Look around stunning Northamptonshire wedding venue named the second most popular in the UK

The owner says there are two things that make the venue stand out from others in the county and across the country

A Northamptonshire wedding venue has been named the second most popular in the UK, according to a renowned nuptials planning site.

Dodford Manor, between Weedon and Daventry, has recently been ranked as number two on Hitched’s most popular wedding venue in the UK list.

The list is created by experts at Hitched who have analysed their user data to reveal the wedding venues with the highest booking enquiries. The Northamptonshire venue was beaten only by a Herefordshire barn venue.

The latest accolade, which says the venue boasts 211 five-star reviews from happy newlyweds, adds to a whole host of other awards and nominations, locally and nationally, that Dodford Manor has picked up over recent years, including winning Muddy Stiletto’s Northamptonshire Wedding Venue of The Year for 2023. So, what makes the barn venue stand out from the thousands of other wedding venues across the country? This newspaper chatted to managing director of Unique Venues - which Dodford Manor is part of - Simon Steel, to find out.

The story behind Dodford Manor

The wedding venue is set in 20 acres of countryside and has Grade II listed status on its barns and main building. On the country estate, sit three barns; one barn is licenced for ceremonies, another is where wedding breakfasts are held and the third has modern glass walls and is used as the wedding bar for evening receptions.

Owners Simon and Annabelle, bought the farm and land in 2009 and lived there before deciding in 2011 to convert the buildings into a wedding venue. The venue hosted its first wedding in April 2012.

Simon said: “It was a very tired manor house with barns that were, in parts, close to collapse.”

However, the owners decided they wanted to bring the barns back to life and made the decision to convert the buildings into a wedding venue. As the buildings are all listed, Simon said they had to be extremely careful to not impact the original style or the country look. He says this is partly what he believes distinguishes the venue.

What sets Dodford Manor apart from other venues?

When asked what makes Dodford Manor stand out, Simon explained two reasons; one being the setting and the other being the “awesome” team.

He added: “The barns are stunning, old 1680s stone buildings and the setting is stunning countryside.

“It has history, it has modern parts and excellent connections with its surroundings.

“It is a good, big barn venue but there are lovely barns around Northamptonshire so I think what sets it apart is the team. They are superb.

“The teams all do very different jobs to do everything and they make it all fun for couples, but also they are focused on making that person’s wedding a real success.

“All of this makes for a fantastic experience.

“We have awesome staff, hats off to them and huge gratitude.”

The venue employs 12 people directly, but also works closely with a number of other teams, including around 30 people from Jenkinsons, which caters at the venue, as well as a separate cleaning team. Simon says there are around 42 people who work at Dodford Manor on a frequent basis.

How is the venue doing?

According to Simon, the interest in the venue has always been high and he is expecting enquiries to peak over Christmas and New Year, with the Hitched news and Christmas engagements.

The owner continued: “It has been a busy year, and it has been busy since Covid. Interest levels have returned to pre-Covid levels.

“Weekends are always popular, but we’ve seen a shift and brides and grooms have more confidence in hosting their functions Monday to Thursday.

“We have a busy 2024, but we do still have availability and it is looking reasonably busy with good enquiry levels for 2025, which has been helped also by Muddy Stilettos giving us an award for Northamptonshire.”

Find out more about the wedding venue on the Dodford Manor website.

Take a look around the stunning Northamptonshire wedding venue, which has been named the second most popular in the UK, with the pictures below.