Five minutes with...Saban Demirbasa, Stone Court House

Having recently thrown open its doors to weddings, Stone Court House in Maidstone is one of Kent's newest venues and will be taking bookings from May, 2023. Itching to know more, we chatted to owner Saban Demirbasa.

Tell us about the history of Stone Court House.
Stone Court House is Grade II listed with both national and historical importance, and early records confirm that the building was the private residence of Lady Margaret Sackville (1562-1591) of Knole House, Sevenoaks, one of the top five National Trust properties in the country. Thereafter, it became the Crown Judges lodgings until the 1960s. In more recent times it sadly fell into disrepair until we purchased the property
in 2019.

We understand there’s been extensive renovations going on. Can you tell us more about that?
We spent three years restoring Stone Court House, investing millions in the process. Only historical and natural building materials were used, such as sheep wool insulation, 45 tons of horsehair lime plaster, oak, wool carpets and water-based paints. Historic England officially removed Stone Court House from the Risk Register in November 2022, and we were shortlisted for the Historic Building Restoration Awards 2022.

Stone Court House dining area Credit: Peggy Pollock

What’s your favourite part of the venue?
All of it! It’s a truly beautiful and unique place, pictures don’t do it justice, and we’ve been told by numerous guests that it’s like staying overnight in a museum. When the lights go down its wonderfully atmospheric.

What’re you most looking forward to about hosting weddings?
Happy guests who’ll keep memories of our home for a lifetime. We live here in our very own private quarters, it’s our family home. We ask our guests to take off their shoes and walk around on the 100 per cent wool carpets, making themselves at home. We even see guests coming downstairs in their nightwear! It’s very comfortable and private, quiet for it’s town centre location and we’re not open to the general public. We’re able to accommodate a maximum of 18 guests ensuring they have plenty of room.

Check out www.stonecourthouse.com

Bride coming down the stairs into ornate hallway at stone court house Credit: Peggy Pollock

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