What We Do
Weddings, Civil Ceremonies & Partnerships
Begin your “happily ever after” in your own bespoke style at The Oak Barn - be it a lavish banquet or relaxed rustic wedding, our exclusive use farm, featuring two spectacularly restored barns and a weaving house, is the perfect venue for Your Wedding.
The awe-inspiring Oak Barn has a magnificent high vaulted roof, glass frontage overlooking the courtyard, hidden state of the art technology, underfloor heating and a cosy wood burning stove; every modern convenience in a breathtaking old threshing barn yet with an intimate feel.
With classic elegance and tranquil views, The Byre offers a graceful space perfectly suited for ceremonies or more intimate receptions, or it can be transformed into an entertainment room for the children. The romantic terrace, waterfall and lily pond are a wildlife haven and perfect for a celebratory toast or photographs.
And at the end of your wonderful day, curl up and enjoy a celebratory glass of bubbles in our sumptuous Wedding Cottage. With views across the surrounding sheep pasture you will love the magic of this romantic rural setting whatever the season. Combined with a warm welcome and personal service we are confident that your wedding will exceed all expectations.
Please contact Tim or Deana for further details or to arrange a viewing.
Ceremony or Wedding
Q. Where can we hold our civil ceremony or partnership?
A. Both The Oak Barn and The Byre are licensed by the Kent County Council so the choice is yours.
Q. What is the process for organising a civil ceremony or partnership at The Oak Barn?
A. Once you have booked your wedding with The Oak Barn we are then responsible for registering your request for a Civil Ceremony or Partnership with Kent County Council (KCC). They will then contact you regarding your Notices of Marriage as well as requesting a fee to cover the cost of producing and managing the ceremony, and the attendance of registration staff to celebrate and register your marriage.
Q. Can we have a civil ceremony and ask a celebrant or vicar to come to do a blessing?
A. Yes, but there needs to be a 30 minute gap between the civil ceremony finishing and the blessing beginning.
Q. Can we have our ceremony outside?
A. If it is not raining we can open The Byre's glass doors and your guests can be seated outside on the terrace. If the laws change you may soon be able to be married on the pontoon or in our courtyard.
Q. What happens if it rains on the day?
A. Depending on various factors such as decorations and the arrival time of your florist, a final decision will be made between Tim or Deana and the bride/groom or their nominated person two hours before the service is due to start. If you have a large installation with lots of decorations or flowers then a decision will be made before the florist arrives. Once the location is finalised we cannot change it even if the weather changes.
Q. How many guests can we invite for a civil ceremony or partnership?
A. The Oak Barn can seat about 150 with more standing. The Byre can seat about 70 guests with 30 standing inside the barn. On a sunny day with The Byre's doors open and guests seated on the terrace we can do many more.
Q. Can we have music during our civil ceremony or partnership?
A. Yes, we have an amazing sound system in The Oak Barn as well as in The Byre and on The Byre's terrace. Please ensure that you have nominated someone to be in charge of your music and that your playlist has been downloaded, just in case! Music should include at least three songs for the prelude, one song to walk down the aisle to, three songs for when signing the register and one song to walk out to. Please remember that you cannot have any reference to religion in the ceremony, so you cannot use hymns. You are also welcome to have live music during your ceremony and reception drinks.
Q. Is it possible to be married in St. George's Church in Benenden?
A. Reverend David Commander is very happy to meet with you to find out if you have a Qualifying Connection to get married at St. George’s Church and talk through the whole process of getting married.
Q. What is the capacity of The Oak Barn?
A. We can seat approximately 130 guests and host about 250 for the evening reception.
Q. What is the capacity of The Byre?
A. We can seat approximately 50 guests and host about 130 for the evening reception.
Q. We are planning an small wedding, will the barn feel too big?
A. Depending on the size of your wedding we have the elegant The Byre with stunning view down the valley or, The Oak Barn is divided by historic walls which can ensure an intimate feel.
Q. What is included at your venue?
- Exclusive use of two stunning Grade II listed barns with a terrace and a courtyard set in a romantic country setting in Kent's Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
- Both barns are licensed for civil ceremonies, alcohol and music
- Fully equipped commercial kitchen (to be used by commercial caterers only)
- Ladies, gentlemen's and disabled toilets
- The option to host an intimate dinner for approximately 50 guests in The Byre
- Seated dining for approximately 130 people in The Oak Barn
- Stage for your band or DJ
- Seating and furniture for a civil ceremony or partnership in The Byre
- Outdoor furniture, barstools and tables on the terrace outside The Byre
- The option to add a 9' x 9' marquee on the south side of The Oak Barn, if additional space is required
- The option to have a crèche or entertainment room for the children in The Byre
- Terrace with breath-taking views down the valley or secluded courtyard for your drinks reception
- A picturesque pond with a waterfall and pontoon for a peaceful stroll and photography
- Sculptured grass and perennial garden forming a wonderful backdrop for your photographs
- High tech mood lighting system in The Byre and The Oak Barn
- High tech PA and sound system with microphone in The Oak Barn
- High tech sound system in The Byre
- Wifi in The Byre and The Oak Barn
- Easel for your seating plan
- Under floor heating system in both barns
- Contemporary log burner in The Oak Barn with a basket of wood for a cosy evening
- Air cooling and heat extraction system in The Oak Barn for those hot balmy nights
- Ample onsite parking
- No corkage
- No vat
Q. Do you have any packages?
A. We believe that every wedding should be as unique as each couple so therefore, we do not have our own caterers but we do have a list of local suppliers which can assist you will all your needs. I am pleased to say we do not charge corkage and because we offer a fully equipped kitchen it means your caterers will not need to hire in equipment.
Q. Do you have disabled access?
A. Yes, the barns, courtyard and parking areas have sloped access throughout. The Byre has an ambulant disabled toilet and The Oak Barn a fully equipped disabled toilet for wheelchair users. Our Wedding Cottage is also wheelchair accessible.
Q. Do you supply tables and chairs?
A. We will supply a table and chairs for your civil ceremony or partnership as well as benches for your guests. On the terrace we have a sofa set as well as four bar tables and chairs.
Q. Do you have a microphone and PA system?
A. The Byre is small enough that you do not need a microphone or PA system. The Oak Barn has a PA system with a wireless microphone for your use.
Q. Do you have a bar?
A. We have a bar which Tim lovingly created from Oak from our felled tree. If you want a pay bar please ask your caterer, choose from one of our suppliers or feel free to source your own.
Q. Do you charge corkage?
A. We believe corkage is wrong so no! But, because of this, we do ask you to take away your empty bottles. If you or your caterer prefers then we are happy to arrange for them to be removed by a commercial company.
Q. Can our guests bring confetti?
A. We ask that they bring real, light coloured flower confetti, such as dried rose petals, which are in keeping with our eco-friendly ethos.
Q. Can we bring pets?
A. We are a working farm so we are sorry but we cannot allow pets.
Q. What time can we party until?
A. We are licensed for music and alcohol until 11:00pm except for New Year's Eve when we are licensed until 1:00am, your guests then have half an hour to say their goodbyes.
Q. Do you have noise restrictions?
A. Yes, once the amplified music begins all doors do need to be closed.
Q. Can we have fireworks?
A. No, we are a working farm, as are many of our neighbours, and fireworks will scare the animals.
Q. Can we have Chinese lanterns?
A. No, not only do we have our own fire safety issues but the debris impacts on locals and farmland. This is recommended by the Country Land Association.
Q. Can we decorate the barns?
A. Absolutely, but please run your ideas past us first to ensure they are within health and safety guidelines.
Q. Can we have candles?
A. We do not allow any naked flames but you are welcome to use LED candles.
Q. Can cars be left overnight?
A. Absolutely, non resident guests can leave their cars but we ask that they are collected by 10:30am the next morning.
Q. Do you have accommodation?
A. Yes, we can sleep up to 18 guests in the five Weaver's Cottages, and there is also an excellent selection of accommodation walking distance from the farm, and in the surrounding areas from airB&B to 5 star spa hotels.
Q. What time is check in and check out?
- Day wedding - our check in is 12 noon and check out is 10am
- Weekend wedding - check in on Friday is 2pm and check out on Sunday is 12 noon
- If there is no event the day before your wedding then you are welcome to book the cottages for an extra night
Q. What is included in Weaver's Cottages?
- An elegant Wedding Cottage and four luxurious two bedroom cottages, which can accommodate up to 18 people in 9 bedrooms (7 double rooms and 2 twin rooms)
- 1 and 2 Weaver's Cottages have a twin room and a double room
- 3 and 4 Weaver's Cottages have two double rooms
- 5 Weaver's Cottage is the Wedding Cottage
- Open plan kitchen, dining and living space in each cottage
- Bathroom with walk in shower and bath in the Wedding Cottage
- Shower room in the two bedroom cottages
- Dressing tables with makeup light and mirror
- Smart TV with freeview
- Robes in the Wedding Cottage
- Towels in all cottages
- Iron and ironing board
- Covered parking
Viewings & Bookings
Q. When can we come and view the farm?
A. We can organise weekday and weekend viewings but only by appointment as we may have wedding or event. Please contact either Tim or Deana.
Q. How long will you hold a date for us?
A. We are happy to hold a date for you until we receive interest from another couple and we will always give you first refusal.
Q. What is the payment process?
A. Once you have confirmed a date, we will send out a contract and a deposit invoice for 50% of the venue hire fee only. Three months before your wedding we will require the remaining venue hire fee, the accommodation fee and the civil ceremony fee (if applicable). A week before your wedding we will require a security deposit.
Set up & Supplier Access
Q. What time do we would have access to the barns for set up and decoration?
- You and your suppliers have access from 8am on the day of your wedding
- If there is no event the day before your wedding then you can also have access from 2-5pm on the day before to set up
Q. Will our suppliers be able to deliver and collect before and after our wedding?
- We have a small storage space which your suppliers can use and items can be delivered 2 days before you wedding or stored after your wedding
- If there is an event the day after your wedding then everything needs to be moved into our storage by midnight, but if there is no wedding it does not need to be cleared on your wedding night