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Finding the perfect wedding venue

Lorna Burhouse, diamond jewellery buyer at Beaverbrooks, is getting married and she's keeping us updated on her wedding-planning journey as she goes along...

They say that diamonds are a girl’s best friend and that’s certainly the case with bride-to-be Lorna. Responsible for buying all of Beaverbrooks’ diamond rings and jewellery, Lorna is getting married on Saturday 17th October 2015 to her fiancé Matt.

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In the run-up to her big day, Lorna will be sharing details of her wedding exclusively with You & Your Wedding readers, and once the happy couple says ‘I do!’ the new Mrs Haddon will share a selection of her favourite photos from their special day.

First up… finding the venue…

Lorna’s venue – Kilworth Country House, Leicestershire

Matt and I met six years ago when I was working in Leicestershire and we moved to Lytham St Anne’s when we joined Beaverbrooks in 2012. I’m Scottish and so getting married in my hometown was an option until my sister tied the knot earlier this year in St. Andrews and, not wanting to steal her limelight or have two Scottish weddings in the same year, we decided to look closer to where we live now.

We looked at various venues around the Fylde Coast, but didn’t find ‘the one’ and so we decided to search around Leicestershire where we met. 

It was actually Matt’s Mum who suggested we visit Kilworth House  because she loves their afternoon tea! So we checked it out on the internet and liking what we saw, quickly booked an appointment.

As we pulled into the driveway I was blown away and actually got butterflies – nervous and excited ones; the best kind.

We were given a grand tour of the beautiful 120 year-old country house and its expansive grounds. The venue also has its own outdoor theatre, and Matt and I kept grinning at each other excitedly. It was the breathtaking grade II star-listed Victorian orangery that really closed the deal for us – it was love at first sight!

Matt and I both said that we could picture friends and families sat in the orangery celebrating our big day with us, and I think that’s really important – if you feel like that about a venue then my advice would be to book it.

I’ve got five bridesmaids and we’re all staying at Kilworth House the night before the wedding with Mum and Dad, and then after we walk down the aisle as Mr and Mrs (eek!) we’ve booked a beautiful vintage car, called Eric – which is a 1963 Rover P4 Series 95 to drive us from the church to the venue.

After our wedding breakfast – stilton and red onion tart, followed by supreme of cod and banoffee pie for dessert – we plan on dancing the night away to our favourite soul/swing band. I’m counting down the days until our wedding and I already know that it’s going to be the best day of my life!

Lorna’s top tips… Booking a venue

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  • If your venue offers a menu tasting evening then definitely go – we went thinking we wanted beef and completely changed our minds after tasting the cod!
  • Establish what’s important to you as a couple – we wanted on-site accommodation and there are 40 bedrooms at Kilworth House
  • Be flexible with your dates – you can save money by booking your wedding on a weekday or low season
  • Be aware of hidden extra costs – don’t forget to read the fine print before signing on the dotted line
  • Do take advantage of word-of-mouth – it’s because of Matt’s mum’s afternoon tea recommendation that I’ve now got the venue of my dreams!