Earliest records of Braxted Park were of a deer park in 1342. The present Queen Anne Country House was built in 1680, and is very photogenic with red brick, sash windows and a solid wood front door framed by stone pillar posts. It undertook major renovations in the 1950’s and then again in 2004 when it became the luxury Essex wedding venue it is today.
Braxted House has instant impact as you approach it along a sweeping driveway and get your first glimpse of the majestic house. Behind it lies a secret walled garden, an enchanting pavilion and a stunning orangery. All of which make amazing backdrops when I shoot Braxted Park wedding photography.
Outside there are two large lakes that are a draw for wild fowl, rare birds and exotic fish. Whilst, a premier Essex wedding venue, Braxted Park also boasts a cookery school, a golf club, corporate hospitality and regular partridge shoots.
Your day starts by having the perfect space to pamper and unwind in Braxted Park’s bridal changing rooms. Spacious and stylish with lots of long mirrors, there’s enough room for you, your bridal party, your hairdresser, makeup artist and one unobtrusive wedding photographer there to capture those all-important bridal preparation images. Helpfully, the bridal changing room is just a few short steps through the Lantern Room to the Orangery, where many couples choose to have their wedding ceremony.
Licensed to hold civil ceremonies, Braxted Park offer a number offer three very different spaces when it comes to wedding ceremonies.
You can choose to get married in their elegant orangery. Bright and airy, this luxurious space has magnificent arched windows that throw tons of natural light into the room. Us Essex wedding photographers are always thrilled with any additional light that we play with to create beautiful images. The hand painted frescos bring the beautiful garden inside.
Or you can choose to get married in Braxted Park’s very own parish church All Saints Great Braxted, that sits within the grounds. This historically rich and pretty church dates back to 1042 and can be accessed by a pleasant lakeside stroll from the main house.
Lastly, you can choose to have an outdoor ceremony in the beautiful and tranquil secret garden. Where you can enjoy your ceremony on a carpet of white rose petals and say ‘I do’ in a pretty gazebo in front of your family and friends. Or in the Lower Walled Knott Garden, which has a pretty and contemporary summer house structure that is perfect for a wedding ceremony.
Afterwards, enjoy an elegant cocktails and canapes reception in the walled garden with its tranquil water features and blooming flowerbeds. Or in colder months, enjoy warm Pimm’s and mulled wine in front of a roaring fire in the main house.
For wedding reception spaces Braxted Park offer a number of elegant rooms depending on the size and style of your wedding. The impressive Pavilion is located in the gardens, and is a grand, contemporary and versatile space, capable of accommodating wedding parties of all sizes. It comes with its own dancefloor, bar and state of the art lighting and sound system.
For larger celebrations a marquee can be erected in the gardens. When I shoot wedding photography at Braxted Park, I love seeing the venue all dressed and ready to go. It always gives me a fizz of excitement.
When it comes to your wedding breakfast the talented chefs at Braxted Park will work with you to create the perfect wedding menu using the finest and fresh ingredients to create delicious dishes that will really impress your guests. Whether you’re looking for fine dining, fusion, banquets or something more informal.
Braxted Park wedding photography
When I shoot wedding photography at Braxted Park, after the wedding breakfast when guests are just milling about, I love whisking my couples into the secret garden few minutes to do a mini photoshoot just before the sun sets. As this is when the light is at its lowest and softest creating the perfect conditions for romantic portrait images.
Braxted Park allow couples to book on a venue only or dry hire basis. This is extremely rare for a wedding venue of this calibre. This frees couples up to choose their own caterers to supply food, cutlery, crockery, glassware and linen. This, and the fact that the venue can hold up to 350 guests, makes Braxted Park the ideal wedding venue for Asian, Caribbean and Jewish weddings. The day rate includes exclusive use of the gardens, grounds and wedding facilities. When you book on a venue only or dry hire basis, you can also still take advantage of Braxted Park’s wedding planning service to ensure that everything runs smoothly on the day.
Braxted Park wedding photography with Mark Seymour
If you’re planning an epic party on the night of your wedding then Braxted Park know just how to throw one! They are skilled at delivering delicious food at your wedding party. Choose anything you want from gourmet burgers, to a hog roast, a BBQ or tempting tapas! And at the end of the night guests can happily flop into one of Braxted Park’s luxury en-suite rooms meaning that the party doesn’t need to end at the stroke of midnight!
The experienced wedding team at Braxted Park will guide you through every decision and choice for your wedding, helping you with their knowledge of the wedding industry, of wedding suppliers and of course, of the venue. So much so, that when the day comes, you can be fully focused on enjoying your day knowing that your wedding is in safe hands.
When I shoot wedding photography at Braxted Park, I love capturing outdoor images after the sun goes down. The house is subtly lit at night, and the lines of trees have fairy lights that blend into the star filled sky to create a romantic and magical vibe perfect for a wedding celebration.
So, if you’re considering getting married and/or having your wedding reception at Braxted Park, I hope this has been helpful to you. Braxted Park really is a stunning wedding venue but don’t just take my word for it. The best thing about planning a wedding is getting to visit stunning wedding venues in beautiful places so have fun with it.
And when you’ve found your perfect Essex wedding venue, you’ll be looking for an experienced Essex wedding photographer. Feel free to get in touch.
I’d love to hear about your wedding plans.
Real wedding interview – Tasha and Adam’s wedding at Braxted Park
I loved the little ‘biogs’ that you wrote about the wedding party, but how did you two meet and was Adam’s proposal a surprise?
We met on a date; our maid of honour used her speech to embarrass us by reading out all our earliest emails to each other. We’re both very passionate about social justice and the Guardian reading part of our dating profile seemed to bring us together!
After 5 years Adam’s proposal wasn’t a complete surprise (!) but I wasn’t expecting it on my birthday which is a day I’ll never forget!
You said that you had to wait as Josh (Tasha’s brother) had a long engagement, tell me about how you planned your day and what was important for you?
I’m generally pretty organised so I had a timeline of things to do each month leading up to the day but both of us decided the most important thing for us when planning the day was how we could make it be about our friends and family. That was much more important than the minutiae of the day. We wanted it to feel personal to us – so writing the notes to all our friends and all the biogs for the bridal party was key. Also Tasha is known to be obsessed with treasure hunts so we incorporated one into the drinks reception to help guests pass the time and see more of the beautiful venue.
I’ve been lucky enough to photograph a few weddings at Braxted Park, it has some beautiful gardens for bridal portraits. We got some wonderful photos of Tasha and Adam through the arched gate frames with the canopy of the garden, and using the House and lake as a backdrop.
Tasha and Adam how did you find Braxted Park for your wedding venue?
Tasha’s aunt was actually the one who came across the venue online. We ideally wanted a venue we hadn’t been to before, we always knew we wanted it to be a more informal (no tie) outdoor venue and we wanted to sleep over night there. It’s harder to find venues to accommodate the different parts of a Jewish wedding, with capacity for all guests for ceremony, reception and dinner but we loved the venue as soon as we saw it.
Tasha you had very distinctive floral arrangements to dress the Chuppah and wedding tables; how involved did you get involved in selecting the flowers and the designs?
I knew I would use Miri as our florist as she did such an amazing job at my brother’s wedding last year. I wanted something quite rural and informal with bold colours but really struggled to find a high centrepiece. My best friend found a beautiful one on Pinterest and Miri copied it. We loved it!
We took some photographs of Tasha and her bridesmaids as they got ready, I loved the girls in their matching dressing gowns, even Aunty and Mum were involved in the line-up.
Tasha you chose a very elegant gown
Your bridesmaids looked beautiful in teal gowns, and your Aunty and Mum both chose shades of blue for their outfits, did you go with them to get their outfits?
I wasn’t there when my aunt chose her dress although she sent me a picture but I was there with my mum when she chose hers. I thought she looked beautiful in it; it’s such a perfect colour.
I photograph many Jewish wedding both modern and orthodox, I have learnt about the different elements of the day; Tisch, Bedeken, the Chuppah, prayers.
The service was performed by a female rabbi, did you chose her because she is part of your local synagogue?
The ceremony was the part that Adam was really involved in. Rabbi Laura Janner Klausner isn’t a synagogue rabbi, she is the head rabbi for the Reform Movement. Adam always knew he wanted her to marry us as he has known her for many years and she has also come to know Tasha through Tasha’s job as a social worker. It was important we had a rabbi who knew us both but also who encapsulated our values of feminism, equality and social justice.
Tasha and Adam you adapted some of the wedding service; the tradition of the bedeken/veiling ceremony, was performed half way along the aisle, and instead of the bride walking around the groom, you took it in turns to walk around each other three times – can you tell me about the importance of your wedding ceremony?
Our ceremony was really important to us, we really enjoyed writing our own ketubah, with vows that felt particularly personal and loved having 7 of our friends and family members join us under the chuppah to read the blessings they had written on specific themes. We always knew we would circle each other and also loved working with Katie, our chazzan who is the musical director at Alyth Synagogue.
Tasha and Adam involved the people closest to them in their day, Tasha was walked down the aisle by her brother, and Adam’s younger brother was best man. Ushers, bridesmaids, witnesses and their ‘Sheva Brachot’ (seven blessings) were all chosen because of the important part they play in Tasha and Adam’s lives. I loved the little introductions to the wedding party that was on the guest’s chairs.
Tasha and Adam wrote individual messages for every guest which I thought was a really love touch to the wedding tables. Tasha also sent Adam a letter to read on the morning of their wedding.
The couple and guests and enjoyed themselves with all the traditional dancing you’d expect to see at a Jewish wedding, with the incredible music and singing of The Function Band. We got a great shots of the band performing with the full effect of the ambient lighting, using a 20mm lens up close and off camera Manfrotto led lighting.
Tasha and Adam tell me about the song you chose for your first dance?
This was a song we loved when we first heard it. Tasha is obsessed with Italy and so it seemed apt to have a duet that was half in Italian. The words are also really beautiful.