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Real Life Weddings at The Manor House

How did the proposal occur?

Emily: We met on Hinge when we both lived in London and had our first date at Greenwich Driving Range back in February 2018 – we thought an activity would be good in case the other person was boring. I was still at Medical School and Rob was working in the city. We accidently moved in together due to Covid when I got stuck at Rob’s place and started working out of there at the outbreak. I managed to then convince Rob to be the trailing spouse and he agreed to move to Bath by showing him a) how great the west country is and b) how great cider is.

Rob: I had initially planned to propose while hiking in New Zealand and designed the engagement ring for us to pick it up on our flight back home. Instead, I popped the question in our living room on the sofa. This was due to our friend Covid and tier 4 lockdown which resulted in me having to rush to collect the ring from a friend who picked it up for me. After getting it safely home, I was worried that I’d lose it and was rather excited that the plan was finally coming together after months, so I asked her 30 minutes later. It sounds a less romantic written down come to think of it but I did light some candles.

What did you love most about The Manor House?

I want to say everything – it feels that that’s a cop out but truly we love everything about The Manor House. It was the second wedding venue that we looked around, and from that moment we couldn’t get the place out of our head so that was decision made. We just kept comparing every other venue to The Manor House. The rooms are all so different and all so stunning, the grounds are beautiful and the house itself so full of character. A big thanks to Gareth for showing us around with a 2-meter gap.

The true thing that sets it apart from everywhere else is the people. Everyone who works at The Manor House has been outstanding, without exception. From the moment that we were shown around when the hotel was closed during Lockdown, to every back-and-forth email, to the attention to every detail on the day – everything has just been flawless and so much of that is down to the team that works there.

We have loved every moment of being there, taking any excuse in the planning process to visit just because we loved it so much (and have already booked a night for our Anniversary!)

Did you have a theme or particular style for your day?

Emily: No theme particularly, we did have an autumnal colour theme going on, with the gorgeous ivy on the front of The Manor House in October how could we not?! To make the day come to life, or rather make it ours, we tried to DIY the little touches ourselves. We made place names, menus and orders of service ourselves with seed paper, and I made the cake myself (many people said this was silly but it worked out). We also used the seed paper for the bingo cards for each table. They had fun facts about everyone on the table which we asked them to give us when they RSVP’d to encourage table conversation and had personalised Mr & Mrs Ward pencils to go with them.  

Rob: I suppose the Landy became a bit of a theme – and very popular too. It was my non-negotiable for the wedding that I wanted to hire and drive a Series 1 Land Rover, and it fitted in with The Manor House so well. After we had a look around the hotel back in April 2021, we saw an old Series Land Rover driving through the village and it felt like a sign!

Tell us about the outfits....

Emily: I did not have a clue what dress I wanted, but knew I wanted to get it from La Boutique in Exeter. It is a volunteer run charity which sells ex-model and ex-display wedding dresses, where all the money goes to The Wishing Well Foundation which pays for weddings for terminally ill women, how wholesome?! The dress itself was strapless which I did not see coming, but I loved it!

I had a separate outfit for the evening, an ivory jumpsuit from Rewritten with a jazzy belt – made for unrestricted dancing! And I got my shoes from Rainbow Club and had them dyed bright blue for a bit of jazziness too – I loved the pop of colour.

Rob: I wanted to keep a classic style and opted for a morning suit with a burgundy tie to match the bridesmaid dresses/ autumn leaves. All the groomsmen matched but to add some personal touches he got some ‘knot’ cufflinks and Land Rover socks.

What do you remember most about the day itself?

Rob: It is amazing having so many people you love all in one place at the same time all excited to see YOU. It’s strange seeing photos of people from vastly different areas of your life, together in one place.

Em: I have never had a day where I have felt so happy in all my life. My cheeks hurt from the amount of smiling; every moment of the day was just incredible. And as Rob said, looking around The Bybrook at the wedding breakfast and seeing everyone that is close to you there is so magical. We were so lucky with the weather, the hotel looked stunning as expected and the meal was amazing (honestly the number of comments we had about the food being amazing, it was truly next level).

Driving the Land Rover from the church, through Bath to Castle Combe was pretty magical – the number of waves and smiles we got was so lovely! Good job it wasn’t raining or that drive would have been a whole lot more difficult.

Were there any special moments or surprises on the big day?

Menu tasting was great fun as expected, everything was so tasty it was really difficulty choosing our final menu. Oh, and the Christmas drinks that we went to was great – the place looks spectacular when it’s all dressed up for Christmas!

I organised a flash-mob as part of our first dance which Rob wasn’t the keenest on initially, but it was great, got everyone on the dancefloor, and a total surprise to most of the guests (the ones not involved anyway!).

So many moments were elevated to a new level of special by the team looking after us during the day, we nearly cried at multiple points just because of how thoughtful they were and how special they made us feel. I mean, I had high expectations for the day after spending nearly 3 years planning, but all expectations were surpassed by a furlong and then some. Honestly, we’ll never forget any of it and can’t thank the team enough.

What tips or advice would you give future couples?

Take the full week off prior, especially if you’re planning the whole thing and making the cake like we were. We didn’t and it felt a bit more hectic than it could have been.

Only get a classic car if you’re happy to stress about it possibly not starting.

Spreadsheets are key (…says Rob the project manager).

Be clear with yourselves about the criteria you set regarding guest list because it can get tough!


And finally, remember to look up and look around – the day with go by so fast after so much planning, don’t forget to take it all in.

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