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Wedding FAQs


Please find below a list of answers to questions we are often asked about Weddings at The Orangery Suite and Gardens:

  • Do you offer exclusive use of The Orangery Suite and Gardens?
    Yes. The Orangery and walled garden are not open to the public so you will have exclusive use of the venue for your wedding.
  • Is The Orangery Suite licensed for wedding ceremonies?
    Yes, The Orangery has a licence from BCP Council for marriages and civil partnerships. A fee for the Registrar is payable directly to BCP Council.
  • Can we get married outside?
    Yes, we are licensed for outdoor ceremonies. Our wooden gazebo within the walled garden is licensed, with white chairs set up on the lawn in front of it. Most of the ceremony will be conducted in front of the gazebo, but you will step inside the structure with the Registrar and witnesses for the 'legal' bits - the vows and signing the Register. The orangery also offers sunken garden ceremony set up with seating available for up to 45 guests.
  • How many people can The Orangery accommodate for ceremonies?
    The Orangery Suite room can seat up to 75 people including the bride and groom, plus the two Registrars. For indoor ceremonies, this number can be increased to around 80, with a few standing at the back of the room or young children on parent's laps. Outdoor ceremonies can seat the same number as above with plenty of space for extra-standing guests if required.
  • If we choose to have the ceremony outside, what if it rains?"
    If the weather forecast is not good enough for an outdoor ceremony (ie, rain, storms etc), we advise you to set up in The Orangery Room for your ceremony. Ultimately the location of your ceremony is your choice however decision must be made the day before the wedding to ensure the smooth running of your day. If high winds are predicted, we may have to override your preference and host the ceremony in the Orangery Suite Room. The registrars do have the right to refuse outdoor set up should the weather forecast rain or storms.
  • Is there a minimum number for weddings?
    There is no minimum number of guests for ceremonies and receptions.
  • Can we get married on any day of the week?
    Yes, The Orangery Suite is available for hire on any day of the week.
  • Can we have chair covers?
    Chair covers and sashes for The Orangery and marquee furniture can be hired in from your preferred stylist or wedding coordinator. We have some great recommendations for these on our suppliers section of the website.
  • Can we have the reception meal at The Orangery Suite?
    Yes, our marquee, which is included in the venue hire price, can seat up to 85 people, depending on the set-up Catering is booked externally via our recommended caterers.
  • Is furniture in the marquee included?
    White limewash Chivari chairs with ivory seat pads, round and rectangular tables, a cake table and white linen tablecloths are included in the venue hire price. We can also provide up to 6 children's high chairs.
  • Is heating provided in the marquee?
    Heating can be hired for an additional fee. Heating for Winter weddings is included in the price. The Marquee is lit with festoon lights for evening bookings.
  • Are discos/Djs/bands allowed?
    As of 2023 discos and live bands are now permitted at the venue. These can be set up in the Orangery Suite Room for your evening function. Please see our Suppliers page for some entertainment suggestions.
  • Is background music ok?
    Yes, we have a music system and speakers in The Orangery for the ceremony music, or a portable speaker for outdoor ceremonies. We can also provide a bluetooth speaker for background music in the marquee. There are also speakers on The Orangery terrace for background music. live music, harps, string quartets and other live performers are also welcome as background music. We have 2 separate speaker systems in the Marquee & Orangery/Terrace. - We can stream music via Bluetooth from your device or a USB (usb MP3 tracks only and not stored in files) - We can play a generic playlist in the Orangery/Terrace area if preferred.
  • What type of catering can we have?
    We have some excellent recommended local caterers that can provide whatever type of catering you require - traditional wedding breakfast, buffet, barbecue, hog roast or cream tea PLUS many more options. Our recommended catering companies have worked alongside the Orangery Suite Gardens for many events and are well-established in the industry. Depending on your choice of caterer they can serve reception drinks, top up glasses and pour champagne for the toast. Most menus cater for all dietary requirements and include different levels of service including table waiting, canapés, hot and cold finger, or fork buffets, seated two, three and four-course meals, hog roasts and BBQs. If a caterer other than one of our recommended caterers is used, there is a supplementary fee of £175. Please be aware: The entrance width to The Orangery Suite may hinder some food trucks etc. An alternative would be to set up at the entrance gate. Please see our Suppliers page for further details.
  • Can we supply our own catering or caterer?
    Yes - we do make a supplementary fee if a caterer other than one of our recommended ones is used. They would have access to our kitchen.
  • Can we provide our own drinks?
    You may supply reception drinks for your tables. They can be chilled in our fridge before the meal. We don't charge corkage, but a service charge may apply, depending on your preferred caterer. We don’t charge corkage for your reception and welcome you to bring up to 3 bottles of wine or bubbly per table. ­­­ The Orangery Suite offers post-ceremony Prosecco, non-alcoholic Prosecco, Beer, Cider Pimm’s & juice packages available to pre-order as found on your preference form. Drinks will be prepared and displayed in the terrace summer house, ready for your guests after your ceremony as required. Unfortunately, we can't serve or refill your post-ceremony drinks due to the small team. Your chosen caterer may offer a drinks waiter service, or you may wish to book a wedding coordinator who can assist with this. We request no beers or spirits are to be supplied to your guests. These are available at our fully stocked and staffed bar.
  • Is there a bar?
    Yes, we can provide a staffed bar for guests to purchase wine, beers, spirits and soft drinks for a small additional charge.
  • Do you offer all-inclusive packages?
    No - we offer an exclusive venue that can be tailored to your individual requirements.
  • Do you offer discounts for weekday weddings?
    Yes - the venue hire is cheaper on Fridays and Sundays and cheaper still on Mondays to Thursdays during the Spring & Summer months.
  • How much is the deposit?
    We ask for a £800 non-refundable deposit to confirm the booking. The final balance is due one calendar month before the wedding date.
  • Do you supply equipment for all the games and activities?
    The grounds include croquet, crazy golf, beach volleyball, badminton, giant chess, petanque, basketball and table tennis - we supply all the equipment for these games; we also provide outdoor table football, giant connect four and a giant tumble tower.
  • Can we hire other things?
    Ice cream bicycles, sweet carts, bouncy castles, photo booths, casinos and vintage crockery can all be arranged. Please see our Suppliers page for ideas. There is no supplementary charge for any hired equipment or entertainment arranged for any event.
  • Can you recommend a photographer?
    There is a list of photographers and other suppliers that have worked at The Orangery Suite on the Suppliers page.
  • Do you have an easel we can use?
    Yes, we can provide an easel for the table plan
  • Is confetti allowed?
    Sorry, no, we don't allow confetti including table confetti, fireworks, hay bales or Chinese lanterns. Bubbles make a good alternative to confetti.
  • Is there somewhere we can change and store items?
    The Dorset Room can be hired to store belongings.
  • Can we decorate the marquee?
    The marquee has an ivory roof lining, valances and swags - you are welcome to add styling of your choice as long as the marquee is not damaged in any way. We can't allow any styling equipment to pierce the marquee lining or damage the integrity of the structure etc.
  • When can we set up prior to the wedding?
    You will have access to The Orangery and marquee from 8am on the wedding day.
  • Is there accommodation at The Orangery?
    Sorry, no - please see our Suppliers page for local accommodation.
  • Is there car parking at The Orangery Suite?
    There is ample free car parking. Buses and coaches are fine.
  • Can we arrange a viewing?
    Please contact us to book a date and time to have a look at The Orangery Suite and Gardens.
  • How does the Ceremony work?
    The Orangery Suite team will coordinate the ceremony with you. We will ensure you are well looked after every step along the way. If you and your partner don't wish to be seen by each other before the start of the ceremony, as is tradition, then we advise you to stagger your arrival times slightly. - When the registrars arrive, they will speak to one-half of the couple in the Orangery Suite room. - We will let the registrar know when the bridal party arrives. They will then meet you in the Dorset room for a quick chat. - We can direct your guests to their seating or if preferred you can allocate groomsmen/nominated guests to ensure everyone is seated in good time. - When you are all set, one of the team will collect you from the Dorset room and walk you towards your ceremony. - We will take care of all the Ceremony music that has been prepped and downloaded as specified your preference information. - We will give the thumbs up to your registers and start the entrance music. (This is a guideline – If you wish to alter the format, we will work with you and follow your lead.) Guidelines from your registrars: Ceremony start times for the registrars are tight and your chosen start time should be adhered to as promptly as possible. They do have the right to refuse if guests or either party are not ready at the specified time.
  • What are the steps to book our date at your venue?
    All bookings at the Orangery Suite will be secured with a non-returnable deposit. If you choose to hold your ceremony at The Orangery Suite You will need to book your slot with Poole Registrars to arrange dates, details and timing for your ceremony, generally up to 1 year prior to your booking with us. If you are looking for an informal ceremony, celebrant or blessing we advise you to make sure they are available on your date.
  • What time does the ceremony start?
    The Orangery Suite has no restrictions on ceremony times. This can be decided between you and the registrars.
  • Do you provide catering?
    We don't currently offer catering direct from the venue. Catering can be booked and arranged by you through our highly recommended caterers. Our recommended catering companies have worked alongside the Orangery Suite Gardens for many events over the years. Depending on your choice of caterer they can serve reception drinks, top up glasses and pour champagne for the toast. Most menus cater for all dietary requirements and include different levels of service including canapés, hot and cold finger, or fork buffets, seated two, three and four-course meals, hog roasts and BBQs. Molecular Magic Claret Catering (contact email only for now) Dine Divine Fired Up Barbecue Specialists Sorrels Professional Caterers Sweet As A Nut Catering Vintage High Tea If a caterer other than one of our recommended caterers is used, there is a supplementary fee. Please refer to the tariff. Please be aware the entrance width to The Orangery Suite may hinder some food trucks etc. An alternative would be to set up at the entrance gate.
  • What happens for the evening function?
    You have complete freedom for your evening function that will be held in the Orangery Suite Room. The Orangery is a lovely space for your evening function and will host any DJs or music you may wish to hire in. If you are having evening entertainment, they are welcome to visit the venue to locate the best spot for setting up. Please verify with your chosen suppliers that they can set up any equipment needed for your evening function, if you wish to hire a dance floor you can request them to move tables to create more space.
  • How many guests can attend the evening?
    Spring & Summer bookings: You can invite a further 35 guests for your evening allowing up to 120 people in total at the Orangery Suite venue. Winter Bookings, 1st October - 1st March: 50 guests are advised for a Winter booking. If you have a few extra guests you wish to invite for your evening this can be considered. (Maximum is 60 people, including the married couple, for an evening function on Winter bookings.)
  • What time does the venue close?
    Venue Close: (Licensing agreement) Monday – Sunday: - Music/DJ set finished by 10:00 pm. - Last order at the bar is 10:30 pm. - Carriages are at 11:00 pm sharp. We ask your DJ or band to play their last track at 10:00 pm. Please make them aware of this. An ambient playlist will continue in the Orangery room and terrace until the venue closes at 11:00 pm.
  • Are Children Allowed?
    Children at your wedding Children have a lovely time at The Orangery Suite with plenty of activities and games to keep guests of all ages entertained. While our venue is safe and secure, children should be supervised at all times. If you wish to enjoy your day off duty, we have a recommended team of nannies that will take care of your little ones throughout your time with us. Please contact Katherine at The I Do Nanny for more information.
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