Jan 28

Hiring Hall or Function Room Reception – Wedding Preparation

Hiring Hall or function room will allow you more space and flexibility than holding the reception at home, whilst giving you plenty of scope to add your own personal touches. It provides the opportunity to self-cater or use professional caterers and is generally less costly than a hotel.

Refer to Checklist 25 ‘Reception – Hall or Function Room’
How to Choose a Hall or Function Room
□ Decide what size room(s) you require, depending on the style of reception and number of guests
□ Identify several suitable venues
• personal experience
• recommendation
• advertisement
• website
□ Establish their availability on the date you require
□ Enquire about the basic cost and size of room
□ Arrange to visit them looking for these points:
• decor
• kitchen facilities (you may need to consider the feasibility of hiring a mobile kitchen)
• cloakroom and toilet facilities
• availability of car parking space
□ Confirm availability with the manager:
• date
• time
• room(s)
□ Arrange a meeting with the manager to discuss your requirements.

Number of Guests
• Reception
• Evening reception
• Ascertain when the final numbers are required
• Enquire whether a wedding package is available and, if so, what it includes

Hire Charges
• Discuss hire charges for the room(s)
• Check whether there are any other weddings on the same day
• Enquire whether there is a Charge for exclusive use of the venue

• Ascertain whether there will be any time restrictions
• Discuss the timings:
• access for decoration and preparation
• access for caterers
• arrival of guests
• evening reception
• entertainment
• bar closes
• finish
• access for Clearing away Food and Drink
• Advise type of food to be served
• Advise the manager of your catering arrangements (Professional or self-catering)
• Check the rules regarding the consumption of alcohol
• Discuss bar facilities (free drinks or a pay bar)

• Discuss seating arrangements, room layout, position of the cake table and any tables required
for displaying or serving food
• Establish the quantity and quality of the venue’s furniture (consider hiring tables and chairs, if
• Determine whether an evening reception will necessitate a different room layout
• Check on food preparation area and refrigeration
• Discuss arrangements if you wish to display your wedding gifts
• Ask whether they can be kept in a safe place before and after the reception
• Advise your delivery and collection arrangements for the gifts
• Enquire about the Provision of a marquee, if required – see ‘Marquees’
• Ask whether a public address system is available for the speeches
• Check on lighting, heating and Ventilation
• Enquire whether a changing room is available
• Check on cloakroom and toilet facilities
• Check that there is adequate car parking space
• Check that there is easy access for any elderly or disabled guests
• Enquire about fire regulations and fire exits
• Check the venue has insurance cover for public liability

• Discuss any plans you have to decorate the hall or room Entertainment
• Establish whether entertainment is permitted
• If so, discuss your plans for a disco/live band/entertainment – see ‘Entertainment’
• Check on lighting, power supply and changing facilities
• Discuss background music playing during the meal, if required

• Discuss the estimated total cost and ascertain whether VAT has been included in the prices
• Request a detailed estimate in writing
• Confirm acceptance in writing and enclose the required deposit

One week before
• Telephone or call round to check final arrangements
• Confirm the final numbers and seating arrangements
• Prepare seating plan and write place name cards

Day before
• Decorate the hall or room
• Deliver wedding gifts, flowers, seating plan, place name cards and any necessary items

Checklist 25 Reception – Hall or Function Room
Email Website
Contact Date booked
No. of Guests Adults Children
Details of Hire Charges
Access for prepn./decn. Entertainment
Access for caterers Bar closes
Arrival Finish
Evening reception Access for Clearing away
Licensing rules
Bar facilities
Room layout
Tables and chairs
Food preparation area
Display of gifts
Public address System
Lighting, heating and Ventilation


Checklist 25 Reception ~ Hall or Function Room (Cont.)
Changing room Cloakroom and toilet facilities Car parking
Public liability insurance


Clearing Away
Total cost £ Cancellation fee £
Deposit £ Date paid
Balance £ Date paid
Date of confirmation (sent/received)

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