A ‘Home Tour’ of Wickham House

Written by Emma Hla
It’s hard to know where to start when I think about Wickham House… There is just too much goodness everywhere you look.

Earlier this year, I was a guest of Philippa & James, owners of this ridiculously handsome country house. As well as being taken on a superb guided tour, I sat in their kitchen, drank coffee and chatted about weddings.

Philippa is quite extraordinary, and I left feeling thoroughly inspired by this lady. I think I called her ruddy brilliant. With a long and successful career in the City, Philippa & James, alongside their Events Manager Isabel, are now pouring their energy and passion into their beautiful home and offering it to couples for their big day celebrations.


“Wickham House combines timeless elegance with the laid-back charm of Berkshire’s rural countryside. A stunning location for luxury marquee and tent weddings, Wickham offers a blank canvas to design a completely bespoke wedding with the spectacular backdrop of our family home. Whether you are planning an opulent affair or a celebration with a bohemian twist, Wickham House is the idyllic location…”

The Planning Process

The attention to detail at Wickham House is second to none, so it’s no surprise they work solely with Wedding Planners. They can recommend the right planner to enable your wedding day, and they will help you design your dream wedding alongside your chosen planner. Whether you want a lavish classic affair or a slightly more relaxed-bohemian weekend, they have excellent relationships with several different planners, all varying in style.

The Ceremony

You are spoilt for choice regarding the ceremony location at Wickham House, as there are three quite enchanting spots to choose from.

The Church

Next door, quite literally, is their charming Village Church. Surprisingly spacious, it can comfortably seat up to 200 guests! The privacy this Church offers is lovely, and there’s no need for your guests to travel from ceremony to reception at this venue. If you are not local to the area but still want this traditional element to your big day, you can attend the Church once a month for six months before the wedding day. There is also the option to host a civil ceremony within the estate or a registry office ceremony followed by a Blessing in the church.

The Walled Garden

Now, I’ve seen a fair few walled gardens in my time; indeed, I even chose a walled garden for my big day, BUT this has to be the best-walled garden… ever. The entrance, both grand and promising, absolutely mirrors what lies beyond. Designed and lovingly crafted by Philippa & James, this Walled Garden was my highlight of the venue tour. The garden provides a spectacular yet intimate setting for a wedding ceremony, and the Pagoda is licensed for Civil Ceremonies for up to 200 guests seated on the sunken lawn. Within this magical setting, you can also find a stunning pool, a pavilion and gorgeous gardens galore. I could honestly have stayed here all day!

The Barn

As if Wickham House didn’t offer enough, there’s The Barn, a wonderfully cosy wet weather option for a Civil Ceremony. It can accommodate 125 guests seated theatre style, or for larger parties, a small marquee can extend the space to cover the terrace directly outside the sliding doors.

The Reception

You can host your entire wedding day at Wickham House; after the vows have been said and you’ve kissed your newly acquired husband or wife, you and your guests can move seamlessly onto your drinks reception. The drawing room terrace allows the handsome building to act as your backdrop, and guests can spill out onto the formal lawn overlooking the marquee site and the downs beyond. If you’re smitten with the Walled Garden, you can stay in this location and move from the Ceremony, through the gardens, to the Pavilion and pool. On a hot summer day, it would be a slice of Miami cool in the heart of the Berkshire countryside.

If you’re having a slightly smaller, more intimate wedding, there is also the option of hosting your guests in the Dining and Drawing Rooms within the Main House; you and your guests would arrive at the front door of the house and make your way through the hall to these two stunning rooms, one filled with period paintings, and the other with modern art. These rooms open onto old York stone terraces, an idyllic setting on a glorious day.

The Marquee Site AND suppliers

Wickham House was made for a marquee wedding. The Marquee site is spectacularly positioned in the most scenic part of the grounds and super close to the house for your guests, basically just a hop across the ha-ha!

As with everything, Philippa & James have put in careful thought and consideration when creating their marquee location. On the tour, I was given a detailed run-down of all the work that had been undertaken preparing the marquee site for weddings. Sometimes, these details aren’t passed on to the couples, but their thoughtful planning has made this an easy, fuss-free and superb spot for your chosen marquee.

And what marquee will you choose…? They believe every wedding should uniquely reflect your personal preferences as a couple. So Wickham House doesn’t provide a permanent marquee structure, meaning you are free to choose the style of marquee most suited to your day. Their principal marquee partner is Covered Occasions, but they also work with and recommend several exciting, unusual (and cheaper) options. We love the divine Indian tents by Raj Tents, the Bamboo tents by Ascot Structures, the Orangerie and Grand Pavilion by LPM Bohemia, and the Tipis and Sailcloth traditional tents by Creative Structures. They do have something for everyone and every style of wedding!

Bridal Preparation

Aside from actually marrying my husband, the part of my wedding day I loved the most was the getting ready ritual. It was perfect. This is where Wickham House have it so right. Within the Main House are two beautifully decorated guest rooms offering the perfect backdrop for those ‘getting ready’ photos. If you use these rooms on the morning of your wedding, you can wander into their large, warm and oh-so-friendly family kitchen. You’ll find everything you need, including bloody good coffee and some moral support if required!

The barn is the other location quite similar to my wedding day prep area. Here, you can relax, giggle, have room for a quiet moment, and get ready with your closest friends & family. With the ambience of a luxurious ski chalet, the barn is situated just 30m from the Main House. It has a large changing area upstairs complete with a dressing table and cheval mirrors and downstairs a shower room, a sitting room area with open log fire, a bar and a kitchen where you can help yourself to refreshments of a caffeine or alcoholic nature!

I know that Philippa has also checked out the best spots local to Wickham House, so you may prefer to book the luxurious bridal suite at a nearby five-star hotel, The Vineyard and arrive at the venue in style.

Rehearsal Dinner

A trend we’ve picked up from our American friends, the Rehearsal Dinner is an optional extra at Wickham House. The Barn is a beautiful spot for an intimate family dinner the night before the big day. They can provide you with a choice of menus ranging from simple and homely to genuinely exceptional. The Barn has a piano, an excellent music system and a large TV and has been described by many as the best small party space you could imagine.

your Photography

When you hire Wickham House, you have both the Walled Garden and the Main House, both perfect in different ways for your wedding photography – from couple shots to formal family shots; you couldn’t ask for more. One location I particularly loved was in The Library; it has an incredible gothic alcove built (in 1865) entirely of stone. When I popped into this room, the light was just magical, and I know you and your photographer will have lots of fun seeking out those alternative shots.


Don’t let the grand nature of this venue fool you. Wickham House is a place of celebration, which can also mean something more unique. If boho is your thing, why not look at their new Glamping option? You’ve got the tipi in place; why not plan an entire village of Bell Tents for your guests to sleep in? They can fit 25 beautiful tents at the end of Oak Avenue, a picturesque setting to wake up to and an instant cure for any fluffy heads the morning-after-the-night-before.

The Bell Tents are luxury with real beds, cotton duvets, pillows and blankets, so you’ll get the best night’s sleep possible. They have also included toilets & showers in the village to create the best possible stay.

So what do you think…? Pretty impressive, right…?

I absolutely know you’ll get the same flutter of excitement I did when I reached the gates and made my way down their long driveway. The moment the house comes into view is something else. Only you lot get to marry here! *not jealous at all face*

You can check out the listing for Wickham House right here. We have all the finer details, including some costs for you. If you’ve seen enough, you can email Philippa or Isabel at enquiries@wickhamhouse.com.

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