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Come and tell me where to have my reception in Berkshire...

We have a smallish budget, but we don’t want any frills so I thought it would be easy – how wrong I was haha!

When I say no frills, I really  do mean it. I want a buffet dinner only (getting married at 4pm) and although I realise I’ll need seats for everyone, I don’t want formally laid tables. I really just want everyone to come, eat drink, and have fun. No top table, no speeches, our own music etc. etc. But everywhere I speak to seems like they just don’t “get it” and keep telling me about top tables and balloons and things. Which is fine and lovely if that’s what you want but it’s just not for us. I would ideally like to have our own caterers… or at least bring our own booze… but I know venues like that are like hens teeth.

We are getting married in Reading town centre but don’t mind travelling a little way to the reception.  I was thinking that a church hall type thing would be an idea, but they aren’t very attractive from what I have seen so far. The other idea I had was an area of a pub or bar, but we have an 80 strong guest list so no where is big enough unless we take over the whole place which is where the big figures come in.

This is my ideal venue but I was quoted £14,000 for it yesterday and I’m thinking more along the lines of £3000 HAHA!

Thanks xxx 


  • What about walking down to the Bel & Dragon?

    No idea of cost but it's nearby and you can have the whole thing to yourselves. Or take over the Oakford! image

  • Are you my fiance? He would LOVE both of those ideas!! We really like the Bel & Dragon - excellent idea! 

    on to it now! 

    The Oakford was mooted by him actually but not sure if it would tickle the fancy of our older guests... 



  • Haha! Let me know about the bel and dragon costings, if we got married round here I'd have loved that.

    Good point about the older members of the family & the Oakford!

    Have you booked your ceremony already? I'll have a think of other venues. Have you seen the Penta Hotel? My friend used to work there and although it's on a slightly dodgy road, it is lovely inside.

    Would Maidenhead/Windsor be too far for the reception? X

  • Thanks for that. We've booked at the Town Hall in Reading. The room with the stained glass windows. It's really nice and only £300! 

    We've about 50 coming for the ceremony, then a further 30 odd for the reception. Which I from now on refer to as a "party" which is what it is. 

    When did you get married? Have made enquiries to B&D! 


  • Not married just yet, doing it in December in the new forest! But had looked at a really nice pub near Windsor (gorgeous and affordable if it's not too far away?) & a nice pub/restaurant on the river in Maidenhead, as had originally wanted to get married at Windsor Guildhall. Can pass on the details if they aren't too far away. Both had a nice relaxed feel, which may suit what you're after.

    Though thinking about it, if it's 50 for the meal- what about Myalacarte in Caversham? Not sure if they're too small though. X

  • They say no hire charge or minimum spend, just buffet per head (which depends on what we want) and we can either have a tab or cash bar... They can only have around 70 though... so some of them might be getting cut lol!

    Great idea, thank you so much. I really like the look of the inside of Penta, but don't think I can get passed the Oxford Road image 

  • X posts.

    The maidenhead one would probably be okay! My A La Carte would probably be too small, unless they moved the table out for us image 

  • Oh wow, that is awesome! Can't believe there's no hire charge!

    Yeah I know what you mean about Penta, such a shame as it's so nice inside.

    The maidenhead restaurant is called Boulters:

  • Thanks!! 

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