Dream weddings don’t have to break the bank!

Emily and Daniel's wedding

Emily (27) and Daniel (25) tied the knot at The Gilstrap in Newark last year. This grand but affordable venue saved them thousands of pounds and gave them the wedding of their dreams.

Nestled within the grounds of Newark Castle, the romantic Gilstrap was the setting for the couple’s wedding in front of close family and friends. With two young children to look after, cost was crucial for the couple when they were planning their big day.

Following a surprise proposal, Emily and Daniel set their heart on marrying within the next year. Emily looked at registry offices over other venues to keep costs down, and as soon as she saw the Grade II listed Gilstrap set within impressive grounds and with stunning views, she knew this was the perfect place for her and Daniel to be married.

As Emily explained, “When you say registry office, a lot of people don’t realise how much they have changed nowadays; it wasn’t old fashioned or dated, it was lovely. I was amazed that The Gilstrap was a registry office, it has beautiful gardens and I just thought the overall place was outstanding.”

The couple spent just over £3,500 on their wedding, which included everything they needed to make their day special. With the average wedding costing £21,000 these days, Emily and Daniel managed to organise and celebrate at a fraction of this price, showing it can be done affordably and without having to compromise. Family and friends helped to make some of the day’s key features including flowers, favours and the all-important wedding cake, which was made by Emily’s Nan. By thinking about how they planned and spent their budget for the wedding, the couple not only saved money, but it allowed them to focus on the meaning of the day. Emily said: “You can get caught up in the moment when planning a wedding and it’s easy to get carried away. This can sometimes take away from what the day is truly about, like the commitment to each other, the vows and ceremony”.

By staying local the couple also knew that the friends and family they wanted to help them celebrate their special day would be able to attend. “We had considered doing something different, such as going abroad, but financially it wasn’t realistic for us, family or friends,” explained Emily.

After recently celebrating their first wedding anniversary, the couple reflect on their wedding day and their overall experience of The Gilstrap. Emily said: “The venue is definitely good value for money and everything was perfect on the day, it all ran smoothly and the staff were really helpful, we couldn’t have wanted anything more.” The only part of the day that they would have changed was the weather: “It was really cold! Posing for the pictures we had to pretend it wasn’t too bad, but that’s the British weather for you!” added Emily.

The Gilstrap has recently been refurbished to an impressive standard. The venue boasts two luxury ceremony rooms, the prestigious, generously sized Salvin Suite which seats up to 100 and the more intimate Library Room, with seating for 20. The grounds are equally impressive and guests can move to the Victorian ornamental gardens and enjoy views of the castle to capture those perfect photos. You can find out first-hand all The Gilstrap has to offer, as well as local wedding suppliers who can help you with any aspect of your big day at The Gilstrap Wedding Fayre at the venue on 19 October 2016.

Hundreds of couples tie the knot in Nottinghamshire every year. Many are residents but some live further afield and are looking for a beautiful, affordable location which is convenient for guests travelling from around the UK.

Take a look at our wedding destinations and see how we can help you celebrate in style. To find out more visit celebrateinnottinghamshire.co.uk

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