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Six reasons to plan a 2025 wedding July 9, 2024

Six reasons to plan a 2025 wedding

Congratulations! You’re engaged. You’ve found the person you want to experience life with. So… what are you waiting for?

Planning a wedding for 2025 is absolutely possible, even for the most organised people out there. Most wedding venues still have availability (check out Combermere Abbey’s available dates for 2025 and 2026), not to mention, you’re likely to nab some great offers which allow your budget to stretch that little bit further. Plus, how exciting to know that your big day is just around the corner!

Need convincing? Here are six reasons why you should take the leap and choose to plan your wedding in 2025.

One – No time like the present!

Who doesn’t want to step outside of their comfort zone and experience new experiences?! To say yes to more opportunities. To take risks and challenge ourselves. To do things that are outside of our comfort zone.

You’re engaged – you said yes. Now it’s time to say ‘I do’. Just go for it! You’ve chosen to spend the rest of your lives together, so enjoy the whirlwind of wedding planning, because there really is no time like the present to get started.

Two – A boost for your budget

You’ll almost certainly get more for your money by opting to plan a 2025 wedding. As many weddings are booked more than a year in advance, venues may have late availability slots to fill.

This presents a great opportunity to take advantage of special offers, enabling you to do bigger things with your budget. An out-of-reach dream venue may now be within your price range thanks to 2025 wedding discounts.

Psst! Check out our special offers on 2025 dates!

Three – Get carried away with the romance

That honeymoon bubble doesn’t have to burst. Let the romance of your engagement flow straight through to your wedding day.

Harness the loved-up feelings of your engagement and put them to use with wedding planning. Think personalised vows during your wedding ceremony and thoughtful touches on the day, created over countless date nights with a dash of planning thrown in.

Four – Bag a bargain

Like venues, other wedding suppliers will be looking to fill dates that they have available. That supercharges your bargaining power, making those dream details achievable with great deals for your 2025 wedding.

Think everything from DJs, florists and caterers to décor hire and entertainment. Even small savings can help make your spending power go further.

Five – Stay on track

Wedding planning can seem daunting, so set dates throughout the year to keep your wedding planning focused. If it feels overwhelming, just remember your dream wedding day isn’t far away. One of the greatest gifts of a shorter wedding planning journey is that you can stay focused, remain enthusiastic and allow yourself to get truly excited as your day fast approaches.

Six – Why wait?

Above all, once you’ve chosen your venue and set the date, you won’t want to wait. Stunning wedding gowns will be calling your name, flowers in carefully curated colours will be filling your mind, and you’ll be counting down the days until you finally say ‘I do’.

Do you think a 2025 wedding could be your dream come true? Download our wedding brochure and book your visit – we’d love to show you around at Combermere Abbey. Plus, we have some very special offers for the remaining 2025 dates.

40 Wedding Venue Questions To Ask Before Booking March 21, 2024
© Liam + Bee

40 Wedding Venue Questions To Ask Before Booking

Choosing the perfect wedding venue is the first big decision you’ll make in your wedding planning journey, and whilst good looks and gut feel will initially draw you to a venue, it’s important to make sure you’re asking the right questions before you secure a booking.

We’ve assembled 40 essential questions you should be asking wedding venues before final decisions are made. Bring these questions along with you to your venue visits, and you’ll be in a strong position to make an informed decision before paying a deposit and securing your dream wedding venue.

Questions to ask wedding venues about dates and pricing

What dates are available in the season/month/year we’re considering?
Top tip – if you’re not overly concerned with having a weekend date, many venues have more availability during the week.

How many hours do we have the wedding venue for?
How early can we arrive and how late can we stay? Is there an option to pay for a later finishing time?

Will we have exclusive use of the wedding venue?
How much is the deposit, and when is it due?

What are your payment terms?
What is your cancellation policy?

When is the deadline for making changes to our reservation?

Do you have liability insurance, and do you require that we have our own wedding insurance?

Questions to ask about logistics and event essentials

What are your minimum/maximum guest numbers?

Are you licensed to hold ceremonies as well as wedding receptions?

Are there noise restrictions?
Some venues will not permit outside spaces to be used in the evening because of noise restrictions, or they may have a specific cut-off time for music.

Are there sufficient bathrooms for my guest numbers, or will we need to rent portable toilets?

Is parking available on-site?
Check how many cars can be accommodated and whether parking is chargeable. If parking isn’t available, where will guests park?

What on-site accommodation options are available?
Check how many guests can stay at the wedding venue on the night of the wedding and whether they can offer a discount for booking multiple rooms.

Are there plenty of nearby accommodation options for guests?
Ask for a list of recommended hotels close by.

Are taxis easy to arrange from the venue?

Do you have disabled access?

Is there a bridal suite and space for the groom to get ready?
You’ll want to make sure that there’s enough space for your wedding party to join you as you prepare on the morning of your wedding day.

What alternative options are available if we can’t use outdoor spaces because of inclement weather?

How much support can we expect from your in-house event team?
Will they be on hand to help coordinate our wedding day, and will they be involved in setting up / packing down decor?

Does the wedding venue have its own sound equipment and speakers, or will those need to be supplied by the entertainment?
Check if the venue has a sound system for both ceremony / ambient music and microphones for speeches.

Questions to ask wedding venues about suppliers

Do you have a list of approved or recommended wedding suppliers we can use?

Do we have to use your approved suppliers?

If we’re free to use whoever we choose, will they need to meet any approval criteria from the wedding venue, e.g. have liability insurance?

What time can suppliers start setting up on the wedding day?

Questions to ask about food & drink

Do you have an in-house caterer?

Is there a food and drink minimum?

Can we attend a food tasting appointment, and will this cost extra?

Are tables, linens, chairs, plates, cutlery and glassware provided?
If the wedding venue is a ‘dry hire’ venue, you will likely be expected to rent these yourself and can typically do so via your caterer, a wedding planner, or a stylist.

Is there a corkage or service fee for alcoholic drinks?

How is alcohol priced, and is there a bar minimum?

Are there additional charges for bar staff, or is this included in the hire fee?

Questions to ask wedding venues about décor

Are we allowed to bring in our own decorations?

Are there any restrictions?
Some wedding venues will not permit you to hang items or attach anything to walls or ceilings if it may cause damage to paintwork or surfaces.

Can we hire any décor from you?
The wedding venue may allow you to hire lighting, lawn games, signage or sweet carts from them.

Do we have permission to use flame candles, confetti, sparklers, fireworks, animals, food trucks, etc?
It’s worth checking if the wedding venue has limitations around what can and can’t be included before you make a booking.

Can you provide heaters and/or umbrellas for outdoor spaces?

Closing questions

Who will be our primary point of contact as we plan our wedding, and will this be the person coordinating our wedding day?

Can we meet them today?

Weddings at Combermere Abbey

If you’re searching for a wedding venue that boasts history, charm and acres of parkland, gardens and woodland, consider booking a visit to Combermere Abbey in Cheshire. This former monastery boasts spectacular Gothic architecture, enchanting waters and a breathtaking Edwardian Glasshouse.

This wedding venue will be exclusively yours for your wedding day, allowing you to choose between an indoor or outdoor wedding ceremony, followed by the choice of a whole variety of spaces to delight and surprise your guests.

Experience the venue by arranging a show round. And if you’ve already made up your mind, take a look at our available dates and prices.

Choosing the perfect wedding venue April 4, 2023

Choosing the perfect wedding venue

Here’s how to choose the perfect wedding venue

Your wedding day is one of the most special occasions in your life, and choosing the perfect venue is crucial to ensuring that your big day is unforgettable. Your venue sets the tone for your entire wedding, and the right choice can make all the difference. With so many different options available, it can be overwhelming to decide on the perfect wedding venue for you. In this blog post, we will guide you through the process of choosing the perfect wedding venue, and introduce you to a stunning venue that ticks all the boxes – Combermere Abbey.


One of the first things to consider when choosing a wedding venue is the location. Do you want to stay close to home or have a destination wedding?

Cheshire is a beautiful county that offers a wealth of benefits for couples looking to tie the knot. The county is known for its stunning landscapes, and is easily accessible from major cities like Manchester and Liverpool, making it convenient for guests who are travelling from afar.

Combermere Abbey is located in the heart of the Cheshire countryside, offering a picturesque setting for your special day. Surrounded by acres of stunning parkland, it provides a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.


The size of your guest list will dictate the capacity of your wedding venue. If you’re planning a small, intimate wedding, a cosy venue with character might be the perfect fit. If you’re planning a larger wedding, you’ll need a venue that can accommodate all of your guests comfortably.

Combermere Abbey can cater for both large and small weddings, with a capacity of up to 120 guests for a ceremony and wedding breakfast, and up to 150 guests for an evening reception. The venue offers a range of flexible spaces to suit your needs, from the intimate Glasshouse to the grand Pavilion.


The style of your wedding venue should reflect your personal taste and complement the theme of your wedding. Whether you’re dreaming of a rustic barn wedding or a grand country house affair, there’s a venue out there that’s perfect for you.

Combermere Abbey is a stunning country estate that combines historic charm with modern luxury. The venue boasts a variety of spaces, from the rustic Stone Lodge to the elegant Drawing Room, all of which can be styled to suit your vision.


Food is a big part of any wedding, and it’s important to choose a venue that can provide delicious, high-quality catering that meets your dietary requirements and preferences.

Combermere Abbey’s talented fine-dining team will work with you to create a bespoke menu that suits your taste and style. From canapés to three-course meals, the team uses locally-sourced, seasonal ingredients to create delicious, memorable dishes.

Combermere Abbey stone lodge living room


If you’re planning a wedding that lasts more than a day, you’ll need to consider accommodation for yourself and your guests. Whether you want to stay on-site or prefer nearby hotels, it’s important to choose a venue that can provide comfortable, convenient accommodation options.

Combermere Abbey offers luxurious on-site accommodation for up to 49 guests, including the charming North Wing, the idyllic Lakeside Cottage, and the stunning Stone Lodge. The venue is also located near a range of hotels and B&Bs, offering plenty of options for your guests.

Combermere Abbey – The Perfect Wedding Venue

Combermere Abbey is a stunning wedding venue that offers everything you need for your special day. With its picturesque location, flexible spaces, delicious catering, luxurious accommodation, and impeccable service, Combermere Abbey is the perfect choice for couples who want a wedding that’s truly unforgettable.

At Combermere Abbey, you’ll have access to a dedicated wedding coordinator who will work with you every step of the way to ensure that your wedding is exactly how you envision it. From your initial enquiry to your big day, the team at Combermere Abbey will go above and beyond to make sure that your wedding is everything you dreamed of and more.

Find out more

If you’re interested in learning more about Combermere Abbey, why not come and visit us and book a personal viewing appointment.

Book a show round
Perks Of Having Your Wedding Guests Stay The Night June 15, 2022

Perks Of Having Your Wedding Guests Stay The Night

When arranging a wedding, remember that your guests are an important part of making the day special. The more fun they have, the more fun you will have too! Plus, this always makes your wedding one to remember too. Did you know at Combermere Abbey 49 of your guests can stay on site in our beautiful self-catering cottages? It’s absolutely perfect for making the most of the wedding celebrations without the worries of driving home.

Below are our team’s top five reasons to consider having your wedding guests stay over on your special stay.


4 Perks Of Having Your Wedding Guests Stay The Night


Having their own space


There’s often a space between the wedding ceremony and the reception, and although there is lots of fun to be had within the Walled Gardens outside the Pavilion for those moments, guests also like the chance to freshen up for the evening. It’s simple for those staying to get back and forth because our cottages are just a few steps away from the venue!


No need to travel home


Our grounds at Combermere are in the heart of rural Cheshire surrounded by ancient trees and rolling countryside, which gives our weddings a private and exclusive aspect. However, it can also be difficult for your guests to get home after the party ends. Organising buses and taxis can be a nightmare… Especially at early hours of the morning. By having your guests stay the night there is no need for you to worry about how they’ll get home, the only worry will be what time they get to bed!


More time to talk to your guests


Ask anyone who you know that’s already married, the day of your wedding is a busy one, and time flies by so quickly that the bride and groom don’t always get to speak to everyone whose there. The beauty of your guests staying the night is you get a little extra time to catch up with them. The next morning, that extra time to say hello and thank your friends and family for coming makes such a difference.


The morning after debriefing


And finally, picture this. The wedding day has passed, everyone has had their fill of partying, and the headaches have begun to set in. Nothing beats reminiscing about the happenings of the previous night after a party. As we mentioned, the bride and groom often have a busy night trying to talk to everyone and therefore may miss out on some of the laughs that your friends had throughout the night. One way is to catch up the next morning and find out all the latest gossip from previous night with your loved ones and relive the experience all over again. We recommend visiting The Old Piggery Café on the edge of the estate after checking out to discuss the night before over delicious brunch and coffee.


Did you know that if you have your wedding at Combermere Abbey, you and your guests staying onsite with us will automatically become a “Friend of Combermere” and receive a discount when you or they come back and see us within 12 months. This is a wonderful way to enjoy the memories in a relaxed atmosphere. You can check our latest offers by clicking here. If you’re looking for a wedding venue, at the moment when you book all of our courtyard cottages within two months of booking your wedding, you can enjoy your wedding night stay in our North Wing entirely free of charge!


How To Achieve A Regency-Style Wedding October 27, 2021

How To Achieve A Regency-Style Wedding

There’s little chance you didn’t watch Netflix’s “Bridgerton”, but if you didn’t, you’ve definitely heard of it! The show captured hearts and minds in 2020 thanks to the beautiful sets and costumes – and equally beautiful actors. It is currently the streaming platform’s biggest show of all time, and has spouted trends here, there and everywhere. Online searches for ‘blusher’ reportedly rose 148% following the show’s release.


Set in the Regency period, the show has also sparked interest in Regency-era style, makeup, and, of course, weddings. The success of other Netflix shows, such as ‘The Crown,’ have also raised the popularity of royalty-themed fashion and décor.


Below, we’ve listed some of the ways in which you can have your own Regency-style weddings, for those who love the traditional look – and you don’t have to have a Netflix subscription to read on!


How to Achieve a Regency-Style Wedding


Dress To Impress


Regency-era dresses were often, but not always, white. Though Daphne Bridgerton’s beautiful vintage gown was the traditional colour, the use of splashy colour throughout the show is indicative of the way the era embraced pastels and neutral tones – think baby blue, lilac and pale pink. White tends to be the conventional colour of choice for brides, but why not switch things up to be in keeping with your theme?


As for style, the beautiful empire waistlines of Jane Austin’s era are universally flattering. Ebay reportedly saw a 205% rise in ‘puff-sleeve wedding dresses’ after the release of Bridgerton.


The era was known for beautiful fabrics such as lace, chiffon and taffeta: choose a design with capped sleeves and fitted bodice for an authentic look. Vintage lace boots peeping out underneath the skirt will in enhance the regency feel to your look.


As for your groom, take inspiration from Mr. Darcy and go for dark grey pinstriped trousers, a crisp white shirt, fitted waistcoat and a silk tie – finished off with a tailcoat!


The style is a more ‘casual’ one in comparison to some types of dress, like ballgown or slim, straight dresses. Perfect for if you want that youthful look that the Regency era was known for.



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A post shared by Lizzie Siddal (@somniumdantis)


Pastel Décor


Search terms for ‘blue wedding’’ have risen since Bridgerton was launched, as the colour features prominently in the show – the lovely pastel blue of the Bridgerton family home is a running theme! And the old adage of ‘something borrowed, something blue’ means there’s an extra meaning to the colour, too.


Choosing a single colour, or two, as your theme will tie together the whole look of your wedding – and there’s so much to have fun with once you do.


Why not decorate your venue with seasonal flowers, ribbons and lace? For the tables, crisp white linen tablecloths, decorated with antique-style silver tealight holders and hurricane lanterns, finished off with greenery and large flowers as a centrepiece work wonderfully.


From the venue decorations to table settings and bridesmaids’ dresses, you can really go wild with your ideas!



Extra Details


Last, but not least, it tends to be the little details of a wedding that people remember most. These are the finishing touches that will remind your guests of the Regency era, whilst keeping the theme romantic and tailored to your own personal style!


Here are some of our ideas on little extras that will really immerse your guests in the theme:


  • Hire a harpist or a string quartet to play songs old and new while your guests eat their meal – or you could even have your first dance to a song they play!
  • Traditional lawn games such as croquet, skittles and bowls will keep your guests entertained.
  • A horse and carriage as your wedding transport will show you to your venue in style. Or why not use a classic car? Though not strictly Regency-era, some of the earliest cars in the UK began emerging in the late nineteenth century.
  • Regency-era hairstyles were relatively simple, so why not keep your bridal hair as tidy as Daphne Bridgerton’s? Paired with an embellished headband, you’re bound to look the belle of the ball.


At Combermere Abbey, we love seeing your wedding ideas, both big and small. There’s so much to consider when planning your wedding, whether low-key or more lavish – but at the end of the day whatever suits you is the right choice! What will the next trend in wedding themes be?

To find out more about our wedding venue, contact [email protected], and keep up to date with us, and find more inspiration, via our social media channels. You can find us on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.



Achieving A Natural Wedding Video With Newton Films October 1, 2021

Achieving A Natural Wedding Video With Newton Films

This guest blog on how to achieve a natural-looking wedding video was written by Jonathan Newton, owner of Newton Films and one of Combermere Abbey’s recommended videographers.

Your wedding is one of the most special and memorable days of your life: naturally, there is a huge emphasis placed on the photos and videos you’ll have of the day, as this is how people will remember the day in the years to come! The day itself often goes by very quickly for people, so what better way to document it than by hiring a wedding Videographer?

Below, Jonathan discusses his tips for achieving that perfect natural wedding video of your dreams.

4 Tips For Achieving A Natural Wedding Video

“How do we capture such natural wedding video shots?” is a question we get asked all the time. Couples tend to be conscious that they don’t want their day to appear staged, or for every shot to appear like it’s been set up. Here are four of the ways in which we achieve this and what we’d recommend to you too…

Act natural

As videographers, we are there to capture what is going on, not to add to it. We shoot in a documentary style way, wherein we capture from the background, out of the way, so that couples and their guests can focus on the day; enjoying the atmosphere and the company. Capturing a drinks reception, for example, where we can find genuine laughter and smiles is absolutely perfect – it makes our films look more natural.

So, don’t worry about appearing a certain way, or making your guests do anything out of the ordinary. Just act how you usually would. The atmosphere of your wedding is enough to make sure the photos and videos of your magical day appear beautifully natural.

Have fun!

As videographers, our job is to make you feel comfortable and to enjoy the process as much as possible. We want you to have fun for many reasons: not just because it’ll make the process of capturing you and your spouse’s happiness on the day, making for genuine laughter and smiles. But because, quite simply, you deserve to feel as happy and comfortable as possible!

So do whatever you can to have a giggle and add a bit of levity to the situation, do it! You’re guaranteed to come out with a natural video you’ll cherish forever. We always recommend taking time out of each hour to spend with your new husband or wife, as this makes for beautiful intimate moments, and also helps to keep you grounded and relaxed on what is otherwise an admittedly hectic day.

natural wedding video

Natural lighting

We use natural lighting wherever possible in order to give that authentic glow to our photographs and videos. It not only looks great but also relaxes our couples as it goes back to our subtle methods of filming. It may be that things need to be adjusted a little, but you can guarantee that natural lighting makes photos look warm and authentic.

This is something worth keeping in mind when choosing a venue too if ending up with a beautiful wedding video is one of your end goals. Does it have plenty of open spaces and lovely lighting in the ceremonial rooms? As we head into autumn and winter, we also need to consider that sunlight isn’t as common, so we look for venues that have light and airy settings with lots of neutrality and white colours, as this helps give us the best possible setting for natural-looking photos.

natural wedding video

Get to know us

One of the best ways we suggest to capture a natural film is to really get to know your Videographer. When you are relaxed around someone, you instantly become more natural. We always aim to have a great relationship with our couples before the day – because when we arrive, it’s more like a friend turning up than a supplier!

Don’t be afraid to chat and ask your photographer or videographer lots of questions, so you can form that bond. Then you’re guaranteed to get the natural video you want on your wedding day.

Anything we’ve missed?

If you have some tips and tricks of your own to achieve a natural wedding video, why not let us know on social media? Be sure to tag Combermere Abbey on Facebook, and Instagram!

Jonathan Newton is one of Combermere Abbey’s recommended film-makers and has been used by many of the happy couples who have held their weddings here. Jonathan and his wife Jessica use an unobtrusive, relaxed and authentic approach to their work in order to capture couples and their guests at their most natural and best.

You can find more about Newton Films at

Tips For Finding The Perfect Wedding Cake From Fiona Hackshall August 20, 2021

Tips For Finding The Perfect Wedding Cake From Fiona Hackshall

This guest blog was written by Fiona Hackshall, one of our wonderful recommended suppliers. Fiona is a Nantwich-based wedding cake designer who was a regional finalist in the 2018 and 2019 North West Wedding Industry Awards. Below, Fiona gives our blog readers her top tips for finding yourself a wedding cake you and your guests will love.

Tips For Finding The Perfect Wedding Cake

Your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life. No wonder people hunt high and low to find the perfect venue, dress, décor and more – it’s going to be a day to remember! Your wedding cake is no different. After all, it’s one of the most important photo opportunities of the day – the classic photo of the happy couple cutting the first slice.

Traditionally, there might have been a set idea of what a wedding cake looks like, but these days, anything goes. As long as you and your partner are happy – and you think your guests will be too – there’s no end to the individual twists you can put on your centrepiece.

Without further ado, here are my top tips for finding the perfect wedding cake for your special day.

Keep Your Style Individual

It might be tempting to copy designs you have seen floating around online, and although imitation is the highest form of flattery, it’s pretty uninspiring to simply replicate something like-for-like!

Talk to your wedding cake designer about what it is you would like and allow them to help you come up with a unique design. They can help you match the cake to the style of your wedding. For example, if you are having a relaxed intimate wedding, this could be reflected with a less formal design, such as a ‘naked’ or ‘semi-naked’ cake.

Alternatively, if you are having a themed wedding, the cake of course can be decorated to fit in with this – as bold, bright, and beautiful as you’d like!

Consider Your Cake Flavours

It’s not all about looks – how your cake tastes is just as, if not equally, important. It’s not just for photos, after all!

Choosing a classic flavour such as vanilla, chocolate or lemon is always a safe road to go down. However, if you can’t make your mind up, multi-tiered cakes can be made up of different flavours. A more traditional flavour in one, with maybe more unusual ones in other tiers, could be the perfect combination for reflecting your personal taste, or encompassing a special meaning.

Alternatively, if you like the look of a really big cake, you can have a false tier put in the bottom, meaning you will have the ‘wow’ factor – without lots of cake left over. You’d be surprised at how many couples go for this option!

Think About Positioning

You might not have given it much thought, but the backdrop behind where your cake is actually pretty important too. The placement should enhance your cake and should not be too ‘busy’. This allows the cake to stand out and look its very best! I find that plain colours usually work well. I love working with Combermere Abbey as a venue as the Pavilion is very neutral and can be dressed to the style of the couple.

Take a look at your venue and see where the cake might be best displayed – if you need any advice, don’t be afraid to ask. Usually, venues are quite flexible.

Cake Trends By Wedding Size

This coming year is looking to be a year of contrasts in terms of wedding cake style.

As more couples opt for intimate celebrations, with only the closest of family and friends, I’ve noticed that cakes are more likely to be relaxed and modest. Buttercream covering, accompanied by decorations of fresh flowers, is still popular and suits the smaller wedding.

In contrast, with the bigger and more extravagant weddings that we’re beginning to see more of, the cake will likely be larger and more glamourous – such as iced cake covered in large handmade sugar blooms.

Popular Cake Trends Now And For 2022

I believe that the use of edible wafer paper will continue to grow in popularity. Flowers made from this material are light and airy, adding a really delicate feel to the cake design. Wafer paper sails are also being used to lend a sense of movement to modern designs.

Flowers of all descriptions as remain popular as ever, I have noticed more couples making use of beautiful, pressed edible flowers on cake designs as well as dried grasses and flowers this year.

Whatever cake you opt for, the most important thing is that it’s one you love – and feels just right for you and your special day. There’s no better feeling than seeing your guests enjoy something you spent time making just right, so spending a little time personalising your centre piece will go a long way!

Intimate Weddings vs Grand Celebrations, What’s Best For You? July 8, 2021

Intimate Weddings vs Grand Celebrations, What’s Best For You?

The challenges our industry has seen over the past year has meant a change in how weddings take place. It’s certainly been tough, and our hearts go out to all our couples who were meant to exchange their vows not just at Combermere Abbey, but everywhere throughout 2020 and this year. We’re looking forward to finally resuming the postponed weddings and seeing so many happy couples getting ready to embark on their futures together.

As restrictions begin to lift, what type of wedding will you be aspiring to? We covered in a previous blog that intimate weddings were becoming popular even before the pandemic. But there’s no denying how much fun a grand celebration can be with all your family and friends around you, creating a vibrant party energy as you take your first steps into marriage.

Credit: David Stubbs Photography

So, which is best for you, an intimate wedding or a larger celebration?

Opting For an Intimate Wedding 

Having an intimate wedding is ideal if you’re looking to make it deeply personal or to keep a lower budget. Less expenses means more money to save for the honeymoon of your dreams.

Having a guest list with just your nearest and dearest keeps the day more relaxed and of course an intimate wedding requires less planning and attention, which means you can spend more time mingling with your guests.

Some wedding venues have accommodation on-site, perfect for extending the nuptials. At Combermere Abbey we have 10 self-catering cottages, ideal for turning a wedding day into a weekend celebration with family and friends.

Credit: Helen Williams Photography

Although we are all looking forward to the lifting of government restrictions later this month, we know that Covid will continue to be around. Therefore, it will be our individual responsibility at Combermere Abbey to manage our events safely. All of this means, though, that you’ll have lots of options with Combermere Abbey to create your own special memorable event.

Big Wedding, Big Ideas 

After the year we’ve had, it’s safe to say that your sights may be set on a huge wedding – the kind of event that has everyone on the guest list. After a long period of restrictions on socialising, we certainly wouldn’t blame you if you opted for a grand wedding.

If you’ve got a lot of special people in your life, a grand wedding is ideal for accommodating everyone. At Combermere, our self-catering cottages accommodate up to 49 guests, meaning your closest family and friends won’t have to book a hotel further away from the venue.

It’s an opportunity to make up for lost time too, so why not go all out and have plenty of fun? With a bigger wedding, more attention will be paid to venue dressing, as you’ll have more space to work with. Here at Combermere, our Pavilion is a purposefully blank canvas for venue dressing, ideal for any theme, colour or design. The ceiling is also complete with twinkling lights, so it will feel as if you’re dancing under the stars.

Speaking of dancing… A bigger wedding means plenty of people to fill the dance floor, when restrictions allow for this. Our Pavilion has a fabulous dance floor, separated from the reception area by white threads cascading from the ceiling. You may think a bigger dance floor is the way to go but you’ll find a smaller dance floor is always better for offering that party vibe! Of course, this would not be complete without a DJ or a band and if you’re having a big celebration, music is a must.

Credit: Paul Joseph Photography

There’s a lot to consider when planning what type of wedding you want, whether it’s more low-key or a lavish celebration – it’s important to go with your own wedding vision. If you want the best of both worlds, an intimate wedding followed by a big party at a later date is an ideal compromise. This is also particularly ideal for those with families overseas who are having difficulty travelling at the moment, why not have a small ceremony that can be shared via live stream (something we can now accommodate), and then get the party started at a later date when it’s safe to do so?

To find out more about our wedding venue please contact [email protected]. Or you can keep up to date with us and get inspired by our social media channels. Find us on FacebookInstagramPinterest and Twitter.

Wedding Trends We Hope To See In 2021 January 21, 2021

Wedding Trends We Hope To See In 2021


2020 was a heartbreaking year for the wedding industry, with almost all celebrations postponed. We felt the impact of this at Combermere Abbey, and our heart went out to all the wedding suppliers affected, as well, of course, as the couples who couldn’t enjoy their special day as planned. Throughout the past year, we’ve been a fierce advocate of the #WhatAboutWeddings campaign and our team has even been offering advice out to couples who had to re-schedule their wedding day in the likes of Happiful magazine.

However, we recognise that the past is the past and we are looking at 2021 with a hopeful heart and really believe that we’ll see a return of wedding celebrations this year. This is strengthened by speculation in parliament that Easter could see some form of normality resume for our industry. So, with this in mind, our wedding planning team have put together some wedding trends that we hope and expect to see this year.

Wedding Trends For 2021

Double Celebrations

We believe some brides and grooms may consider a double celebration. As you’re aware, currently weddings are only permitted to take place in exceptional circumstances and as restrictions ease, it’s likely that capacity limits may only increase incrementally rather than in one go. So couples could choose to exchange their vows on their intended date in a small and intimate ceremony, and then enjoy a larger celebration later in the year as normal numbers become acceptable. Here at Combermere, we are already talking to couples about such an option, with The Glasshouse for the ceremony and our Pavilion as the ideal venue for a larger party later on. For more information or to ask specific questions, please email our team on [email protected].

Image credit: Paul Joseph Photography

Buying Local

Numerous lockdowns have devastated so many wonderful local talented and creative suppliers and that’s been felt throughout the wedding industry. We champion those small businesses, and we encourage all our couples in 2021 and beyond to support local suppliers in their wedding celebrations, you can find our suppliers via our website.

Intimate Weddings

It goes without saying that the popularity of intimate weddings is on the rise, and not just because of the current restrictions forcing a change in plans. One of the rising wedding trends for 2021, is offering couples this option that they might not have considered up until this point. Last year, we wrote a blog on the benefits of choosing an intimate wedding day, which included having more time to spend with close friends and family and also having the opportunity for those loved ones to stay overnight and extend the celebration with you when you choose a wedding venue with accommodation.

Future Of Weddings - Small Weddings?

Image credit: Toni Darcy Photography

Eco-Friendly Celebrations

Every year, we become more environmentally conscious and sustainability is now even playing a bit part in weddings. Even making small changes to your day such as sourcing local produce for meals, or opting for biodegradable confetti, are becoming more popular amongst couples looking to marry in 2021 and beyond. At our sustainable wedding venue in Cheshire, we plant a tree in our bridal grove for every wedding that takes place. It’s our way at Combermere of saying thank you and acknowledging your wedding day and creating a beautiful memoir of your special time which you can come back and visit year on yearWeekday Weddings

Due to limited wedding availability following postponed celebrations, those who are looking for a last-minute venue might consider a weekday wedding. Though not as traditional, there’s so much to love about a weekday wedding if your guests can afford the time off work. Extend your celebration with an overnight stay at your venue, a larger selection of dates to choose from and of course you can benefit from lower costs.

Making Up For Lost Time

Finally, we believe that one of the big themes for 2021 will be making up for lost time, for those who had to postpone their date last year. A focus on experience, whether that’s including fun and games in your wedding day (we love lawn games), or going all out on your venue dressing. As soon as it’s safe to host a large celebration, we can’t wait to see them taking place at our beautiful garden venue again. The time will soon come for plenty of love and laughter.

If you’d like to find out more about our award-winning wedding venue, based on the Cheshire/Shropshire border, you can get in touch with our team on [email protected]. Or keep up-to-date with us on social media. You can find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest.

Glamorous Cheshire Wedding: Abi and Charlie at Combermere Abbey

Image credit: Gingerbeard Wedding Photography


Viewing A Wedding Venue During A Pandemic December 10, 2020

Viewing A Wedding Venue During A Pandemic


The country is in and out of various restrictions, the latest being the tier system, making viewing a wedding venue a difficult affair. Nobody wants to press pause on planning their wedding day, you should have something to look forward to. It’s hoped that by Spring 2021, weddings will be able to “return to normal”, that’s what Prime Minister Boris Johnson says and here at Combermere Abbey, we are hoping for the very same. Viewing a wedding venue is a process that has been made complicated by the Covid-19 outbreak, but one that we hope to make easier for you. Below, our wedding planning team will walk you through what’s involved in a venue showround as well as what you can expect at Combermere Abbey.

Is Viewing A Wedding Venue Permitted?

With the UK now in a tier system, wedding venue showrounds are allowed to continue. The only difference is that travel between regions is not advised for those under a ‘very high’ alert. This means that if you’re in a tier 3 area, then you should be looking to take a Zoom showround instead. Wedding venue showrounds should be booked directly with your venue and it is expected that all staff have Covid secure measures in place as we do here at Combermere Abbey.

Viewing a wedding venue during Covid-19 | Combermere Abbey

Credit: The Crawleys

What To Expect From Viewing A Wedding Venue

Wedding venue showrounds aren’t quite what they used to be pre-Covid. The experience is still incredibly special and is the beginning of your journey, the main change is that guidelines are in place to keep everybody safe, and in some cases (for example, for those in tier 3 areas), you might have to go virtual – the theme of 2020!

Here’s some of the things that you can expect from Combermere Abbey when you book a showround of our exquisite venue on the Cheshire/Shropshire border…

Rigid Covid Secure Protocols

Combermere Abbey has been following strict Covid guidelines since the Spring. All of our staff have undergone training, there are sanitisation points around the estate and during showrounds masks will be offered. Our utmost priority is keeping our guests safe, whether they’re here for our accommodation or to take a tour of our wedding venue. When you book a showround with us, you can speak to our team beforehand about what will happen when you come to visit, to give you total peace of mind. This is something that should be expected whenever you’re viewing a wedding venue during a pandemic, as safety is our number one priority.

One-On-One Wedding Support

We’ve always ensured that our couples feel looked after right from the very first point of contact. In a time of Covid, this has never been more important. Our wedding showrounds very much feel like you have your own wedding planner on hand, they can signpost you to venue dressers and florists amongst other things. During these times, it’s important for you to feel as though you have somebody there to support you, which is what we offer when you book our venue for your special day.

Viewing a wedding venue during Covid-19

Credit: PB Artworks

Modern Ways Of Connecting Your Big Day

Viewing a wedding venue during a pandemic also means you might be thinking a little differently. We certainly hope that next year wedding celebrations will return to normal, but in case they don’t, our ‘Book with Confidence’ policy also includes us assisting you with virtual wedding streams should you wish to explore that avenue. Our newly installed superfast broadband and wifi means guests can join in via video link from their own homes, should restrictions still be in place or should this better suit (for example, if you have friends and family overseas). We’re all about modern ways of celebrating and sharing love and we want to give you as many options of possible at Combermere Abbey. You can speak to our wedding planning team about this service when you come to visit us for a venue showround.

Viewing a wedding venue during Covid-19

Credit: Saint Wedding Photography

Zoom Showrounds

Finally, for those who don’t wish to leave their home at the moment, or for those in areas with tighter restrictions, Zoom showrounds are absolutely an option at our wedding venue. We’re based on the Cheshire/Shropshire border, but thanks to modern technology, we can reach you anyway. Our couples are introduced to Combermere Abbey via a pre-recorded showround video, and if you wish to find out more you can be shown around our estate virtually by one of our wedding team. 2020 has seen us adapt to many new ways of doing things and viewing a wedding venue is no exception. To book a Zoom showround, please get in touch.

You can find all the latest updates on our social media, we’re on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Or, to speak to our wedding team directly and begin your Combermere Abbey journey, please send us a message or give us a call. You can also download a brochure by clicking here.