Trips like this make me love my job. I was in Wiltshire taking place on a styled shoot at the wedding venue of dreams, The Lost Orangery, and during the trip I got to visit the very special Castle Combe.
To bring something useful to the table, I will talk a little about the places I ate at and found lodgings, though you will have to forgive me, I didn’t get a picture of every place, so for some of the shout-outs my words will have to do!
The first day, I arrived at Battens Farm Cottages. I shared with a group of photographers whom I had never met before, and I’m delighted to say they were a marvellous bunch! I was first to arrive at the farmhouse and was surprised by a presence of cows that come right up to the property! It was a comfortable, homely stay and would return in a heartbeat, and between four of us, it was a bargain leaving some money to spare for some nice meals out and only a 10 minute drive from Castle Combe itself.
With a little time to kill, I decided to drive around Castle Combe, and spontaneously ended up at the Manor House. Pictured below, this plot of land holds buckets of history, including how Combe became Castle Combe! Once upon a time sat a Norman castle which eventually became beyond repair, and low behold, The Manor House since built in its place in the 14th century. Now, the medieval wonder is a luxury hotel and golf course. The gardens are pristine and perfect for weddings, especially those of a traditional nature.
There were some very cute terraced cottages built in the charming Cotswold stone that sits beside the manor, I think you can rent these and they’re seconds from the heart of Castle Combe. Walking distance is what you want when there’s ales and wine to be had in the local pub.
Whilst I waited for the group to all arrive, I indulged in a cheeky half pint in the little bar of the big hotel, and to my approval, jazz was quietly playing, and I polished it off in a cosy old armchair looking out the window at the grounds.
Once the gals arrived, I dropped off my bags at Battens Farm and then we all came back into the village where we had a large table waiting for us in The Castle Inn. We walked by the infamous honesty box, where you can help yourself to a bit of cake for a donation, that wouldn’t last long in my home town, cake would be demolished and the donation box with it. We arrived at the pub and oh my God I wanted to eat everything by this point and couldn’t decide what I wanted to eat. So what does one do? Order far too much, better too much than a FOMO! I ordered a Ploughman’s Platter to begin with to share with the group. Then I went wild and ordered a pie because they looked so insanely good. It was indeed too much, but I left knowing I had tasted what I wanted to. We all then headed home and shared some red wine in the farm house. I went to bed before everyone else as it is a must for me if I have an early start. I love my sleep!
The second day I woke up and breakfast has already been delivered downstairs. A simple lot of pastries and cereals. Coffee was what I headed straight to. Then it was time to pack bags and head to the Lost Orangery aka Euridge Manor for the styled shoot.
The Lost Orangery is a next level wedding venue which would suit both the traditional and the alternative bride. It even has its own mini lake and a little rowing boat for you to have a sail on. Rose filled gardens to roam in, and the most amazing artistic architecture that would take some time to describe. I am going to blog about the venue soon though when featuring the pictures from the shoot, so I won’t ramble on about this place just yet. Just for you, here’s a few sneak peeks for the vibes sake!
After all day photographing, I was totally pooped and absolutely no way did I want to drive home tired. So I treated myself to a bnb called The White Hart Ford. It was reasonably priced, and rooms newly refurbished with a modern industrial look. The food there was worth staying for all together. Wow wow wow. It escapes my memory what I ate I just remember scraping the plate wanting more. The English Breakfast the next morning was fantastic. Take ear plugs because you can hear the kitchen door below the room opening and shutting during busy periods. It’s in a fantastic location and not too far from all the Cotswold’s hotspots, so I would happily stay here again for the mouth-watering tastes and convenient location.
Finally it was the next morning when I felt fully rested and preparing to drive home, I was recommended to try out Daylesford Farm via my journey back.
I wish I had more time, and copious amounts of money to stay longer than I had gotten to. I treated myself to an organic lunch and a healthy virgin cocktail, and had a leisurely nose around the shop. There’s sooo much nice stuff, I purchased myself a copy of Remodelista’s book ‘The Organized Home’ – for anybody who likes the KonMari method I highly recommend this. The clothes shop has some ridiculously stunning garments but everything I liked was around the £500 mark and cash flow could not permit such wonders at the time. There’s also a spa providing interesting treatments that I would like to try (I’m thinking a birthday present to self could be in order). Another reason to return here is the workshops, from cooking to wreath making, there’s something for everyone.
I hope this can make somebody’s journey to Castle Combe a little easier. Perhaps a couple needing to research wedding venues and vendors in the area?!
I’m always interested to hear recommendations so do email me if you have any I should visit this year?
Thank you for reading!