Cost saving tips from the Rockbeare Manor team

The team here at Rockbeare Manor, our stunning wedding venue near Exeter in Devon, have helped lots and lots of couples to get married since we opened our doors in June 2016.

In that time, we’ve seen weddings of all types take place within our stunning rooms. From the historic formal Dining Room with the impressive original chandelier as the centre piece, or our Ballroom which seats over 100 and has amazing views of the parkland.  Outdoor ceremonies have been really popular this year, either on the terrace by our South Pavilion, or at the front of the house, where the happy couple say their vows with the front of the Manor as the backdrop.

Of course, none of us know what the future holds, but with Brexit on the horizon, we know that every penny counts. So the team here have come up with a few clever cost saving plans that might help whilst you’re planning your dream wedding.


Devon wedding venue, Rockbeare Manor 

  1. Weekday Weddings 

When your parents or grandparents got married, it was probably held on a Saturday! That was the norm back then, but times have definitely changed and there is a very easy way to instantly save thousands on your wedding…and that is to choose a week day. Our Saturday venue hire rate of £3500, we feel, is very reasonable for our stunning venue and impeccable service, but when you compare that to our mid-week rate of £1200, you could instantly save yourself £2300. You will find that your loved ones will want to be there for your wedding whatever the day! Give them plenty of notice to allow them chance to book a day off work if necessary, but they will relish the opportunity to celebrate with you, and they will understand that you have a budget to stick to. They may even decide to extend their break and take a few days holiday in Devon, and visit the amazing nearby sites such as Lyme Regis and the Jurassic Coast, Exmoor National Park or Exeter city including its famous Royal Albert Memorial Museum.


Follow this link for the full information and terms of our special offers.  


  1. DIY!

Don’t worry, we’re not suggesting that you suddenly learn how to be a seamstress and make your own dress, or quickly train as a florist and design your own bouquet. But it might be that there are certain jobs, that you or those close to you, might be able to help with. How about the save the date cards and invites? With so many brilliant design packages available online nowadays, there are lots of options to choose from. Have a look on Pinterest and Instagram for some creative ideas to get you started. And why not ask your creative friends to get involved too? This doesn’t just save money, it’s also a really lovely way to personalise things too.

The beauty about our venue, is that it is stylish, welcoming and immaculate as it is! If you don’t have a large budget for venue décor, it really doesn’t matter. You can create stunning centre pieces for very little cost. Table runners are an easy way to add personality and colour to your table and there are endless, very cost effective options online.  You could then add a mirror base with a collection of candles of varying sizes on. Candlelight works wonders in our Ballroom and will create an amazing atmosphere.  If you wanted to finish it off with some jam jars, decorated with lace or ribbon, then filled with carefully arranged flowers that you had selected yourself, that would work perfectly. These are all things that your friends and family will be more than happy to help with.


  1. Music 

Lots of our couples are desperate to hire a couple of different music options for their special day, from the harpist to take them up the aisle, the string quartet to play whilst guests are eating, to the ‘must see’ band to get everybody boogying away in to the small hours. Whilst these are all really lovely options, the cost of them can soon add up! It’s a good idea to chat to your partner about what your priorities are – for instance, we often get couples who put together their own playlist for the various stages in the day, from guest arrival, to the ceremony music, then drinks reception. We can then play your song choices via our Sonos speakers, which link throughout the whole of the venue. DJ’s are invariably a more cost effective option, rather than a band and to make it more personal you could always ask your guests to choose a song when they RSVP which can be played later on in the evening once the party begins.


  1. Food and drink

Our wonderful Head Chef, Ben, has lots of brilliant menu options available, and our couples often have real difficulty deciding what to have! We update the menus each year, and we all have a huge passion for making sure that the food is delicious, imaginative, locally sourced and most importantly…individual to us. Take your pick from our four different menus, which each get cheaper (per head) the more guests you have!  If you want to avoid spending extra on lots of canapés plan for 2pm or 2.30pm ceremony, and that way it is much more likely that your guests would have had chance for some lunch before they arrive to your wedding.

As for drinks, you could choose Prosecco over Champagne, or if you prefer, bring in your own bubbly. Our corkage fee is £11 per bottle, however overall this could still save you a considerable amount if you shop around for a reasonably priced Prosecco. Another delicious drinks reception option could be our Fresh Fruit and Elderflower Cooler. At £2 per glass this is a cost effective way of providing your guests with a thirst quenching drink on arrival, without breaking the bank.


  1. Transport

Many of our couples have both the ceremony and the reception at Rockbeare Manor, meaning that you don’t need to organise transport to get from the ceremony to the reception venue. But if you are still looking for that ‘wow’ factor when you drive up our magical driveway and pull up in front of our stunning house, why not ask around and see whether any of your family or friends has a quirky or unusual car for you to travel in? Our experience tells us that families and friends love to be asked, and (usually!) love to have a job that involves them in the wedding!


  1. The dress!

There has never been more choice available to brides and grooms looking for special outfits to wear on their big day. Whatever your budget is, there are plenty of options out there. If you’re keen to not spend too much, there are many high street shops now selling gorgeous wedding dresses. Have a look in Monsoon, M&S, Phase Eight, Whistles and ASOS, to name just a few that we’ve seen this year. Alternatively, have you thought about buying second hand? eBay always has a wonderful selection, and if you know of a good seamstress, there are ways that you can adapt what you buy so that it fits you perfectly. And it’s always worth trying charity shops too – near to us in Exeter is the wonderful ‘Wedding Wishing Well Foundation’ – this charity has hundreds of pre-loved wedding dresses available that all cost under £500.


Ceremonies and receptions at Rockbeare Manor


If you’re newly engaged, and would like to discuss your wedding at Rockbeare Manor please just get in touch by calling 01392 797444. We’d love to hear from you, and would be delighted to show you around our beautiful venue and talk through your plans for this very special day!

Ballroom at Rockbeare Manor

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