Charlotte Balbier

its the most wonderful time of the year… & we’re off to hilltop country house!

August 26th, 2015 | Julia Braime

Hilltop Country House Autumn 2015

I’m so, so excited to be launching our extremely beautiful season of Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibitions for autumn 2015 in just over two weeks’ time at the exceptionally pretty Hilltop Country House! Is this the loveliest, most friendly and personal wedding venue I’ve come across?  Just maybe!

Hilltop Country House

Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibition

Flash Lane, Prestbury, Cheshire, SK10 4ED

Sunday 13th September 2015

12pm till 4pm

FREE ENTRY

Hilltop’s just a little bit a lot special.  A stunning, exclusive use, family home with seriously gorgeous gardens, a pristine permanent marquee, rooms on site and a civil license, book nothing till you’ve seen it! Add 30+ of the region’s very best wedding supplier stars – this line up is an absolute knockout – and we’ve a recipe for another crazy beautiful day.  Are you in?

Read our Dream Venue feature on Hilltop Country House by clicking here. 

As you know we don’t sit still for long at Brides Up North HQ and our Hilltop Country House event is just the first in an absolutely sensational (as ever!) selection of beautiful bridal events that we have planned for you.  We take pride in the variety and diversity of our venue portfolio – you can see our full schedule of nine dates and venues by clicking here – and we’re sure that there’s something to inspire every one of our readers.

bride to be?

As well as all that inspiration – completely FREE – we are also giving away up to 150 FREE Bride To Be media packs, filled with glossy magazines and treats from Brides Up North.  Just because we love you.  As demand is high, to pick up your pack all you need to do is pre-register using the form below.  While stocks last only.

As a new feature for 2015, we plan to follow up the event to each visiting bride with an interactive show newsletter packed full of exhibitor discounts and links, meaning that the wedding inspiration continues after the main event.

Only the bride need register for larger groups.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Select the event that you wish to attend (required)

Number of people attending the event (including yourself) (required)

You can also email contact@bridesupnorth.co.uk if you do not wish to use the contact form. Media packs are limited and subject to availability.  We operate a first come, first served policy.

wedding industry professional?

We would love to welcome new exhibitors to the Brides Up North family in 2015. We are now accepting exhibitor bookings for all of our fabulous luxury wedding exhibitions across three regions this year.

Click here to view the full schedule.

Exhibitors will be strictly limited by category and places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. Since their inception in spring 2012, all exhibitions have been sell outs on exhibitor space with a record attendance for every venue. Consequently, we expect demand to be very high. Get in touch as soon as possible to guarantee your place.

Email Julia at contact@bridesupnorth.co.uk for details.

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dream venue: hilltop country house

August 25th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

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This afternoon on the blog we’re thrilled to introduce you to another of our dream venues, hilltop country house, situated in the heart of the Cheshire countryside.

As a family run business, Hilltop Country House aims to make each wedding as individual as the bride and groom themselves, while providing a stunning setting, first class service, exclusivity and to-die-for menus. What more could you want?

Here at Brides Up North we’re more than familiar with how fabulous this charming country house is as we stage our luxury wedding exhibitions in its romantic gardens twice a year (the next one is coming up on 13th September 2015, so put it in your dairies!)

But rather than us harp on, we thought we’d hand over to those who know Hilltop best to give more details on its wonderful wedding offering…

With images by Lee Brown Photography.

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Tell Brides Up North about Hilltop Country House, what is its history?

hilltop country house say: Hilltop, located in Prestbury, Cheshire, is a 17th century house set within 15 acres of its own land and surrounded by fields. It has been home to the Gardner family since 1985 and has been a wedding venue since 2008.

What facilities does it have? 

Hilltop is purely a wedding venue and offers private and exclusive use to our clients. The ground floor of the house is used for both ceremonies and drinks receptions and we have a large marquee and dance room for larger ceremonies, the wedding breakfast and the evening party. Our guests are free to wander throughout our spectacular gardens. The many different parts of the garden offer countless enchanting locations for wedding photography. In addition to the main formal garden, there is a parterre with a lovely gazebo, the herb garden and nooks and crannies galore!

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What types of weddings can Hilltop Country House cater for?

Civil ceremonies for up to 66 guests are offered in the house. We can accommodate up to 160 guests for a civil ceremony and wedding breakfast in the marquee, and up to 100 guests for an outside ceremony on the terrace overlooking our beautiful gardens.

What makes Hilltop Country House a special wedding venue and sets you apart from others?

Hilltop is unique. There is no other venue in Cheshire that offers quite the same variety and choice. Our business is family run and the same team has been together since the very first wedding was held at Hilltop. Our attention to detail is exceptional and we offer an unlimited number of appointments to our brides and grooms as they make their way through the planning process.

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What sort of bride would be a Hilltop Country House bride?

A Hilltop bride is someone who wants to feel at home and very special on her wedding day. She is a girl who has the confidence in her own ideas and wants to work with our team to make her day completely personal to her and her groom. A standard package is certainly not for this type of bride!

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How can your staff help to make the planning process easier and the big day amazing?

We offer an outstanding service during the planning process. Our couples can visit as often as they wish and there is no limit to the number of appointments they may have during this period. We offer a food and wine tasting and we keep an eye on each couple’s progress and are always ready to remind them to attend to any outstanding matters – not only ones connected with the venue, but also in the wider sense, such as dresses, holidays etc.

We do all our own catering at Hilltop using locally sourced produce. We grow our own herbs and tons of mint for the mojitos! Our bar is run by Thirst Aid Limited. They are professional, knowledgeable and always ready to help and advise our couples. We have a list of recommended suppliers but we never take fees for any bookings they get through us. When we recommend someone, it is because we feel their excellent product or service will reach the same high standards as we expect of ourselves, and we feel that the lack of financial recompense emphasises our integrity.

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Can guests stay over at your venue? 

We have four ensuite bedrooms at Hilltop and there is a huge variety of accommodation within five to ten minutes of the venue. We supply our couples with a comprehensive information document that includes a list of accommodation.

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Tell us about your catering services? What makes them special? 

As previously mentioned, we do all our own catering at Hilltop using locally sourced produce. Our lamb is grazed on our own fields and all our meat is free-range and comes from within five miles of the venue. We grow our own herbs and source Cheshire vegetables and salads. We have no fixed menus at Hilltop and we are more than happy to prepare a meal or a style of cuisine that is not on our lists of starters, main courses and desserts. We can do hog roasts and barbecues, buffets and tapas. You name it and we can do it. We offer a food tasting free of charge.

Any really memorable weddings at the venue? 

That is the whole ethos at Hilltop – each of our weddings is memorable, particularly to each bride and groom, as their day will have been exactly as they wished and will have been created especially for them.

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Where can readers get more information/ contact the venue?

You can visit www.hilltopcountryhouse.co.uk, email hilltopcountryhouse@hotmail.co.uk, or ring 01625 829940, to speak to us direct.

Do you have any bridal events or open days coming up shortly that my readers should know about?

Brides Up North are the only company allowed to organise wedding fairs at Hilltop and our next fair is on Sunday 13th September 2016. As we feel that we are the best, so we like to work with the best.

Is there anything else that Brides Up North should know?

Yes, that we think you are brilliant!

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you are invited to the bridal party!

August 12th, 2015 | Julia Braime

Bridal Party

As regular readers of these pages will know, Brides Up North are renowned for hosting the very best wedding exhibitions and bridal events that the regions have to offer.  We’re the absolute experts at getting all the pretty in one place – the most fabulous suppliers at the very best venues to inspire, delight (and organise!) our bride to be visitors.

Our shows are stunning, spacious and sophisticated. But this season, it’s set to get even more special.

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We’re celebrating five happy years of Brides Up North here at the HQ this autumn and to celebrate, we are hosting two huge parties (cunningly disguised as Grand Wedding Exhibitions)!

We are shaking things up, with all new “Brides Up North Edit” designer catwalk shows, swanky champagne bars, bespoke afternoon teas, beauty zones, wedding planning advice sessions & demos, glossy media packs for each visiting bride and special installations.  The team from the brand new (sensational!) Spa at Ramside will also be on hand with tips and treats for every visitor.

As ever, we don’t do things by halves here at Brides Up North. For both events, we are filling the whole of each hotel – and it’s going to be spectacular!  We don’t just squash in any old exhibitors either! Whether you are shopping for the final details or have no idea where to start, we can promise you the very best choice of the best bridal experts in the region.  Everything you can think of for planning your big day will be represented.

The fun doesn’t stop there either. We’ll be following up the day to each registered bride with an interactive show newsletter packed full of exhibitor discounts and links, meaning that the inspiration – and savings – continue after the main event.

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So, let us cordially extend the most lovely of invitations to;

the bridal party

Ramside Hall Hotel, Golf Club & Spa, Durham

Sunday 20th September 2015

11am till 3pm

Free Entry

a bridal ballroom

Hardwick Hall Hotel, Durham 

Sunday 4th October 2015

11am till 3pm 

Free Entry

Each event is different, so make sure to get both of them in your wedding planning diaries today!

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bride to be? you’re in the right place!

We’re giving away up to 250 free Bride To Be media packs at each event, filled with glossy magazines, treats from Brides Up North and exclusive offers.  As a VIP you’ll also get speedy entry to the event. As demand is high, to pick up your VIP bag all you need to do is pre-register using the form below.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Select the event that you wish to attend (required)

Number of people attending the event (including yourself) (required)

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wedding industry supplier? join the party!

We would love to welcome new exhibitors and old friends to the Brides Up North family in 2015/16. We are now accepting exhibitor bookings for all of our award winning luxury wedding exhibitions across three regions.

Exhibitors will be strictly limited by category and places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. Since their inception in spring 2012, all exhibitions have been sell outs on exhibitor space with a record attendance for every venue. Consequently, we expect demand to be very high.

Get in touch for pricing, exhibitor info and to guarantee your place.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Your Telephone No

Your Website (begin web address with http://www.)

What sort of wedding business are you enquiring on behalf of? e.g. Bridal Boutique/ Photographer etc

Select the event that you are interested in (required)

If you wish to attend more than one event, please list all here - discounts are available for block bookings

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Images by Cat Hepple Photography.

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in the navy. ian stuart for a glamorous wedding at allerton castle – kathryn & kelechi

June 23rd, 2015 | Julia Braime

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (45)

Here at Brides Up North we just love a glam wedding and today’s has it all – a striking gown, opulent colour scheme and men in uniform!

Kathryn and Kelechi chose the grand Allerton Castle as the setting for their dream wedding, which was then styled in keeping with the historic venue’s décor and to suit the couple’s personal taste.

Posh transport, sparkling stationery and lavish centrepieces all help to create a wedding day as alluring as the bride and groom’s attire. Glam to a tee.

With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Laura Calderwood Photography.

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (1)

kathryn says: We got engaged in Sydney, Australia, my hometown at the time. After meeting three years prior, Kelechi came over on a two-week holiday from the US Navy. Palm Beach is a favourite spot of mine so on day one of the trip we decided to go there and climb to the lighthouse, little did we know it wasn’t a pleasant stroll up but a hike! At the top and covered in sweat, I looked around and said “just think, this may be the last time we come here” – then turned back to Kelechi who said “we better make sure we remember it then” – he was down on one knee!

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (4)

Our wedding date was 18th April 2015. We chose this date mainly due to Kelechi’s work schedule. Spring in the UK is a beautiful time, so that helped too!

We got married at Allerton Castle, which we chose due to the grandness of the building, its Great Hall and the beautiful countryside location. As a lot of our guests were coming from overseas, we needed the wow factor!

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (2)

We didn’t really have a theme but kept everything very glamorous. We used a lot of candles, fairy lights and crystals. I picked this style due to the castle’s decor and so that it would be in keeping with what Kelechi and I like.

Black and Gold was the colour scheme. We choose this combination to match with Kelechi’s military uniform – dinner dress blues. Although the tux is actually black!

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (16)

I chose a dress that was the complete opposite of what I thought I’d choose! The dress was called Amalfi by Ian Stuart, which I bought from Limelight Occasions in Huddersfield. I was drawn to the dress due to its uniqueness. It was two colours and had beautiful detailing. It was like nothing I’d seen anyone wear before. As soon as I put the dress on, I knew I had to have it!

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (20)

Kelechi wore his military US Dinner Dress Blues uniform and the groomsmen who weren’t in uniform also wore black tuxedos.

My bridesmaids wore black maxi dresses with gold detailing around the top half of the dress, from Quiz. They were very flattering on all shapes and the girls looked fabulous whilst feeling comfortable at the same time. My ‘Mate of Honour’ wore a black tuxedo, hired from Greenwoods. He also invested in some gold shoes which looked amazing!

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (26)

As I was getting ready at the castle, I decided to drive my little white Fiat 500 there in the morning with some of my bridesmaids. I decorated the car and we had a great laugh on the way! I organised an Aston Martin as a surprise wedding present for Kelechi. The car picked him up in York and took him and his best man to the castle. We then organised a vintage double decker bus to bring our guests to the venue from York.

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (28)

Laura Calderwood was our photographer. She’s an absolute gem and was very patient with some of our more demanding guests. Nothing was too much trouble and the pictures taken speak for themselves and how great Laura’s work really is.

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (32)

Joanna at Twisted Willow provided all our flowers, centrepieces and dressed the Great Hall for our ceremony – it looked magical.

My flowers were a mixed white bouquet with crystal detailing. For the wedding reception we had tall candelabras on each table surrounded by candles and draped in crystals. I had a vase on our sweetheart table for my flowers to be shown off in.

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (35)

Another great supplier was Katie from Tigerlily Creations. Katie made all our stationery for our day from the invitations to the wishing well. Everyone commented on the quality and luxury feel she gave to our day.

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (42)

Our wedding cake was wheels of cheese and therefore our favours were jars of chutneys with the words ‘Spread the Love’ on. We also gave little red double decker bus key rings to all our guests as a lot of them were visiting from abroad.

We had a dessert included in our menu, which is why we chose a cake made of cheese. It was something different for a lot of people and we loved it! Matt at The Cheese & Chutney Co couldn’t have been nicer either.

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (49)

I wanted a fun cake topper so searched online and found Feats of Clay. Sarah is amazing and made both myself and Kelechi out of clay. A great talking point for guests and a great souvenir for us to keep.

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (56)

We used the Dine for the food, who are provided through the Castle. They were fabulous!

We had champagne and canapés of mini Yorkshire puddings, chicken skewers and goats cheese tarts, during the drinks reception. For the wedding breakfast we had fishcakes to start, followed by a sirloin of beef, rounded off with a glorious sticky toffee pudding. Everyone commented on the quality of the food. We organised cheeseburger and chips for the evening reception – it made our guests’ night!

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (54)

Entertainment wise, we had a string quartet playing for the guests’ arrival and during the drinks reception. It made for an elegant start to our day. For the evening entertainment we used Alive Network and booked the band Munch. Kelechi and I love live music so a band was a must. They played a whole host of music and catered for all ages.

During the band’s break we surprised our guests with a five-minute firework display. At first I was reluctant to do this but Kelechi pushed for it – I’m now so glad we did, it was magical and the guests loved it.

A Glam Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (59)

My favourite part of the day was the build-up and then finally seeing Kelechi as I stood at the top of the stairs before walking down the aisle. They are two moments that will stay with me forever. The dancing during the evening was pretty great too!  Kelechi literally burnt the stitching off the bottom of his shoes!

For our honeymoon we went to a Sandals resort in St Lucia. It was fantastic, they couldn’t do enough for us and helped make the week very romantic and assisted Kelechi is organising lots of little surprises along the way. One thing to note though – everyone there is on their honeymoon so bear that in mind.

My top tip for other Brides Up North is a tip that everyone gave me – make sure you take a step back, look around and enjoy the day so you can remember it. I made a conscious effort to do this and I’m glad I did. Kelechi and I also chose to have a sweetheart top table to make sure we got some time to just sit down with each other and take it all in – a great decision.

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this weekend… it’s our final #supersunday!

April 25th, 2015 | Julia Braime

Allerton Castle Spring 2015We are nearing the end of an absolutely fantastic season of Brides Up North events (*waves* to all our visitors, suppliers and new readers!) but we’ve one last sensational #supersunday of Luxury Wedding Exhibitions for you to enjoy before bidding you adieu till the autumn.

If you haven’t made it to one of our pretty events this season – or if you have and would like to do it all again (each of our events is completely bespoke and entirely different from the rest) then you need to put this last-chance-date in your diaries.  Because these shows are special…

We’ll be quick stepping it to both Northumberland (The Alnwick Garden) and North Yorkshire (Allerton Castle) this Sunday 26th April 2015, to bring more Brides Up North readers than ever before one huge dose of wedding inspiration at two of the most beautiful venues around, all in one go!

First up, we’re off to play at princesses at the gorgeous Allerton Castle:

allerton castle

Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibition

Allerton Castle, Allerton Park, Harrogate, North Yorkshire,HG5 0SE

Sunday 26th April 2015

11am till 3pm

FREE ENTRY

Come and see this spectacular venue dressed to the nines: meet the Dine wedding planners and their award winning catering teams, have a good look around, be amazed by our towering floral displays, sample our artisan cake creations, pose in our photo booths, hear some of the best live music in the County, play dress up with gorgeous gowns and accessories and tick off all those last essential details.

One of my very favourite events in our entire calendar, the Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibition at Allerton Castle really is that – pure luxury.  Even if you’ve already booked your wedding venue, come along to meet and seek inspiration from the region’s very finest wedding industry suppliers.  Trust me, you will not be disappointed!

The Alnwick Garden Spring 2015

And for readers even further Up North, you’ll want to grab your groom and head to the The Alnwick Garden:

the alnwick garden

Brides Up North Luxury & Vintage Wedding Exhibition

The Alnwick Garden, Denwick Lane, Alnwick, Northumberland, NE66 1YU

Sunday 26th April 2015

11am till 3pm

FREE ENTRY for Registered Bride +1 Guest

Usual prices and concessions apply for additional guests.

Let me tell you, you are in for a real treat!  The selection of exhibitors we have with us this Sunday 26th April really is stellar – from bridal gowns to cakes, event hire, accessories, love lights, music, entertainment… we’ve got it all, and these are the best in the area.  No need to look anywhere else, seriously.

This is a super special event, as not only is it packed to those bunting laced rafters with wedding inspiration, but it’s also in one of the prettiest settings I know – the extraordinary contemporary gardens and atriums of The Alnwick Garden.

Come and see it for yourselves, and get all your wedding planning sorted at the same time!

bride to be?

We’re giving away up to 200 free Bride To Be goody bags, filled with glossy magazines, treats from Brides Up North, exclusive offers and some little pressies from our sponsors.  As demand is high, to pick up your VIP bag all you need to do is pre-register using the form below.

While stocks last.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Select the event that you wish to attend (required)

Number of people attending the event (including yourself) (required)

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