Weddings at The George in Rye Hotel – Exclusive Offer for Love Sussex Weddings Readers

The medieval town of Rye, on the East Sussex/Kent border is fast becoming a not-so-secret hotspot for those looking for charming cobbled streets, history (it’s former defence, the Ypres Tower, dates back to 1250 and the church is almost 1000 years old!) and empty stretches of sandy beach – the seaside town is also the setting for E.F. Benson’s fictional town of ‘Tilling’ in the Mapp and Lucia novels and Rye featured in the recent BBC TV series of the same name.

So, it comes as no surprise that romantic Rye has stolen the hearts of many brides and grooms to be, who want to tie the knot in this quaint and magical medieval town.

One Rye wedding venue on the top of many a couple’s dream day wish list is The George in Rye; a Grade II listed 4-star hotel, located in the heart of the town and just minutes away from the vast beach at Camber Sands.

Dating back to 1575, when it was a coaching inn, The George in Rye is now one of England’s most highly regarded small hotels and has become well known for its ‘informal luxury’, welcoming atmosphere and fabulous food, with recent guests including; George Clooney, Matt Damon, Kevin Costner and Ian McKellen.

Available on an exclusive or non-exclusive basis, The George in Rye appeals to couples looking to create a sophisticated occasion with a relaxed ‘house-party’ vibe. From intimate celebrations for 12, to receptions with all the trimmings for up to 120 guests, the luxury hotel offers complete flexibility and prides itself on its friendly, personal approach.

The original Regency Ballroom complete with minstrel’s gallery, chandeliers and silk hand-painted wallpaper, is unrivalled for its elegance – it seats up to 120 guests and is licensed for civil ceremonies. The 16th century Benson room is ideal for more intimate occasions and can be used alongside the ballroom for a drinks reception or a separate bar. The Benson room can also offer a private setting for dinner with friends and family the night before the wedding.

The George in Rye’s facilities are completely adaptable, allowing guests the option to marry either at the local historic town hall – under a minute’s walk from the Hotel – or within the Regency ballroom itself. If couples are blessed with sunshine, guests can enjoy a celebratory toast out in the courtyard garden while the bride and groom are whisked off to nearby Camber Sands beach for photos. During the winter months, an intimate drinks reception can be held within the elegant surroundings of the Benson Room before the grand ballroom is unveiled for the wedding breakfast.

The kitchen team have developed a selection of seasonal Wedding Breakfast menus using ingredients on offer from the local farms and fishermen around Rye. There is an extensive list of fine wines and champagne including a number of new generation English wines from vineyards in East Sussex and Kent. Although the two popular packages (Traditional and Indulgence) are used as a starting point, packages are customised to suit a couple’s individual requirements.

There are 34 individually-designed ensuite bedrooms to choose from. From contemporary, spacious junior suites to more traditional superior doubles, every room has been stamped with an eclectic style and the little details that make all the difference. Rooms feature Vi-Spring beds, Frette linen, William Holland copper and zinc baths, power showers, REN products, flat screen TVs, Ruark iPod docks and free WIFI.  Junior Suites are truly romantic.


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A Rustic, Rural and Romantic Sussex Barn Wedding ~ Anna & Chris

Stop whatever you are doing (apart from reading this, of course) and just take a minute to appreciate the prettiness that is Anna and Chris’ beautiful Hendall Manor Barns big day!

Still with us? Good. This gorgeous couple tied the knot on a bright and blustery October day last autumn; incorporating magical fairy lights, wildflowers and a whole lotta hessian to their fuss-free rustic theme. Oh and they had a cake, made out of cheese. WIN.  Here’s Love Sussex Wedding reader (and beautiful bride) Anna to tell us all about her dream day:

Chris proposed on a very regular Sunday afternoon in our front room – he caught me completely by surprise by presenting me with a photo book which documented the last five years together, then on the final page asking if I would marry him. It was so thoughtful and very unexpected!

We wanted a rural, rustic wedding and the venue was just perfect. I grew up in Brighton, so Sussex was always top of our list with so many great venues to pick from!

Love Sussex Weddings was actually one of our main sources of inspiration, we also took advice from our venue and other venues we had viewed. I think from being a guest at lots of weddings you have already have an idea of things you like and what would work for you and your guests. We didn’t want our day to be too fussy or formal and once we had found the venue everything else started to fall into place.

We had 100 full day guests, no evening guests. The ceremony was fairly early at 12.30pm as our venue closed at 10.30pm. Chris’s brother Jack did a beautiful acoustic set whilst we signed the register. We had pie and mash as our wedding breakfast!

We were extremely lucky with the weather and had a warm but slightly blustery autumn day which allowed us to use the outside areas well into the evening. At closing time we arranged minibuses to take guest (generally the younger crowd!) to a nearby pub for some informal drinks.

I would describe our wedding theme as rustic and relaxed. We used used hessian, lace and wildflowers as the main components, as we didn’t want to stick to a regimental colour theme.

Getting Crafty

We used a template wedding invite by a designer on Etsy then printed and posted ourselves – this is a great money saving tip. We also decorated the table vases and created a ladder and flower pot table menu which worked brilliantly.

My top tips for other Sussex brides to-be are…

Don’t stress over the detail – no one will notice on the day, but will only notice if you are stressed! Invest in the things that matter then budget on the other bits, it doesn’t have to cost the earth. We would recommend ordering wine on a buy or return basis from Majestic as we had lots left over after the day!

What we enjoyed most about planning our wedding was…

The big bits – picking the venue and picking the food, especially sampling the menu!

The least favourite parts of wedding planning were…

I found dress shopping quite stressful as I didn’t have a style in mind and don’t really love shopping. Chris didn’t enjoy setting up the venue on the morning of the wedding.

We spent most of the budget on…

Food and drink accounted for about 60% of the total wedding cost but we managed to budget really well on most of the other areas. Venue was the next big cost.

Honeymoon Hotspot: Mini moon to New York, then full honeymoon to Vietnam in April.


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Hove (Actually)’s Regal & Romantic Wedding Venue – Angel House

Sarah Wenban Photography

If you’re looking for a wedding or reception venue steeped in history, with stunning sea views to boot; then look no further than Angel House. The Grade I Regency town house, which is actually the first property inside the Brighton/Hove border, has been lovingly converted back to its former glory and is now a dream day venue for many Sussex couples (including Love Sussex Weddings readers Vic and Jared) wanting to tie the knot overlooking the beach in luxurious surroundings, without the constant worry about how the weather will be.


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A Springtime Sussex Barn Wedding ~ Anna & Neil

With pastel prettiness, gorgeous seasonal blooms and soft romantic light; spring is such a lovely time to tie the knot, isn’t it?

This week’s wedding, also featured on Rock My Wedding, is most certainly a springtime stunner! Hove couple Anna and Neil married at the gorgeous West Sussex wedding barn venue, Upwaltham Barns on a sunny early May Bank Holiday and had a delicious yet understated day that will definitely make you swoon!

Over to Anna, our lovely bride, to hear all about her beautiful barn big day:

We have now been together 10.5 years (got together in 2003) and met at Southampton University. We started our relationship as best buddies sharing uni halls and student houses. Neil then declared his undying love for me (!) on the dance floor in a dingy student night club and the rest is history! We have done a lot together – travelling, moved to Brighton and bought a house in Hove etc. – so when 2012 came along, the inevitable next thing on the list was to get engaged.

I always knew the question would come at some point as Neil and I had talked about it so much with big grins on our faces, however in 2012 a lot of my friends were getting engaged and married and I was feeling very hard done by as the question still hadn’t been asked. All year, I was hoping! My friends constantly tried to reassure me that it would happen – I think I was driving them a little potty.

We then decided to book a holiday to Australia over Christmas and New Year time to visit some friends who had just had a baby. We flew to Perth and it was Christmas morning the next day. We got up early, very jet-lagged, and had smoked salmon sandwiches and bucks fizz in the most amazing Kings Park at the top of the city. The views are spectacular! I decided to take some photos of my friends with their new little baby and then Alex took the camera and said he could take some snaps of us. This is when Neil took my hand and started walking me down to a view point of the Swan river. I questioned why he was “taking me for a walk” at which point he then turned round, kissed me and went down on one knee!! Neil had planned all of it from the beginning of the year and I was a very happy emotional wreck!

We chose to get married in Sussex as we live in Hove and a lot of family and friends live in Brighton, London and Portsmouth so it seemed like the logical option for our guests. We absolutely love the Sussex countryside so Upwaltham Barns ticked all the boxes.

We knew it was the one…

We did most of our venue hunting via the internet and spent a day calling venues and booking appointments. We stumbled across the beautiful Upwaltham Barns online. As soon as we saw the pictures, we called and booked an appointment. Upwaltham Barns was the one and only venue we looked at which some might say is silly as you should shop around, however we felt it ticked all of our boxes so started looking at dates immediately.

We wanted the day to look and feel relaxed and simple – no fuss. As the venue was so beautiful and the barns were so gorgeous on their own, we knew we didn’t want anything really bright and garish to take away from this.

The colours we wanted were simple creams, greens and soft tones. We felt these colours complimented the wooden beams and pale pinks of the bare brick walls. It’s funny because as a couple, we like bright colours and have quite vibrant personalities but we knew for the wedding that we really wanted something relaxed, natural and down to earth. We also sought quite a lot of inspiration from other weddings we had been to prior to ours. Every wedding is so different and as we had never planned anything like this before, we thought it was a good idea to draw from our experiences.

Pretty Personal Touches

A personal touch we thought of were the ladies favours! We went to flea markets and car boots and managed to get 60 little vintage bottles. On each was a handwritten tag to the ladies of the wedding thanking them for coming to our special day. They went down a treat! The bottles were then taken home at the end of the night.

We also had a lot of family and friends help us plan our wedding: my parents helped with invitations and most other things, Neil’s mum sourced two old pocket watches for Neil and his best man Andrew as they both wanted one for their waistcoats, as well as other bits such as the old suitcase for the wedding cards and our talented friends did our flowers, photography, make up, hair and even DJ-ed! Neil’s sister Helen, took loads of Polaroid pictures for us which are great for our memories and look amazing in their album!


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An Autumn Wedding at Stanmer House for Sweethearts ~ Ella & James

Today, we’re heading back to a balmy October day to bring you Ella and James’ beautiful Brighton wedding! Our gorgeous newlyweds got christened at the same church, went to junior school together and met again years later, only to fall in love and tie the knot back at St John’s – Aw!

The couple held their dream day celebrations at the stunning Stanmer House, something our beautiful bride, Ella had dreamt about since she was a little girl! But, enough swooning from us, over to Ella to hear more about her wonderful Sussex wedding:

We first met when we were seven years old, we were in the same junior class at primary school, we were good friends, we then both moved on to different secondary schools and colleges, but James bumped into an old friend of ours, who I was still close to, in a local pub. James got in contact with me and I invited him over to a party I was having at mine, we soon got chatting and the rest is history!


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A Gold Coloured Wedding Dress & A Country Pub Wedding ~ Sarah & Sean

We’re pretty sure that when most couples plan for a summery country wedding, they picture themselves sipping a celebratory drink or two with their loved ones, in the sunshine – for Sarah and Sean, who tied the knot last August at the breath-taking Our Lady of Ransom Church in Eastbourne and then partied on at their local pub; The Plough in Upper Dicker, this idyllic scene certainly provided inspiration.

Favouring a laid back and relaxed rural affair, the loved up newlyweds opted for outdoor speeches (and drinks!), deckchairs and gorgeous rustic touches – we think you summer-loving brides will be swooning! Check out Sarah’s gorgeous gold wedding dress too. Here’s bloomin’ beautiful bride Sarah to tell us all about her dreamy East Sussex day:

We met when I was 17 and he was 22. It was up and down for the first two years, I went to uni in Birmingham but we stuck with it and have been solid ever since. We were always the couple who our friends saw as the ones who would be together forever and they constantly nagged Sean to propose. I was shocked when he proposed on December 25th (total clichéd proposal) with Bruno Mars’ Marry You in the background.

We chose to tie the knot in Sussex as we live in Eastbourne so naturally it was the right place to get married!

Inspiration came throughout the planning process, the more I sifted through Pinterest, Facebook pages and websites the more I was able to put ideas together. I am terrible at making decisions though so it often took days for me to make a decision and stick with it.

One example of this was the wedding favours, I so nearly ordered sunflower seeds, on several occasions and spent hours on eBay and other websites deciding which I liked best.

But then I had a lightbulb moment when I saw a picture of a small glass bottle online and knew it had to be Cosmopolitan shots as so many of our friends know it is our favourite cocktail.

All of the decor was bought by me or given to me by friends. We had a cake table which friends kindly bought cakes and biscuits for and we had sweets for the children. The table plan I created on word and added the heart buttons. I decorated jam jars for the flowers and tea lights to go in. I also used the jam jars for the straws and pens.

My friend made the ‘Love is Sweet’ sign and two others for me. Another friend made wooden coasters for the centrepieces, we used a jam jar for the flowers, a candle and an idea that came to my florist friend was to use amethyst crystal which I absolutely loved, it was so unique. I also had the wooden base for our wedding cake made and it has our initials and wedding day engraved on it made by Knock on Wood. I tried to use as many friends or local businesses as I could for everything. This kept the cost down hugely!

My top tips for other Sussex brides to-be are…

To research as much as you can and be prepared for your ideas to change and develop!

We spent most of the budget on…


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A Fun, Fairytale Themed Wedding at Herstmonceux Castle ~ Candy & Ron

Oh MY do we have one helluva stunning Sussex wedding coming your way today, in the form of Candy and Ron’s dreamy fairytale inspired castle wedding!

A day full of bubbles, bunting and balloons, oh and the occasional owl, this memorable East Sussex August wedding was organised entirely by gorgeous groom Ron (bride Candy arranged their Hong Kong celebrations) and will certainly have you smiling – and reaching for that ideas notebook, simultaneously.

Here’s Love Sussex Weddings reader Ron to tell us more:

I met Candy in Hyde Park, whilst rollerblading. Candy had just started to rollerblade again after a long time and had forgotten how to brake. She rolled down a very shallow hill but managed to crash into a lamppost. I was there to pick up the pieces. Two years later, I placed a map around this lamppost. This led to a three hour wild goose chase around a cold and wet Hyde Park for Candy, where she eventually found me at the cafe where I had first bought her a hot chocolate. I was waiting for her holding a hot chocolate cup, and in it a ring!

We decided to get married in Sussex as I grew up in Hailsham and we wanted to have something local to my family. As Candy was organising the second wedding in Hong Kong (where her family is from) it felt natural to do the wedding near my family and upbringing. The nearby Herstmonceux Castle was a natural choice!

Inspiration came from my childhood ambitions and dreams! There was fairytale fancy dress for the evening reception. The bride dressed as Tinkerbell and the groom as an American Indian. We had everything from Beauty and the Beast, Dorothy, Scarecrows, Red Riding Hood, Ghostbuster, Cleopatra, the kid and peacock from Up, knights, medieval ladies, monks, Mad Hatters, animals and so much more.

We chose a multi-coloured theme based on the colours of the balloons in the film Up. As a fan of the cartoon film ‘Up’ we tied lots of multi-coloured helium filled balloons onto a bench (in the film balloons they were tied to the house so it would float away). We than did a balloon release at the end of the day, where all the guests released a balloon!

Doing things differently

My good friend Suptasree acted up as ‘Lady Roy’. Despite no previous experience, she dressed up in medieval attire and carried out our blessing. She also put together the blessing for us! While, my best man also dressed up as a medieval gentleman and pretended to be the Lord of Herstmonceux (as he is French!).

We had a bay winged hawk called Ash, deliver the rings and we also took inspiration from the old English tradition of Jumping the Broom, whereby jumping over a broom as a couple signifies you are married, as our blessing!

Candy arrived at the castle by car and then horse and carriage. Historical musicians provided music for the bridal procession and two pieces of singing/lute during the ceremony. We wrote the blessing script and our vows. A hawk delivered the rings (not too willingly!) to the best man. We had an ‘archer’s salute’ when we exited the castle for photos.

Whilst we had our photos, there was a falconry display, have a go archery and horse and carriage rides. For those who wanted to stay indoors there was the Memory Room to explore – filled with photos of our friends and family. I also printed out 400 photos of our friends from our photo collection (hidden on our computer for years) for guests to take away. It also had a candy corner and toys for those young at heart.

We enjoyed a sit down meal. There were speeches and also music from the historical musicians. At the end. we all did a rendition of ‘Don’t look back in Anger’. We cut our cake in the shape of Herstmonceux Castle with a medieval style sword. We then exited the castle for throwing of the bouquet and balloon release, before starting the evening’s celebrations!

Getting crafty

As the castle is French inspired, I used genuine French first day covers from the 1960s-80s and printed onto them for invites. They were £30 for over 100 on eBay! I used multi-coloured tissue paper for the confetti and made my mum cut it up! While one of my dad’s oil paintings was used for the seating plan, by hanging ribbons across it, then adding pegs. For place names, I used little plastic ducks (again from eBay) and bought an alphabet set of rubber stamps in balloon shapes. We stamped the names onto a label and tied it to the duck.  [CLICK TO READ MORE]

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A Vintage Travel-Themed Big Day at Bartholomew Barn, West Sussex ~ Candice & James

There’s nothing as lovely as a big day that truly tells a story and reflects on a couple’s ‘journey’ so far – cue Candice and James’ beautiful travel-influenced wedding at St John the Baptist Church, Kirdford and Batholomew Barn, both in West Sussex, which took place last June.

This travel-loving duo met in Australia, went exploring for a year as a couple and came back home to settle down. Cute, eh? But Australia and their love of world-wide adventures have stayed with them and of course, they just had to incorporate this, and so much more into their delightful dream day!

Here’s bride Candice to tell us more:

We arrived within days of each other in Australia. I had managed to get myself a job at the local BP Garage and happened to be having a post work drink in the Kimberley Klub – the hostel that James was staying at with his friend Luke. After initially dismissing James for his youthful looks (surely he can’t be older than me?!) I gave in to his charms…we then spent the next year travelling together before coming back home to become ‘responsible adults’… and the rest is history!

The proposal came after booking a last minute trip to Venice, as James, for some reason, just couldn’t wait for our planned trip to Paris a month later. Despite a few hints from friends, I didn’t have a clue – this was confirmed with James telling me quite firmly on the boat into town, not to get my hopes up (how romantic). A day running around the beautiful streets of Venice, drinking wine and gorging on food ended with James on one knee – yes with tears in his eyes! This made it the happiest day of my life and now we get to share celebrating our marriage with you all and I am so excited to do so.

We chose to get married in Sussex as we wanted an informal relaxed day set in the beautiful English countryside that wasn’t too far from our home counties of Surrey and Kent. The venue is what won us over with the stunning barn and courtyard. It blew our breath away and our guests are still talking about it!

We wanted to theme our wedding on where we met – a small town called Broome in Western Australia. We then travelled around Australia in a camper van, which was what we used for our wedding car. To make the theme ‘prettier’ we added a vintage touch. The map of Australia which we used for our table plan was vintage. We used delicate English flowers to represent the colours of Western Australia.


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A Garden Themed Double Sussex Wedding ~ Danielle & Richard

As you know, here at Love Sussex Weddings, we ruddy love a local wedding. So, when Danielle & Richard’s stunning spring weddings (yes that’s right two weddings!) landed in our inbox, we just had to share them.

Tying the knot in a small ceremony at Brighton’s iconic Pavilion and then having a church blessing the following day for over two hundred friends and family with dreamy Wakehurst Place, Ardingly reception, this loved-up duo certainly know how to celebrate! Oh and of course, our beautiful bride had a gorgeous dress for each day too.

Here’s Danielle (and hubby Richard) to tell us all about their action packed proposal, stag night injuries and having two May wedding days: [CLICK TO READ MORE]

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