The Wedding Suppliers Interviews : Episode 5
Ashdown Park Hotel
Today’s interview is with the lovely Tanya Clark, the Events Office Manager at the simply superb Ashdown Park Hotel in East Sussex. As an East Sussex Wedding Photographer, its a great privilege to be one of the hotel’s preferred wedding photographers. Indeed Ashdown is one of the UK’s best wedding venues and its only 30 minutes from home!
Based in East Sussex and as an Ashdown Park Hotel Wedding Photographer, I love shooting at the venue. Set in Ashdown Forest, it offers just about everything. Beautiful parkland, woods, a stunning lake and fountain and that’s only the outside! The interior is just about as dramatic and spectacular as it gets when it comes to wedding venues. The magnificent chapel is a magical place to enjoy your wedding breakfast.
Brides have a fantastic choice about where they can hold their ceremony at Ashdown Park. They can be married inside in a variety of rooms depending on number of guests and even outside by the beautiful summer house, with the lake as a back drop!
From the prospective of an East Sussex Wedding Photographer, Ashdown Park is amazing all year round. The grounds change with each season and I have shot weddings in 90 degree heat down to snowy and cold ones in December. I remember one bride abandoning her wedding car and arriving in a four wheel drive borrowed from a neighbour and climbing out in her UGG Boots!
Over the years I have been fortunate to cover in excess of 60 weddings at Ashdown and its always a delight to work alongside the amazing professional and friendly staff. Simply put, from a wedding photographer’s perspective its an amazing place for a wedding.
Peter: Please can you tell me a little about the Hotel and what it offers.
Tanya: The Ashdown Park Hotel and Country Club offers the heights of luxury in the heart of East Sussex. Country house hotels in Sussex don’t come more luxurious, or offer such a magnificent combination of elegance, style, award winning dining and outstanding business and leisure facilities. At Ashdown Park you’ll find the perfect Sussex wedding venue. The neo-Gothic splendour of the Grade II listed mansion house, a choice of period rooms, beautifully landscaped grounds, and a lovingly maintained secret garden, all come as part of your dream wedding.
Peter: What sets you a part from your competitors? Why should couples book your venue particular?
Tanya: At Ashdown Park it is all about ‘the team’ – from your experienced personal wedding coordinator to your event managers on the day everyone goes out of their way to help. At the end of the day we all care about your day. An example of this:
“From the moment we arrived for our first meeting with Tanya and the team, to the moment they waved us off the morning after our wedding; the team at the Ashdown Park Hotel have gone out of their way to consistently meet our demands, offer suggestions and guide us through the busy, hectic and sometimes stressful process of wedding planning. Everything we needed was done for us, and every question we had no matter how small or silly was answered with professionalism and courtesy and understanding.
The venue itself is beautiful and has such character, it is not every day you can have a civil wedding ceremony surrounded by the most beautiful stained glass usually reserved for churches and cathedrals. Each room has character and uniqueness that follows through every interaction you will have with the venue and its staff. The level of service on display from each and every single member of staff has been one of the most common threads of feedback we have had from our guests. They were all bowled over by the staff and how they were all made to feel during their stay at the venue.
The wedding day itself was run with effortless efficiency by the team, we never had to look too far for help or assistance, or even at one point another glass of champagne of some canapes for the Bride who had missed them while having photos taken – again an incredible attention to detail and level of attentiveness we hadn’t quite expected.
In summation, 18 months of planning resulted in the most wonderful day that we will look back on and treasure fondly for all out years to come and we simply could not have done it without the help, care and hard work of every single team member we met and interacted with. I will go out of my way to recommend the venue to anyone who wants to listen to me and I honestly believe that anyone who chooses this fabulous venue for their own special day will not be disappointed.
Our heartfelt thanks to Tanya, Braden, Claire and all the team!
Helen & Colm”
In addition to this we are very lucky to have our fantastic preferred suppliers that we have worked with for many years.
Lastly our beautiful converted Chapel function space, being able to accommodate an outside ceremony set in our 186 acre estate, bell ringers in the tower and an organist playing whilst you walk down the aisle.
Peter: The Chapel is certainly very special indeed and probably one the most breathtaking places to hold a wedding in the UK! Also over the years, the hotel always seems to put together a great team.
I know you have many years of experience in arranging spectacular weddings. I’ve photographed quite a few!
Peter : Can brides contact you at the moment and how can you help them to view the hotel? (Do you offer video show rounds etc?)
Tanya: Absolutely, I am here! Yes I am more than happy to video call couples to show them what we have to offer.
Email: email@example.com or call 01342 824988
Peter : Do you have any exciting new offerings in the pipeline for 2021 and beyond i.e. new products/services etc
Tanya: We are always looking at wedding trends and seeing if there is anything else we can add to make the couples day even more special.
Peter: Just like us, I expect you’ve been super busy re arranging weddings and events for your poor clients. How have you found it?
Tanya: Very much so, I feel incredibly sorry for all of our couples having to look at postponing their special day. We are all very much looking forward to welcoming everyone back as soon as possible.
Peter: Do you have any particular wedding story that stands out? Please share it here if you can.
Tanya: I love weddings that do things a little differently in a creative way. Not one particular wedding stands out.
Peter: Please offer a tip or piece of advice for brides and grooms considering booking the service you offer. i.e. what to look out for/questions to ask/things to avoid etc
Tanya: We have a thorough checklist for all couples to use during the coordination process. I would also say to book a professional photographer that knows the venue inside out just like our preferred suppliers do. We are also very lucky to have everything onsite. This makes it so much easier for everyone, they can stay as long as they’d like to use our leisure facilities and enjoy the countryside that we are surrounded by.
Come along to our Evening Wedding Showcase on Friday 23rd October from 18.00 to discover the wonders of Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club.
Peter: Thank you so much for your time and thoughts Tanya.
If you are interested in finding out more about this amazing venue, please do not hesitate to get in touch. I know that with all the recent chaos and mass postponement of weddings, dates for 2021 and 2022 are filling up very fast so don’t delay!
Here are the contact details you need.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01342 824988
+44 (0) 7590 983418
East Sussex Wedding Photographer Peter Prior has developed an international reputation for an exciting and unobtrusive approach to covering the wedding day.
Peter shoots a blend of contemporary, reportage, documentary and fine art wedding photography, and his work has been described as having a "certain timeless elegance".