• DJ James Stephens

5 Awesome Party Venues Near Bristol to Have Your Wedding at

When organising the most special day of your life, there's an awful lot to consider. Sometimes, couples don't put too much thinking in to the evening party, as they may be really focused on planning the ceremony and breakfast (which is totally understandable).

It may come as a surprise, but there are many components to a wedding venue which can help improve the evening party. I.e. it's not just your Wedding DJ/Band that shapes the night. Such components include:

  • Staff: the people ensuring your every need is met. It's very common for a wedding to run over timings. Often, the DJ won't be able to start at the originally proposed time because the speeches may still need to be done, for example. A well-organised team can help reduce delays and make sure everything runs on time. Fun, energetic and happy staff will be noticeable, and little things like going to get a drink from the bar will complement your overall experience.

  • The Party Room: there's a few structural elements to a room, which can actually have a profound impact on the quality of sound. Big, airy and open rooms often cause the sound to 'echo', which isn't the best. I often find that more intimate rooms which feel more 'sound-proofed' create a better experience. However, as you'll notice below, there are exceptions to the rule! Rooms that have dimmer lights can create a much better "look" as you can adjust the light to compliment the disco lights. Some wedding venues have the bar in the same room as the disco. Other venues have the bar in a separate room. Personally I prefer having the bar in the same room, as this encourages all guests to be in the same room. This factor doesn't necessarily impact the effectiveness of the party, but having everything in one room keeps the party in one place. Some venues have sound limiters, which means the DJ/band can only go so loud. I've DJ'd a few venues which have a sound limiter, but it has never been a problem. Another element is integrated sound and lighting. It isn't common to find built-in sound and lighting at a wedding venue, but some venues do. Elmore Court in Gloucester does, and it does it very well (read on to find out more about Elmore Court).

  • The Curfew: most venues will have to stop music at 12am, due to licensing. However, some venues may allow music to go on longer. It's worth asking your venue when booking! What I would say is that most wedding parties only require a 12am finish because most guests are pretty tired by then. But if your guests are party animals, then definitely look at venues which allow a 1/2am finish (or dare I say it, even later).

  • Accommodation: most wedding venues will have rooms available for a fair few of your guests. This will encourage them to let-loose, knowing they don't have very far to get to their bed! There are still amazing venues which don't have accommodation available, such as Priston Mill in Bath. They provide information on local B&B's available. Even though they don't have accommodation, the overall experience more than makes up for it. It's one of my favourite venues to DJ at.

Without further ado, here are 5 awesome party venues to have your wedding at (in no particular order):

Stanton Manor Hotel, Chippenham

Website: https://www.stantonmanor.com/


If you live on the east side of Bristol, it's arguably quicker getting to Chippenham than it is venturing into Bristol city centre. If you're from Bristol, you know how bad the traffic can be!

The evening party is positioned in the Woodland Suite. It almost feels like you are in a living room of a mansion, which is a good thing. This makes the evening party feel intimate and close by at all times.

The Woodland Suite

This is the only Wedding venue I've ever DJ'd at where they hire a smartly dressed security person to overwatch everything (hats off to you Stanton Manor). This is honestly a fantastic addition, and I am so surprised that no other wedding venues do this. It almost feels like all other wedding venues rely on the DJ and their staff to take control if things go wrong (i.e. rowdy behaviour, not abiding the curfew, damaging property etc.). Having the security person there at Stanton Manor brought a great sense of reassurance to me and the staff. It actually allowed me to be concentrate on my mixing better. In no way did it feel imposing to the guests. The security person was dressed smartly, were positioned discretely, and would only 'pop up' if required.

The staff at Stanton Manor were really friendly and sociable. This made all interactions an enjoyable experience. Guests would definitely appreciate a happy bar for sure!

At some venues, the evening party is in the same venue as the wedding breakfast. Logistically, it isn't the best because the DJ can't setup until the guests have finished their food and speeches, leaving them to wait for an hour until the DJ has set up. Fortunately, the wedding breakfast at Stanton Manor is situated in a different room, allowing guests to seamlessly transition from their meal to the dancefloor!

Owlpen Manor, Dursley

Website: https://owlpen.com/

Owlpen Manor, Dursley

Owlpen Manor is a Tudor Grade I listed manor house in the village of Owlpen in the Stroud area of Gloucestershire, England, owned by the Mander family.

This is venue holds the award for cheeriest staff in my eyes! From the moment I arrived to the moment I left, the staff were so friendly and welcoming. It was clear to see the guests thought this too.

I would argue that 90% of Weddings I DJ at, the schedule runs behind. Fortunately, at Owlpen, this wasn't the case. All of the staff were well organised, which allowed me to start DJ'in at 7pm. I can vouch this happens for every wedding, but I definitely think they run on time for the majority of weddings, because I was very impressed by the staff.

The Barn at Owlpen Manor
The Barn at Owlpen Manor

I DJ'd in The Barn, which was a very charming, rustic room. It's a fantastic room for partying, due to it's quaint, petite appearance. Here's a clip from when I last DJ'd there.

Owlpen Manor, undoubtedly picturesque.

Elmore Court, Gloucester

Website: https://www.elmorecourt.com/

Elmore Court is a grade II listed mansion in the Stroud area of Gloucestershire, England, located in Elmore. The original building was constructed between 1564 and 1588.

Elmore Court is on my list for a multitude of reasons. Aside from the fact it is absolutely stunning, the party room can't be beaten!

I don't think I can summarise it better than Elmore Court themselves:

"In many ways The Gillyflower exists for music... it’s there so people locally won’t be disturbed. And as our roots are on the dancefloors of music festivals, it would be rude not to have state of the art sound and lights... Music can be played through either or both of our sound systems. With direct support and design from who we think is possibly the best sound company on the planet, Funktion One, we really do have the capability for excellent, clear and, if you desire, loud sound. And our lights are cutting edge too... A discreet but highly controllable digital LED lighting system sits in the ceiling above the dancefloor, the whole space has mood controlled LED luminaires and then, of course, there’s "The Lightshower" that was installed by one of the world's most respected lighting artists - Bruce Monro.

This is something different."

To put simply, if you are looking for a guaranteed ultimate party vibe, this is the place to be.

The Great Tythe Barn, Tetbury

Website: https://www.gtb.co.uk/

There's a reason it was the 2020 winner of The Best Countryside Wedding Venue in the South West. Another stunning venue, with accommodation for 90 guests, The Great Tythe Barn has been sympathetically restored, retaining many of its original features such as exposed stone walls and wooden oak beams while also incorporating 21st Century conveniences such as underfloor heating, tastefully decorated washrooms, wooden flooring, atmospheric lighting, and tall glass entrance doors that allow plenty of natural light and views of the courtyard.

The Great Tythe Barn really is one of those wedding venues you can definitely call 'magical'. During the long hot summer nights, the entire vibe is spot on, due to scenic surroundings, the sunset, the really appealing interior (especially for uplighting) and the most important thing - dancing the night away.

Priston Mill, Bath

Website: https://www.pristonmill.co.uk/

The Tythe Barn at Priston Mill

Priston Mill comprises of 2 wedding venues on one luscious site, on the outskirts of Bath. Both venues ooze unique qualities, that make Priston Mill a fantastic place to party the night away.

The Tythe Barn, the bigger of the two venues, is a remarkable stone walled barn, which dates from the 1720s, and has been meticulously repaired and conserved to make a wonderful place for special occasions. Wedding receptions, civil ceremonies, and civil partnerships are all possible.

Like The Great Tythe Barn at Tetbury, Priston Mill has this stunning charm to it, which is especially apparent during the summer months. The indoor setting in the Tythe Barn is perfect for a banging party. It's hard to explain without being at a party there, but for me it's the unique charm to it that really brings it alive. The addition of uplights and the right disco lights really add to it. Perhaps chuck in some dry ice (aka dancing on clouds) and some confetti, and you might just have the wedding of your dreams...

View From the Balcony, Inside the Tythe Barn

The Watermill is a cheaper alternative, perhaps due to its smaller capacity.

The Watermill at Priston Mill

Nonetheless, The Watermill is one of a kind. It's spread across 3 floors, with the original waterwheel on the ground floor, bar on the first floor, and ceremony/reception room on the second floor.

The lovely private gardens and the spectacular vision of the rolling countryside beyond will capture you and your guests as you approach the grounds of the Watermill. A tiny creek flows beside the grounds, which have wooden sitting on groomed grass, a charming pagoda, perfect for outdoor wedding celebrations, and a lovely pergola.

For your night time celebration, the Watermill can seat up to 120 people, and with music reverberating from within and the terrace tastefully flood-lit, this is a particularly lovely setting. The celebration flows out onto the wooden terrace, where everyone can take in the magnificent views of the millpond and gardens.

An amazing offer we currently have on... If you book the 5 hour Wedding Package, you will receive 3 free confetti shots - a fantastic addition to your wedding party, worth £90! Offer ends 31st January 2022. Book here.