Downs School

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, and the varying restrictions placed on guest numbers for wedding celebrations and the exact format of these events (no dancing, sit down dining only), we have taken care in revisiting our relationships with the fantastic range of venues in Bristol many of whom we have worked closely with for over a decade.  We hope to work with many of our venue friends soon, and we have selected some great options for your consideration as guidance becomes clear and plans can start to take place.

The benefits of working at venues are wide ranging, and gearing up for celebrations further into 2021 might mean continuing to embrace a different approach (as we already did for one couple in Summer 2020, read the portfolio piece here).  Whether it’s a completely micro-wedding (intimate and personal) or a flexible and nimble approach (working within any up to the minute guidance, and responsiveness to this at the core of your plans).  This doesn’t mean compromising on your dream – style, quality and wow-factor are the watch-words now – and Alastair Currie Events is excellently placed to make your plans a reality.  Whatever the roadmap for events looks like, we’re here for each and every client to get things moving and make things spectacular.

Venue hire at St George's Bristol

What about marquees?

Celebrations taking place within temporary structures (marquees, stretch tents) provide a great deal of flexibility for space and layout, and we look forward to getting back to these as and when we can – which enables us to build from the ground up to suit the brief.  You can read more about our ‘Stunning & Safe – Parties at Home‘ offering, which included structures, as per our blog post published July 2020.  But for now let’s focus on creative and impactful options for the venues that we love to work within in and around Bristol – and what they have to offer for upcoming events (weddings and, as we are able, Covid-secure private parties, anniversaries, birthday celebrations and corporate events).

Event staff serving champagne in front of a Chinese hat marquee

What about Covid?

We work closely with each venue and every supplier with regards adaptations for a safer environment for events to take place when restrictions ease, and we are completely committed to delivering a fantastic experience for all, especially after such a long time apart – we have your guests’ best interests in mind – and we are full of confidence and optimism about getting back to marking special occasions as soon as possible.  We’ve got lots of event, and Covid event experience, you can read more about our online & hybrid events plus our ‘Stunning & Safe – Parties at Home’ offering in full on our dedicated Covid page here.  We will follow all up to the minute guidance, and want to protect all of our team and your entire guestlist.

What if we can’t go ahead?

We appreciate these times still have an element of uncertainty, and we are happy to transfer any deposit paid to a future date within a 12 month period – working closely with our entire team for a smooth and efficient approach for everyone from our valued clients to our hard-working suppliers.  We have been firmly supporting all of our clients with postponed occasions for the past year, and we’re excited to celebrate with both them and new clients ahead.

So, what great venues are there in Bristol for Covid secure weddings?

Read on to find out more about our top picks for venues in Bristol and the surrounding area which could be the perfect fit for your occasion.  Everything listing below is subject to guidance and restrictions (such as guest numbers, capacity caps within venues, dining best-practice and entertainment options), but we hope to be able to come up with brilliant suggestions regardless!

  • The Downs School, Wraxall – Looking for complete flexibility, and a gorgeous garden backdrop?  This venue has a gorgeous tree-lined drive, a beautifully flat lawn for a marquee and a great dining room which can transformed for smaller events into a striking party space.  With the panelled Great Hall available for drinks receptions, and equipped with a cocktail bar and dancefloor for later, this is a fantastic option for guests looking for menu and drink flexibility and a short drive (20 minutes) from Bristol.  You can view the Downs’ School website for further images of the property & grounds.  Have a peek at our own venue profile we’ve written on our website, which includes links to past events & a gallery.
  • The Elmgrove Centre – A hidden gem in central Bristol, a fantastic space with lots of wonderful features and with a standard capacity for 200 guests it could be an incredibly impactful micro-wedding dining experience.  With wonderful acoustics we’d suggest an entertainment roster of acapella choirs and big-impact show tunes to entertain guests.  With a fully-equipped kitchen, we can be really flexible on menu.  Have a look at the Elmgrove Centre website for some initial images, and it’s definitely a venue for a show-round and some big ideas – we’re thinking fairy light canopies and every pillar wrapped in foliage with twinkling lights, long dining tables and gold stick-back chairs.
  • The Forge – Gorgeously rustic, beautifully stripped back and ready for an intimate party of wow-factor proportions.  This space is incredibly special, in a city centre location – perfect for some edgy night-time couples shots! – and we have all the skills and experience to deliver amazing menus (with chef on display – bit of theatre!) and some great entertainment and styling options.  Already a sure-fit hit for smaller occasions pre-pandemic, The Forge has some stunning images available to view on their website.
  • Bristol Cathedral – A wow-factor address and a beautiful space to enjoy!  Bristol Cathedral has a number of spaces available for event hire, and with its perfect location and amazing features it’s a great place to use for private dining and wedding celebrations.  Alastair Currie Events enjoys a great working relationship with Bristol Cathedral, supporting them with many of their own events, and we would be delighted to provide a spectacular occasion for any client there.  Some past images and further detail is on the venue profile we’ve written on our website.  You can view more on the Bristol Cathedral venue hire page.
  • Westbury On Trym Village Hall – A brilliant location for a wide range of special events, with beautiful vaulted ceilings and stained glass windows.  A fantastic location for wedding ceremonies taking place in the area to then enjoy for their reception, or for parties wanting a good deal of space to use as they wish.  The venue can be transformed with hired in furniture, lighting and dressing – and a great menu! – all things that Alastair Currie Events excel at.  We’d be thrilled to look at any number of events here.  Take a look at the Westbury on Trym Village Hall hire page for further detail, or have a look at what we’ve written on our venue profile.
  • Royal West of England Academy – One of our favourite Bristol spaces, and an incredibly individual venue in that the art on the walls really transforms the event experience.  With huge amounts of space for socially distanced events, and a high-level refurbishment plan in the works, this is a great venue for a wide range of events.  We look forward to getting back to regular events at the RWA Bristol soonest, and the Royal West of England Academy website provides a great deal of hire information.  Having delivered many past events at the venue we have a venue profile page for you to look at as well.
  • Merchants’ Hall – Stunning, atmospheric and polished.  We love Merchants’ Hall for a whole host of reasons, and the super long dining table is just one of them – along with the hidden secret garden.  A must-see space for those special dinners and important occasions.  With great pomp and circumstance the venue is a very impactful location.  The Merchants’ Hall website has further detail including layout plans.  Our venue profile includes some great snaps of the garden!
  • Bristol Harbour Hotel Sansovino Hall – This spectacular space is a fantastic backdrop for any event, and the Harbour Hotel team allow a dry hire of the space which means that all food, drink and staff can be brought in.  With plenty of capacity for any event size with social distancing in mind, and the ability to bring the room ‘in’ as well with clever furnishings, this is a super option for many events.  Visit the Bristol Harbour Hotel weddings page for more details.
  • Ashton Gate Stadium – A versatile and massive space, with complete Covid Secure operation second-nature to the onsite team, Ashton Gate enables many fantastic celebrations to take place within its various venue options.  Alastair Currie Events have delivered a number of special events at the venue, and would be very confident in hosting occasions there as soon as possible.  The Ashton Gate Stadium events page details the types of events that have previously been hosted to great success.
  • Penny Brohn – Located in Pill, near Bristol, this beautiful venue is surrounded by four acres of landscaped gardens and is a great space for events with the added benefit of extensive onsite accommodation (26 en-suite bedrooms).  The beautiful Garden Room is a great space for special events, and marquees on the flat lawn fit in perfectly with the lovely surroundings.  Alastair Currie Events has an excellent working relationship with the team at Penny Brohn, and we would be delighted to assist with any event delivery there which contributes to the funding of their work.  The Penny Brohn website has further detail and images.  We have some further images and detail on our venue profile page for Penny Brohn.
  • The Station – Located in central Bristol, The Station has a great outdoor courtyard and atmospheric main space (complete with full height firestation doors).  We have transformed this space for events previously, and the layout and airy nature of the space means it would be a fantastic option for a number of event requirements.  The Station’s website details both the work that they do and the spaces available.  You can see some further event snaps on our venue profile page.
  • St.Georges – A striking, stunning space which we have been thrilled to transform into many a fabulous party venue multiple times.  A truly beautiful space, with such a fantastic array of features.  We work closely with the team at St.Georges to deliver great events, and with plenty of space and some secret gardens available too, it’s a great choice for any event.  The St.Georges website has a selection of images and further detail.  We have a great range of photographs and detail on our venue profile page, and links to past event portfolio pieces too.
  • St. Michael on the Mount Without – A new venue, soon to be launched, and we cannot wait!  With lots of potential, lots of space and huge amount of character St. Michael on the Mount Without is sure to be a very special venue.  We would be delighted to work with clients at this spectacular new venue, and would encourage you to look at the images on our venue profile along with on St.Michael on the Mount Without’s own website & Instagram for a good ‘first look’.

If you’re looking for a partner to support you through your wedding or party planning journey, including all the advice possible about which venue to choose (!), we’d be delighted to help.  The above is not an exhaustive list, we’ve worked at many additional prestigious venues and also regularly work on private client sites across the South West.  You can view a wide selection of our past events on our portfolio page.  We work with every single client to pull together all hopes and dreams into a celebration where you as the client can fully relax and enjoy.  It’s what we’re here for!

Read more: How to plan a small wedding

Bristol Cathedral Dinner within the nave

Venue hire at St George's Bristol