Exclusive Dartmoor Weddings & Seasonal Events - Coombe Trenchard

Exclusive Country House Weddings & Events to Celebrate the Season

Freckle Photography

Coombe Trenchard's Top Tips for Wedding Planning Joy

WeddingsSarah MarshComment

The New Year heralds a fresh wave of excitement for our 2017 brides, this is *the* year and with it the to-do list grows longer and thoughts turn increasingly to time frames and making sure all wedmin tasks are completed in time for the Big Day.

Ensuring optimum enjoyment throughout this process should be the goal, it is a completely unique time in your life and story as a couple and something you will look back on fondly in years to come. It is also a time that can feel pressurised and stressful, so we thought we’d give you all a New Year reminder on how to manage that wedding task list, and more importantly have fun doing it!

1. Involve those you love

This is such a huge one. Plan ‘wedding dates’ with your fiancé and sit down to make decisions at your favourite restaurant, or construct wedding signage whilst listening to your favourite album together. Look upon the whole process as memory-making gold, not just the wedding day itself. Take your parents to meetings and involve them, ask siblings to help you shop for last minute decorations or get the whole family round to become a production line for your favours. Those close to you will be incredibly excited for your nuptials and letting them be involved benefits everyone. Delegation is key; make the most of the people in your life and enjoy having an excuse to spend more time together.

2. Write it down

Sometimes all of those light bulb moments, forgotten emails and vague ideas of bouquets can make your head a frantic place to be. Invest in some lovely new stationery and ensure you keep a track of your thoughts and tasks to complete in an organised and clear way. Set aside an evening to go through your emails and to-do lists and streamline them into something legible and straightforward, you’ll feel happier seeing everything written down and ready to get ticked off. Pop a notepad in your bag and jot down thoughts or ideas as you have them, its best to get pen to paper for ultimate calmness.


3. Approach Things Logically and Realistically

From these lists you can work methodically and logically through the wedmin. Be realistic about what you can achieve and when, if you won’t have time then put it to one side or re-arrange other tasks. Over-stretching yourself will not lead to bridal bliss or a relaxed wedding day. There are an infinite amount of components to a wedding, so it’s best to prioritise which key elements are important to you and your partner. Set yourself goals and break down the large amount of things to sort out into manageable chunks, tackling one at a time until it is ticked off.


4. Enjoy The Freedom and Have Fun With It

Instead of feeling pressure to conform to certain aspects of a wedding, energise and inspire yourself with the knowledge that your day can be whatever you want it to be. Think back over your relationship and tie in special memories and places, project your personalities and have fun with the details that will make your wedding unique to you and your fiancé.


5.Ask for Help if You Need It

Realise when you need some advice or help and don’t be shy to ask for it! Here at Coombe Trenchard, we love to be involved every step of your planning journey and can advise on suppliers, use of our space and most things to do with wedding preparation (we have been involved in quite a few after all!). Reach out and be rewarded with peace of mind, whether from ourselves, suppliers, friends and family or your fiancé, you don’t have to do this alone.


Lucy Wallace Photography

6.Switch Off

As exciting as planning a wedding is, you also need to ensure you switch of from it once in a while! Holding onto your sanity, your life balance and making sure that your wedding doesn’t become a chore relies on taking time to think about other plans and switching your bridal brain off. If you’re finding it hard to take a break, pamper yourself, book a massage or simply have a long bath and read a book, headspace and perspective is so important.

7.Remember Why You Getting Married

Don’t let your wedding day consume you: remember that you are making a commitment to someone to build a happy marriage together and professing your love in front of the people that adore you. Your guests won’t care about the details, or your exact heel height, they will only feel your happiness, so stay calm and enjoy such a joyous time in your life.


Wishing you all happy planning and relaxing switched-off moments for 2017 (and don’t forget that we are here to help!).

The Legal Bit!

WeddingsSarah MarshComment


The Legal Bit – A Helpful Guide for Booking Your Ceremony


The concept of getting married means different things to different people. It could conjure images of a traditional white wedding, a hand fasting, or a quiet elopement. The beauty of the wedding industry at the moment is that being individual and personal within your celebration is encouraged; your day can fit the nature of your relationship in all of its unique glory. At the heart of these exciting choices and decisions lies the important part: the legal bit. We feel it’s of utmost importance to advise happy couples exactly what they need to do to ensure smooth sailing into wedded bliss, and thought an update on the blog (to be enjoyed with a cup of tea) could be just the ticket. 

Freckle Photography

In the UK, you need to adhere to the following criteria to get hitched:

  • Be over 16 years of age (permission from parents or guardians needed if under 18)
  • Free to marry or form a civil partnership (single, divorced, widowed)
  • Not closely related

Those boxes ticked, you then need to decide where it is you wish to do the deed. Choose a civil service in a licensed location or if wanting a religious aspect, a church wedding. Both involve giving notice, and require thought as to how you would like your union to be celebrated. Coombe Trenchard offers the best of both worlds; we have 12 separate licenced areas in which you can choose a registrar to legally marry you, but we are also within walking distance of the beautiful Church of St Peter on the neighbouring Lewtrenchard estate. For further information on marrying within a church, see this page on religious ceremonies

Freckle Photography

Most of our couples choose to marry within our home and grounds and we have to stress that the venue cannot be involved with organising the registrar’s attendance or its associated legalities. We strongly advise that once you have booked your date with ourselves, that you contact Devon Registrars to make a provisional booking and pay a £50.00 deposit. This can save disappointment and timeline concerns as the ceremony slots are allocated on a first come, first serve basis and we have known disappointed couples who have had to hold their ceremony much earlier or later that they had planned. You can find out more about the cost involved here.

Once this has been booked with Devon Registrars, you will need to book an appointment to give notice at your local registry office at least 28 days before you intend to tie the knot. Once the year countdown mark has passed, you can attend an appointment and its best to do this as soon as you can. You will need to take proof of your name, age and nationality (your best bet is a passport or birth certificate) and proof of address (driving licence, council tax or recent utility bill). You will each need to pay a £35.00 registry fee to give notice.  If you have been divorced or widowed you will also need to take a decree absolute or a death certificate to prove your freedom to marry once more. The appointment is fairly straightforward and your notice to marry will be publicly displayed for 28 days, after which time the marriage may take place. 

You will need to pay the final balance of your registrar fees at least 12 weeks before your ceremony and then get to excitedly fill out a preference form, giving information about your readings, music choices, witnesses (you will need to select two) and personalised vows if applicable. (Top Tip: Order a few marriage certificates; you’ll need them for name changes etc.). There can be no religious connotations to a service conducted by a registrar, either within the readings or song choices. 

Then, when the Big Day arrives two registrars will attend Coombe Trenchard. In the half hour before your ceremony they will conduct separate interviews with each of you to confirm you are who you say you are and go over what is about to happen. These lovely people will then have the pleasure of conducting your ceremony, pronouncing you legally wed and handing over your marriage certificates. What a feeling!

Freckle Photography

Freckle Photography

If the restrictions of a ceremony conducted by a registrar don’t feel suited to the celebration you are planning, we highly recommend the use of Cornish Celebrants to create a bespoke and unique service for you. The legal service can take place at a Registry office on the same or a different day, and you are then free to celebrate within any area of Coombe Trenchard, using your own meaningful words and traditions. 

You can find our more by contacting the Devon Registration Service, browsing the government requirements and printing this handy guide.  

Happy Planning!