You've made a great choice to get married in West Sussex. Long gone are the days of flimsy party tents and tacky decorations - these days, marquees are a seriously stylish wedding venue option. They can hold any sized wedding, from a small family gathering to huge receptions of over 500 guests.
If you're hoping to have a small, intimate ceremony in your chosen venue in West Sussex but wish to invite lots more guests for the reception, marquee venues are ideal for you, as lots of smaller venues tend to offer space for a marquee reception outside. It may be that your venue has a permanent marquee on their grounds, or there’s simply space for you to choose your own to hire. In this case, you’ll have plenty of options to choose from in West Sussex. Will you hire a classic English marquee with roll up sides, or maybe a festival-style yurt or tipi? Most marquees are a blank canvas so you are able to add your own personal touches to it, including the flooring, colour scheme and choice of dance floor.
If you're thinking about having your wedding at a venue with a marquee in West Sussex, they're perfect for you if:
- You want a big space for lots of wedding guests
- You want to marry in a outdoor space, such as a garden or woodland
- You require a venue where you can add your personality and decorated it how you wish
- You'd like to have a small ceremony but a large celebration for your wedding reception
Frequently Asked Questions - Marquee Weddings
Will my wedding venue put up my marquee for me?
Please speak to your chosen venue about what they include in the price of hiring their 'marquee wedding venue.' In some cases, the venue will only charge you for the hire of the grounds, and then you’ll have to arrange the marquee separately with a marquee hire company. Check with your wedding venue to see if they have any recommended marquee suppliers that you have to use before looking into your own.
In other cases, your wedding venue in West Sussex may have a permanent marquee in the grounds, or one that is in use throughout the summer month, for example. This may be a simpler choice if you don’t want to arrange your wedding marquee directly.
Make sure you’re clear as to the costs of your marquee hire and any set up fees before you sign your venue hire contract to avoid confusion and unexpected costs later down the line!
Am I able to have my wedding in a marquee in winter?
Definitely! If you provide a little extra heating and don't mind not being able to roll up the sides, a marquee is perfect for a winter wedding! The difference is that you won’t be able to roll the sides of the tent up (which is generally an option in the warmer months), and that you’ll have to provide extra heating for your guests to keep your marquee warm. Getting married at a marquee wedding venue in winter gives you the option to decorate it how you wish and make it as wintery as possible. Adding fair lights and lanterns is one of many ideas.
What options do I have if the weather's bad on the day?
Most marquees in West Sussex should be able to withstand wind and rain. If the weather is forecast to be too bad for a marquee wedding (could be a storm), you will want to have a backup plan, which could be an indoor space to get married. Discuss your wet weather plan with your wedding venue to ensure you’re prepared for any poor weather conditions.
Can we have a civil ceremony in a marquee in West Sussex?
The law states that civil ceremonies must take place in a permanent and fixed structure in order to be legally binding. Unfortunately, this tends to rule out marquees, even ones that are set up all year round. One way to get around this is to have your ceremony over the threshold of a doorway. This way, your guests can be seated in the marquee while you are technically indoors. Another option you have is to have the wedding reception in the marquee after having your main ceremony in a nearby church or a room in the main venue.
What’s the best way to decorate a marquee?
Marquees are usually a completely blank canvas, which is great for couples who would like to add their personal touch. Hanging decorations such as lanterns and bunting are a great option. Lighting options such as fairy lights and chandeliers can also help set the mood for your evening reception. To fill up the space in a marquee, you should opt for taller centre pieces to fill up the empty space as the ceiling in marquees are very high.
There's lots of marquee wedding venues to choose from in West Sussex and you'll find the top ones on Guides for Brides.