Why we’re doing it at Duxford – 49 weeks to go

(picture from Duxford Events website)

Earlier this week, The Boy and I sat down (not that unusual) to read (also not that unusual) two legally-binding contracts (actually a bit unusual). Which I then signed and sent off, along with two rather large cheques (really quite unusual).

That means, barring any last-minute changes of heart and trips to Rio he may have planned, we are actually getting married on 13 February next year. Or, having not yet booked the registrar, we will at the very least have a very nice party venue and two (lovely) photographers to take photos of said party. (On a related note, the next person to tell me ‘Oh, 13 February, that’s going to come around so quickly!’ will probably be staring at the business end of a control freakery-induced panic attack. You have been warned.)

For those of you who read last week’s post (you didn’t? That’s ok, I can wait – off you go and give it a quick skim-read. Done? Excellent), I mentioned that I would talk in more detail this week about the venue we’ve chosen. So, because I like to keep my promises (at least this early in a blogger-reader relationship), that’s exactly what I’m going to do. I know, exciting, right?

We’ve elected to get married and have our reception in the same place, and that place is the Imperial War Museum at Duxford. There are several reasons we chose the venue:

1. As I have mentioned before, I’m a bit obsessed with the 1940s & 1950s, and our reception venue is going to be an original 1940s building (quick warning to those of you coming along – you will need to leave the building to use the toilets. So, you know – bring a coat.).

2. It has planes and everything.

3. The event team let us have afternoon tea as the wedding breakfast without wanting to charge us more than if we’d chosen a three-course meal.

4. The Shuttleworth Collection never got back to us.

5. Bunting is already up in the reception venue, meaning I don’t need to have a ‘Come on everyone, let’s make bunting, it’ll be really fun!’  party, the end-result of which would be none of the attendees ever speaking to me again.

6. It’s really, really cool.

While we love the venue and can’t imagine getting married anywhere else, we have had to sacrifice a few people we’d  love to have there but just can’t squeeze in, due to fire regulations, health and safety guidance and ‘Do you want your nearest and dearest to be able to breathe?’ type considerations. While it’s very good for me to learn to compromise, I did have a sulking marathon to rival my 14-year old self when we got the news that we had to cut down on guests. It went something like, “Well I don’t want to have to cut down my guest list. Well, I don’t want to have to have it anywhere else.” On a loop. For three days. Luckily, The Boy and I have a ‘You asked the question, no backsies’ rule now we’re engaged.

The ceremony room itself looks like a conference room (because that’s what it is), but we have been told that we can decorate how we want, as long as we don’t put anything in the walls (pins, coded messages for future generations), which does leave us quite a lot to work with (except for that lovely drawing pin installation I’ve dreamed of putting up on the wall of my wedding venue…). If anyone has any decorating ideas that would make a modern, grey confererence room with concertina walls look like a lovely, vintage space, all ideas will be considered. Unless you’re going to suggest painting the walls khaki green and covering them with brown paper – I already checked, and we’re not allowed to do that.

The reception venue (which has a red phonebox outside – if we can’t get a blue policebox there, that has to be the next best thing, right?) will be set up like a street party (which means my lovingly-crafted first draft of a table plan, done before we’d even started looking at venues, is completely ruddy useless. That will teach me for being an over-organised loon), with teapot centrepieces, lots of tea and, for some, a fair bit of wartime spirit when they see who they’re sitting opposite.

Should probably get around to booking that registrar this week then.

On a side note, if reading this post has whetted your appetite for 1940s weddings, I would definitely recommend this article on the Imperial War Museum website: What to wear to a wartime wedding.


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