I found that when I was looking at potential wedding venues and came across Leicester Warren Hall - the venue where we eventually ended up getting married - there isn't that much online about in in terms of reviews, couples experiences etc so I thought I'd put together something that might be helpful to others. I'd literally mention it to people who had lived/worked in Knutsford or in the local wedding industry for years and they'd be like... "um, no haven't heard of it?" eek.
As I couldn't find much information about it I had fairly low expectations (after visiting a few other more budget friendly venues and being a bit disappointed) which were blown out of the water when we arrived there in person and found a really cute little barn-style venue with an added bonus of a pretty unusual ceremony room that looked like a church inside.
As I've said the main room is barn style with exposed brick, wooden floors and heavy doors. It looks really cute inside. It's definitely one that you can dress up really well and perfect if you're having a rustic type wedding (apparently bunting works particularly well here!) and they're not really strict about how the room needs to look. Where it actually is in Knutsford is lovely too, down some pretty peaceful roads and with fields to most sides.
You can just have your wedding reception here if you'd prefer to get married in a church or at the local registry office. Which brings me onto the ceremony room.
There's parking on site for guests, a well stocked bar that's reasonably priced (important), space for a DJ/band (the venue booked our DJ thankfully, he was great and listened to what we wanted and what our guests wanted), plenty of places to stay near by and Knutsford centre, which has a train station, is about 5-10 minutes away if people want to make a weekend of it or just wander into town at some point. It's near the motorway - but not too near - for any guests travelling in from further afield.
There's an outside area with grass, benches and trees that would be perfect for lawn games - a lot of our guests spent time outside as it was such nice weather and we got our group photos taken outside on the lawn. They have to shut at 12 midnight. I'd say the venue would comfortably hold about 100 guests - you could have more but it might be a squeeze, especially when the party gets going at night.
We dealt with Kate who runs the venue, she's really nice and well experienced in hospitality. On the day, her and her staff were absolutely amazing! Service was fab and they were all really friendly. Kate's really relaxed and calm about things which can be a godsend as a jittery bride but sometimes I found it better to pop up and see her to run through things rather than calling or emailing her, it felt a bit more productive that way. If you're a bridezilla this probably isn't quite the venue for you. Generally I found them all really accommodating and helpful (especially to co-ordinate suppliers), I think they're all genuinely nice people who want to put on the best event for you.
Food and drink
The options are really varied - they have in house chefs and you do need to use them, there isn't an option for outside catering (fine by us, less work). We had arrival drinks, a 3 course meal, drinks at the speeches and an evening buffet style bacon sandwich and chips type of affair which worked for us. I can't comment too much on the food, what I did have was lovely but I felt a bit too nervous and laced into my dress to eat properly and really enjoy it. The feedback from everyone else was great though! They do everything from afternoon tea to multi-course swanky stuff. I found the food reasonably prices as well, no excessive cost per head.
There is no venue hire cost to use this venue! Yes, that's right, to hire the main room costs nothing!!! You pay extra if you want the ceremony room and you obviously pay for food/drink etc. for your guests - this is really, really unusual, some places we enquired at were £4k just for room hire before you even thought about feeding people, buying dresses or paying for a wedding cake etc. Crazy! The costs were really reasonable too, I didn't feel like it was the "oh we heard it was a wedding so we added an extra zero to everything" attitude that is way too common in the wedding industry.
If you've got any questions or you just want a chat about Leicester Warren Hall just drop me a line on Twitter or by email - best bet is to give them a call or pop in to actually see it in person, you'll be really pleasantly surprised. Our guests all absolutely loved the venue which I was so pleased about and I didn't want to have the same wedding I'd seen 10 other people have too which I felt would have been the case with some of he other venue packages we saw.