I’m a loyal person, I always have been and with most things in our wedding the first people / things we’ve seen are what we’ve gone with.
When it came to our wedding venue, I did a lot of research but it’s very hard to work out what’s right for you as most places don’t put their prices online & having a tiny baby, I didn’t fancy going to check out just any old place!
Ever since I can remember, I’ve wanted to get married at the church in Penshurst and then have the reception at Penshurst Place but we decided very quickly this wasn’t an option. We’re not millionaires (unfortunately!) so here I was, Googling, trying to find something that lived up to what I’d built up in my mind but wouldn’t break the bank. I saw one or two places online & really liked the idea of Blackstock Country Estate – a little farm, two gorgeous barns, a climbing frame and llamas! but it seemed like too big a leap from Penshurst Place, so we decided to go and see Chiddingstone Castle.
Chiddingstone Castle is gorgeous (although maybe more so on the outside than on the inside.. see below). I think we’d decided to go for it before we even got there. Who doesn’t want to get married at a castle? I had visions of grandeur! But whilst looking around I had a funny feeling. The outside is perfect.. a stunning castle, in stunning grounds with a gorgeous orangerie to get married in iiiif you’re getting married in Summer. But we’re not. We’re getting married in November. Even so, I wanted to see inside & I was (probably unpleasantly) surprised. Dreams of a burgundy and champagne wedding were quickly pushed from my mind as we were shown around and saw A LOT of teal. I convinced myself the outdated decor and dark wood was all part of what I wanted because, hey, I’m a loyal person – and we put down our names to reserve the date. Great. A vision of our wedding was starting to form in my head – a much more neutral colour scheme with lots of bling, where would we begin?
A few weeks on we received an email from Chiddingstone that made us rethink our decision (and trust me, this takes some doing once I’ve got an idea in my head!) It was very rude, with no “hello, how are you? just wondering why you hadn’t been in touch?” It just got straight to the point. “As we haven’t heard from you, I’m removing your reservation” of course I panicked. What did they mean? As far as I was aware we’d reserved first refusal of the date with no time restraint. I think it was a misunderstanding on both parts but the way they handled it was not what you’d want for your wedding venue and so we looked for somewhere else. You have to work with your venue so closely when organising a wedding and if they were going to treat us like this, I wanted to go elsewhere.
Looking online again I found two places I wanted to see but Blackstock kept catching my eye and so I arranged for us to see it as soon as possible. (It may have been 18 months before we wanted to get married but I’d finally managed to get Seb to agree to November so I wanted to get something booked in before he changed his mind 😉 )
Ever since our first steps into Blackstock Country Estate we knew it was the one. Andre and the team have been so welcoming – every time we visit (and that’s been about 5 times now… ooops.. ) we feel so looked after and every little question we have is answered like it’s no trouble at all. And to top it all off, it’s gorgeous. When it’s all decked out for a wedding, it sends shivers down my spine. The good thing about a barn is that you can really make it your own (and cover it in fairy lights… not giving anything else away here!!) I wish I could go back there every single day. (Although maybe then it wouldn’t be so special!)
When I think about how different our whole wedding would be if we were getting married at Chiddingstone, even down to the colour theme and my dress & I think about how perfect everything seems now it’s coming together, I realise that everything happens for a reason and I’m so pleased we found Blackstock. I feel exactly how I should feel about our wedding day, absolutely giddy with excitement! (I know I say this all the time but..) Can we get married now please??
This is how excited we are about getting married at this place!
Love, Anna xox
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