"I Do" - Medway's Breathtaking Wedding Venues

From ships and Napoleonic forts to castles and houses of history, Medway is blessed with some truly breathtaking wedding venues.

So if you're a couple deciding where to tie the knot, look no further! From the intimate to the grand, from the historic to the contemporary, here's our guide to some of the amazing attractions where you can celebrate your big day. 

Upnor Castle

The ceremony room at Upnor

Upnor Castle

Situated on the banks of the River Medway, this attractive turreted castle is set in a picturesque village area backed by rolling, wooded hills.

Set your special day against a backdrop of almost 500 years of history in one of England's truly timeless places. 

Upnor Castle was originally built on the orders of Queen Elizabeth I in 1559 as a gun fort to defend her warships at anchor in the reaches of the Medway and Chatham Dockyard.

Upnor Castle's wedding room echoes the castle's historic past. Once a store for munitions, the powder-barrel seating is a novel addition for your wedding.

Accommodates: 80 people seated and 20 standing.

See website

Eastgate House

Eastgate House is a Grade I listed 16th Century town house and is one of the most impressive and distinctive buildings in Rochester’s historic high street.

The venue was an inspiration to the great author Charles Dickens featuring in The Pickwick Papers and The Mystery of Edwin Drood.

The splendid oak-panelled ceremony room features a gorgeous fireplace and offers a true sense of occasion.

Accommodates: 40 seated guests

See venue website

 

Eastgate staircase

Eastgate House ceremony room

Eastgate House

The Queens Hall

The romantic sweeping staircase

The Princes Hall

Rochester Corn Exchange 

Set in the heart of historic Rochester, and steeped in 18th Century history, The Rochester Corn Exchange is a luxury venue that offers a romantic and exclusive setting that will make your wedding day extra special.

The Rochester Corn Exchange is available for intimate wedding celebrations as well as private exclusive hire of the whole venue.

Have your wedding ceremony in either the Queens Hall, with its stunning architectural features such as high decorative ceilings, incredible chandeliers and ornate plasterwork or the Princes Hall for an intimate ceremony full of historic charm.

With opulent surroundings and historic architecture, The Rochester Corn Exchange provides the perfect setting for your special day.

The venue's dedicated wedding planning team will guide you through every stage of planning your big day. 

Visit venue website

 

The Guildhall, Rochester

Built in 1687, The Guildhall Museum is located in the heart of Rochester and is bursting with character and charm, creating a truly captivating setting for your ceremony.

It maintains its 17th Century design with magnificent painted plaster ceilings and large decorative oil paintings.

The stunning red-carpeted, sweeping staircase leads you to the chamber entrance where you will be spellbound by the grandeur of this historic venue.

The glittering chandeliers offer the perfect soft ambience for every ceremony.

Accommodates: 70 people seated and 20 standing

See venue website

Outside the Guildhall, Rochester

Commissioner's House Gardens. Photo: joellenpictures

Dockyard Slip. Photo: joellenpictures

HMS Gannet. Photo: James Allen Stewart

Historic Dockyard Chatham

For couples who are looking to tie the knot in Kent, The Historic Dockyard Chatham makes a unique wedding venue. The Dockyard offers a choice of four exclusive ceremony venues and a spectacular reception setting.

The Commissioner’s House, Britain’s oldest naval building, is an elegant Georgian-style house with a choice of stylish rooms to suit all party themes and sizes. The surrounding Commissioner’s Garden provides the perfect setting for drinks receptions and photographs.

Not many people can boast they were married on a ship! If you’re looking for a venue with a difference, at The Historic Dockyard Chatham you can say your vows aboard the magnificent and romantic Victorian sloop, HMS Gannet. Choose from the Commander’s Cabin, the Quarterdeck or the main deck for you and your guests. You certainly won’t be disappointed with the choice of backdrops for those first official photographs.

They say the best things come in small packages and the Dockyard's intimate, ceremony–only (COVID compliant) packages are currently very popular with couples.

Accommodates: From 15 to 250 guests

See venue website

Fort Amherst 

Fort Amherst Napoleonic Fort offers a truly unique and atmospheric venue for your wedding.

With a panoramic vista taking in the timeless meanders of the River Medway, and surrounded by 17th Century fortifications steeped in history, your delighted guests will be amazed by this fascinating venue.

There’s the magic of a candle-lit tunnel, deep within the Fort complex, and the recently-restored Grand Magazine, a historical building like no other.

Fort Amherst is fully licensed for civil ceremonies – giving you the opportunity to design a wedding day to be treasured and that you and your guests will remember fondly for many years to come.

Visit venue website

 

Fort Amherst

Fort Amherst

Fort Amherst

Cooling Castle Barn

Cooling Castle Barn

Cooling Castle Pavillion

Cooling Castle Barn

Cooling Castle Barn is an exclusive wedding venue in the beautiful grounds of Cooling Castle.

Ceremonies can be held in the romantic Fathom Barn or in the garden Pavilion. Alternatively, if it’s a church ceremony you prefer the pretty St James’ Church is a short stroll from the barns.

The glorious high-beamed Tithe Barn is a wonderful canvas for you to paint your own picture for your reception.

The venue also boasts the Heritage Barn for guest drinks before the ceremony, plus on-site guest accommodation, including Moat House Barn’s dressing room and bridal suite.

See venue website

 

 

The Vines Rochester

Just a few moments’ walk from the historic castle and cathedral of Rochester is the Old Archdeaconry, which has been lovingly restored in The Vines boutique hotel.

The Vines is a beautiful venue that creates a great sense of occasion for those most special of days. Your wedding will be organised by the venue's experienced weddings team from sister venue Cooling Castle Barn – leaving you to relax and enjoy the planning of your day knowing you are in safe hands.

With 13 individually-crafted bedrooms including a bridal preparation room, this exclusive use venue will create long lasting memories.

Accommodates 70-120 

See venue website

The Vines Rochester

The Vines Rochester

The Vines Rochester

The George Vaults

The George Vaults

The George Vaults

Just a short walk away from the ancient castle and cathedral through the historic cobbled streets, the George Vaults is the ultimate 14th Century wedding venue in the heart of Rochester.

Licensed for civil ceremonies and civil partnerships, and also offers wedding breakfast and evening reception packages in its 14th Century Vault. 

See venue website

There are many other venues that can host your wedding ceremony:

Rochester Cathedral - However, couples require a special license to demonstrate a significant connection to the Cathedral. 

Medway Register Office - Located in the heart of historic Rochester, there are two ceremony rooms for you to choose from. 

Bridgewood Manor Hotel - With a stunning courtyard and landscaped lawns, Bridgewood Manor 4* hotel provides a picturesque backdrop for your big day.

St George Hotel, Chatham - A family-run hotel with many years’ experience of helping to make couples' dreams come true.

Holiday Inn Rochester - Has eight function rooms suitable for up to 200 guests

Lordswood Centre - The Queen suites & Martin Grove suite are based inside Lordswood Leisure Centre which is set in 14 acres of beautiful woodland surroundings, catering for between 150 and up to 500 guests.