavish wedding to Arun Nayar). It makes a breathtaking setting and has acres of award-winning gardens. Exchange vows in the newly available private Library or have a blessing in the pretty St Mary’s Chapel before moving to a marquee tucked between the 15th-century ruins and the ornamental pond.
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