Wedding Venues I love!!
If you'd like to get to know some of the finest venues in The Cotswolds & Oxfordshire through the eyes of a photographer, read on...
Choosing the right wedding venue is the most time consuming part of your wedding planning and that’s only the beginning. Planning your wedding can take years and with so many different elements to pull together, it’s a full-on event, where do you start? I hope I can help...
I’m an Oxfordshire based wedding photographer and I’ve loved every wedding and every Bride & Groom I’ve had the pleasure to photograph
But here’s the thing, I’ve photographed weddings all over the UK from the incredibly stunning Lake District to fashionably striking London City centre (and many in between) so although every wedding is beautifully unique, the venues we have right here in Oxfordshire and the Cotswolds are simply magnificent! Why would I want to work anywhere else? Well, yes, okay so you might want to get married on a mountain top or have guaranteed blue skies with a destination beach wedding, who wouldn't?! - but for me, I’m looking to improve my carbon footprint by reducing my road miles and focussing on staying local!
I’ve created this directory to showcase some real stunners that are right on my doorstep. Some I’ve worked at, some I’m booked to cover next year (super excited!!) and some I’m hoping to get booked for because they make my heart tingle when I see them.
This page only highlights a handful of the gorgeous venues we have near us, so I will add to this guide as time goes on. So, without further ‘I do’s’ (d'you see what I did there?) let me introduce, in no particular order- Caswell House, Tythe Barn, Stratton Court Barn, Cogges Manor Farm, Worton Hall, Witney Lakes Resort.
An absolutely beautiful venue with an abundance of Cotswolds charm
As I strolled around some of the 300 acres of picturesque Cotswold countryside that make up the grounds of Caswell House, I was blown away by the amount of gorgeous photo opportunities around every corner. I’m quite glad I was discovering this beautiful place alone with my camera as every few steps I was quietly whispering ‘Wow! Wow! WOW!!!’. If you haven’t visited yet I highly recommend putting Caswell House on your short list for so many reasons. Oh did I mention there’s a moat?! How cool is that?!
As a wedding photographer I look at venues differently to a bride and groom. I’m sure you’re busy considering guest experience, eating, drinking and parting areas, accommodation and of course the feeling that it’s “the one.” As for me, I’m loving a venue that gives me light - when I say me, I obviously mean you, as I photograph the light that falls on you. And, I also fall in love with a venue with that all- important backdrop, Caswell House has that covered in abundance. At every twist and turn is a glorious photo opportunity and as this venue is offered exclusively to you, I don’t need to be on the lookout for photobombers as strangers trek past your party. There is so much to love about this historic place, the outdoor spaces include a moat, elegant walled gardens (I love a walled garden, always have! Gives me such a cosy feeling). You have access to the landscaped courtyards for your drinks reception, and the pretty gardens, bridges, pond, woodland and open countryside allow endless opportunities for your wedding photos.
If you are opting for an indoor ceremony, the barns are utterly charming and are the perfect, romantic setting to take your vows. Or enjoy an elegant outdoor ceremony in the summer months, exchanging rings under the ancient archway of the Loggia.
The accommodation for you and your guests is incredible! A real must see! – with a luxurious Honeymoon Suite awaiting the happy couple.
Living an eco conscious lifestyle and incorporating these values into my business is important to me. So after visiting this beautiful venue and realising we sing off the same song sheet I’m even more compelled to chorus their praises. With pure spring water from their own spring, underfloor heating from a wood pellet boiler, electricity from solar panels, and a reed bed filtration system, Caswell House are demonstrating an impressive commitment to lowering their carbon footprint. This beautiful, idyllic venue is a pure delight and with endless picturesque settings it’s a photographers dream and that makes it very easy to recommend.
It was an absolute pleasure taking pictures at Caswell House to add to my list of favourite local venues. Beautiful, idyllic and with very welcoming, friendly staff. To find out more, contact Kirsten Jones on 01993 701064 or email email@example.com and visit www.caswellhouse.co.uk
Relaxed, classy and with a dash of cool!
When I arrived at The Tythe Barn, the word that popped into my mind was - nice! I mean not just nice, but niiice! This place has an air of cool and after loving first impressions, I went on to love second, third, fourth and it just kept going... I was warmly welcomed by a very friendly member of staff and with the outdoor PA sound system playing I was instantly immersed into a relaxed vibe. The warmth of a traditional, historic setting sitting comfortably alongside state-of-the-art touches shows that Tythe Barn is a versatile venue - oh wait there’s more, if the ultimate grand entrance is your style... there’s even a helicopter landing site!
Your venue choice determines so much about how your day will look and feel and it’s undoubtedly one of the biggest decisions you’ll make as an engaged couple. With so many options from rustic barns, manor houses and festival tipis, it’s just a matter of finding “the one.” You’ll know when it’s right, it will tick all the boxes and the style will match your theme. But that’s not all, there’s also ambience to consider. And this is what I really loved about the Tythe Barn, there’s an intangible atmosphere which I can only put into words by saying I could have stayed there all day (and night - the Shepherds Hut is gorgeous!!)
Boasting two charming barns that are brimming full of character and oozing romance, The Tythe Barn is strikingly impressive even as a blank canvas. And if you choose an outdoor ceremony, your aisle walk is beneath the pretty wisteria clad pergola. Or if you’ve opted for a church wedding, the beautiful 12th century St Mary’s Church is accessed via a short stroll through The Tythe Barn gardens. So much versatility!!
And then there’s The Nook... brides leave reviews like “The Nook is an absolute triumph” and “it’s such a delight” etc etc. So I thought I’d add my review from a photographers perspective... “I have photographed brides-to-be with their bridesmaids in many different environments getting ready for their big day and it’s a very exciting time. Not just a time to apply make-up, but precious moments before an incredible event that will be remembered for a very long time. The Nook at Tythe Barn is not only comfortable, spacious and well equipped, it’s also an incredibly stylish and luxurious preparation area, creating the kind of photographic backdrop you’d expect to see in a glossy magazine. A beautiful and memorable haven.”
(Vicky Lewis, Wedding Photographer - 2020)
The Sweetest little find!... My eye is drawn down a path lined with birch trees to the cutest little love seat #photoopportunity. And then I find The Hut, quietly and unassumingly tucked away and nestled into a secluded corner is the most adorable Shepherds Hut. I couldn’t wait to get inside and see how such modest accommodation could lend itself to a honeymoon suite and boy - was I pleasantly surprised. This isn’t just cute, cosy and comfortable, it’s also packed full of creature comforts, designed with careful consideration to satisfy the desires of modern living. A wood burning stove, under-floor heating, fitted kitchen, en-suite bathroom and a comfortable double bed. There’s quality touches everywhere, the bed linen, luxuriously soft towels and beautifully scented soaps and shampoos and cosy sheepskin rugs for underfoot, the list goes on. It’s very well thought through, there is a place for everything and everything has its place - there’s even a special place to put your wedding dress / groom's suit!
I’m always delighted when I read that a venue is making every effort to reduce their carbon footprint. And Tythe Barn are certainly doing their share in a number of ways including reducing, reusing and recycling. I love it that the food is locally sourced, keeping down fuel costs as well as supporting local suppliers. Meat from the family farm is incorporated into the menus and mint for ‘Pimms’ is collected from their own herb garden. Along with other conscious decisions they are certainly taking a responsible approach to help save our environment. And all this is done whilst still maintaining all the cool and class that are at the core of this venue.
Tythe Barn made me feel extremely welcome and I’m super excited that I’ll be back there in 2021 to photograph lovely couples celebrating their dream wedding. If you would like to visit a stylish venue that perfectly combines Vintage with Contemporary contact Marie Thompson on 01869 321442 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and visit www.thetythebarn.co.uk
stratton court barn
Intimate and magical just like a fairy-tale
Driving through the main gates, I immediately appreciate why Stratton Court Barn is such a popular wedding venue. The beautiful tree-lined drive, flanked on both sides by an expanse of open countryside is an impressive welcome. As the venue gradually reveals itself, first the delightful courtyard, enclosed and sheltered and then the barns with their huge glass double doors - I’m truly charmed. There’s an abundance of space and yet it feels warm and inviting. Effortlessly stunning and everything you would hope for from an idyllic venue in the North Oxfordshire countryside.
Looking for the perfect venue can become overwhelming, so I recommend doing your homework right from the start. A venue can WOW you on sight, giving you all the feels, but you should read the reviews and be prepared to revisit at different times, even the evening. A good place to start your research is where you want to end up, that sounds a bit cookie right? Close your eyes and daydream. How does your perfect wedding day look? If you see a beach wedding, start there as your benchmark then visit some alternatives. This will either tell you that your sandy toes wedding is exactly what you want or you’ll realise that a cider and straw bales wedding is actually more you.
Set within 50 acres of private land, Stratton Court Barn is surrounded by an incredible expanse of beautiful Oxfordshire countryside with straw bales and 5 star reviews aplenty. Let me show you more...
There’s a lot to be said for an abundance of ravingly good reviews from the couples who have previously chosen Stratton Court Barn for their day. And with so many, highly flattering 5 stars, it’s no wonder the team at Stratton Court don’t feel the need to shout their own praises. That’s not really their style anyway. Karin, the on-site Wedding Coordinator, is very cheerful, calm and friendly and with a totally ‘can do’ attitude that instantly puts you at ease.
Whether you’ve chosen to take your vows in the light and airy barn or the picturesque courtyard framed by the barn doors, your aisle walk will be equally beautiful.
If you have done your homework and researched some of the many reasons you might come to choose Stratton Court Barn as your wedding venue, the pretty backdrops and dedicated, friendly wedding team should definitely get a big tick on your list. I have spent several days working here and it always seems to be bright and sunny with clear blue skies (I’m lucky like that!) and I can tell you with confidence that there’s an abundance of photo opportunities. You can wander along woodland paths bathed in dappled sunlight and relax in quaint flower gardens, there’s rustic old stone buildings, wood fronted barns and the most gorgeous courtyard all surrounded by beautiful countryside. And if you’re lucky enough you might even get a picture perfect sunset over the fields.
With a dedicated in-house wedding coordinator your day is set to run as smooth as silk. For more info contact Karin on 01869 278899 or email email@example.com and visit https://www.strattoncourtbarn.co.uk
cogges manor farm
Idyllic, unique and brimming with rustic charm!
If rural - yet practically town centre is one of your criteria then you have stumbled across a real gem at Cogges Manor Farm. Nestled in a beautiful patch of West Oxfordshire countryside you are only a few minutes walk from Witney’s Woolgate centre. And I love it for so many reasons. Cogges Manor Farm is an incredible venue with the most relaxed and flexible options available to you. With everything from from stunning walled gardens, an orchard and even farm animals to include in your photos. This venue is totally unique and utterly charming! No wonder it was used as a filming location in the famous Downton Abbey.
Choosing the right venue is very personal to each couple so if you are looking for somewhere that is totally open to whatever your style is then you need to pay Cogges a visit. The decor is left to your imagination and pretty much anything is possible. You can DIY to your hearts content or bring in venue enhancing suppliers to zhoosh up and get the exact feel you’re dreaming of. You will cherish your wedding day memories every time you recall your bouquet, the speeches, your family and friends smiling as the confetti fills the air with colour around you. And this will be enhanced more so by a venue that fills you with joy. Cogges Manor Farm is a truly joyful barn venue which is so unique and idyllic that you and all who celebrate with you will remember your day for a very long time.