Bride and Groom Together

Catherine & Jay

Goldney Hall | Bristol

Goldney Hall Wedding Photography

Catherine and Jay married at Goldney Hall, an exclusive-use venue with walled gardens in heart of Bristol.

They started the reception early, which is actually the best little-known secret for keeping the party going for longer.

While I was outside waiting for my Uber, I overheard the manager talking to someone in his thick Irish accent on his mobile that the wedding reception had drunk the venue dry!

Is Goldney Hall the perfect wedding venue in the heart of Bristol?

You wouldn’t know it was there unless you’ve been there before or stumbled on it searching for a Bristol wedding photographer.

The Orangery at Goldney Hall is the hidden gem within Bristol’s famous Clifton Village (known for its Georgian architecture and unique shops) and offers an intimate vibe and light-drenched rooms. The pretty walled gardens give a sense of not being in the centre of bristol at all.

If you don’t read any further, know this. It feels very private, it’s good for dancing. The food was the best I had this year, and the manager really seems like he wants you to have the best time.

The hall occupies part of the grounds of Goldney House, built in the 18th century and remodeled in the 1860s. The house and several garden features are listed structures, and they designated the garden Grade II on the Register of Historic Parks and Gardens. It has beautiful surrounds on the Georgian and Victorian buildings, manicured gardens and a shell-studded grotto, an ornamental canal, statues, and a fully restored rotunda. And wisteria covers half the building.

Sound like a lovely place to get married?

It is.

That it is in central Bristol is the icing on the cake.

Where is it?

Goldney Hall is in the heart of Clifton, Lower Clifton Hill, overlooking the city of Bristol and Brandon Hill. It’s next to the University of Bristol. It’s a bitch to park around there, so make sure you’re organised on the transport front. Staying in Clifton gives you easy access to Clifton Village, Whiteladies Road, Bristol Zoo, and The Downs.

Goldney Hall History

The history part (skip this if history isn’t your thing.)

In 1664, Thomas Goldney, a successful grocer, leased what was then a country house in Clifton now known as Goldney Hall. Then, in 1705, purchased the Goldney estate for £100. Just had to google how much that is in today’s money. Wait for it….£24,110. Seems reasonable. House prices today are not.

The Goldney family were Quakers, and they seemed to be shrewd investors.

  • They ponied up a lot of the money for Captain Woodes Rogers voyage on The Duke and its sister ship The Dutchess. Rogers’ crew rescued the real-life Robinson Crusoe, Alexander Selkirk, from Juan Fernandez island.
  • Investment in the Coalbrookdale Iron Works, led to Thomas Goldney III becoming the majority owner of the works.
  • Co-founding Goldney, Smith, and Co., one of the first banks in Bristol and now part of the Royal Bank of Scotland.

Goldney’s son, Thomas Goldney III designed the gardens and orchards. Alfred Waterhouse, who also designed the Natural History Museum, altered and extended the house in 1864–65. The house was then passed down to other wealthy Bristol families, the Wills and the Frys. Lewis Fry (1832–1921) became the Liberal MP for Bristol and the first chairperson of the University of Bristol University Council.

So what’s on offer for a wedding at Goldney Hall?

Outdoor Ceremonies!

Yup, get married outside, I’m a total fanboy and swoon over every single outdoor ceremony.

Civil Ceremonies

The Mahogany Parlour in Goldney House is fully licensed for a civil ceremony option for 40.

Bristol has loads of churches to get married in and Bristol is pretty easy to navigate using Uber or taxis.

The Orangery

With full-length French doors which lead directly out to the gardens, it has that nice feeling of being connected to nature while being inside. Super easy to get in and out of. It’s a light room that’s well suited to weddings. There’s also a little dressing room that is available and is perfect for you and your bridal party or guests to freshen up throughout the day. It’s fully fitted out with a nice bathroom and full-length mirror and a small couch. Perfect if someone needs to take five.

The Grounds

Probably the best bit as your drink reception and couple and group photos will be here. They’re simply lovely.

Key Facts

Address: The Orangery at Goldney House, Lower Clifton Hill, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 1BH
0117 428 4000

It’s not dog friendly. Guide dogs only, unfortunately.

Prices on application.

The Orangery can host up to 150 people for the evening part. And up to 40 people for your wedding or civil ceremony.

The option for a marquee in the gardens takes the capacity to 400.

An outdoor ceremony is an option. Yes, please!

For food and drink choices, Fosters Events are their only supplier. The meal they provided me with was the nicest meal I had that year at a wedding. They are very good. Evening food choices include stone-baked pizza, posh kebabs, baps with a choice of fillings such as roast field mushroom with garlic, sage & Westcombe Cheddar. Oh yes.

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