Planning SOS: The venue

The Old Kent Barn decorated for a wedding Credit: Olegs Samsonovs PhotographyWe chatted to Kylie Christie at The Old Kent Barn about wedding planning and choosing the perfect wedding venue.

We're engaged! Now what?
Start by researching venues. Many will have lots of information on their websites as well as pricing. Pick your favourites, arrange a tour of each to learn more about how your day will run, what's included and what ceremony choices you have. Check date availability: be prepared that your exact date may not be available, so being flexible will help in the early stages of your planning. Together you’ll  find a date that works for you. Starting your planning with your venue and date secured will help you plan the rest of your day.

What's the one question you get most commonly get asked and how do you respond?
What’s next after booking our venue?  A top tip is to start with the things you need, such as something to wear, rings, photography. Then the things you want – decorations, flowers, entertainment. This approach will help you prioritise your planning and budget.

How can we make our big day totally 'us'?
Think about what you'd really like for you day, from colours and styles to food, music and entertainment. You're planning a celebration of your marriage, so your family and friends will want you both to have the most special day and be there to help you celebrate and enjoy everything you’ve planned. Choosing things you both want will really make the day personal to you both.
What's your top planning tip when it comes to looking for and booking the venue?
Ask lots of questions and don’t rush the process. It’s ok to take some time to check you've asked everything you need to know. Sometimes you’ll know instantly that you’ve found the perfect place for you, and that's great. However, often you might want to really make sure you’ve explored all of your options before committing the one.  

When choosing your venue it’s really good to establish everything that is and isn’t included, what you can and can’t do, and who will be responsible for the running of your day. From setting everything up to ensuring the day runs smoothly and tidying everything away: these are key areas you’ll appreciate knowing are in hand. If these areas aren’t covered by your venue, consider enlisting a support team or an on-the-day wedding coordinator who is able to run the day for you, leaving family and friends free to enjoy the occasion and you present for all of the special moments.

Kylie Christie, The Old Kent Barn

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