Alice & Josh's Pride & Prejudice wedding at Rise Hall

Today’s Real Wedding is a real masterpiece- drama, romance and a little bit of history too! Alice & Josh celebrated their day with a literary-themed wedding at Rise Hall in winter 2023, and those glorious winter colours are absolutely stunning! Here they give their top wedding planning dos and don’ts- so settle down with a cuppa for a great read!

Alice and Josh’s Pride & Prejudice Wedding at Rise Hall

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography


Where do you live?

We live in East Yorkshire, in a small town called Newport, near Brough.

How did you meet?

We met at our first year at the University at Hull. We both had some mutual friends made during Fresher’s Week, and got to know one another from then on. We became really close friends and eventually it blossomed into something more!

What do you both do for work?

Josh is a Senior .NET Developer at Howden’s Joinery, and Alice is Head of Operations at British Esports.

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Yorkshire Country House Wedding Venue | Alice & Josh

Tell us about the proposal… Any lovely photographs you have of the special moment would be great! 

We got engaged a year before our wedding in November 2022 and Alice did not expect it at all – having been together for 9 years at that point it was definitely a surprise! We went out for a lovely anniversary meal at a restaurant near York we both liked, and whilst we were out Josh had arranged for his mum to help with decorating our living room with banners and lights and petals. When we came back, we entered the living room and it was all decorated beautifully and champagne waiting as well. Josh dropped on one knee and proposed with his late-Grandma’s ring which was stunning. It was the perfect end to the night, and the rest is history!

Wedding Planning – Please tell us a little bit about the wedding planning 

The wedding planning was good, but a bit stressful! We kept a spreadsheet of the actions, budgets, things to do, and suppliers so we could keep track which was very useful for us both. Although we tried to be as planned as possible, organising a wedding on top of full time jobs was tricky but we kept on trying to make sure we asked for advice when needed, and our family was very helpful with being there for us when we needed them.

Why did you choose Rise Hall for your wedding?

Rise Hall was actually the first venue we saw, and it set such a high standard! As soon as we got engaged we spoke about all we wanted from a venue – spacious and all in one place in case it rained, a country house, intimate feeling for the ceremony, and accommodation on site. Rise Hall truly had everything we wanted and became the literary ‘Pride and Prejudice’ classical wedding we were looking for.

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography

What is it that makes Rise Hall different to other wedding venues you looked at?

Rise Hall was different to the other venues because it was all in one place. It had its own catering company, the ceremony and evening reception could all be in one place, and it had several rooms for family members to have a quiet place to catch up. The games room was an unexpected but great addition, and the children attending our wedding loved it! As there was on-site accommodation as well, this was a priority for us as some of our family members lived far away and would be helpful for them to have a place to stay, and also for our grandparents so they could still enjoy the day but then head to bed when they felt ready.

What were you looking for in a wedding venue?

For a wedding venue we were looking for:

  • Country house (or castle) as we both love history and character properties
  • Somewhere that was primarily inside, as with the date being in November we couldn’t guarantee the weather would be great (although it was!)
  • On-site accommodation
  • Ceremony, wedding breakfast, and reception to have the capability to be in the same place
  • All on one level if possible, due to accessibility of some of our family members,
  • Small rooms for family members to have a quiet area to catch up if not wanting to be in the same room as the reception
  • Availability in November – after the engagement we wanted to get married in a year’s time so it would be 10 years together on the wedding day.

Previously we were keen to have a wedding like it was from ‘Pride and Prejudice’ and in many ways we got exactly that with our wedding at Rise Hall.

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography

How did you find Rise Hall? Tell us a bit about your search…

We found Rise Hall after googling venues in Yorkshire that were country houses and looking into the requirements we wanted above. It was one of the first that came up, and although we weren’t sure about the cost at the time, we wanted to at least view the venue to see if that’s what we wanted, or not. And it definitely was! We went on a cold day in December to view, just before Christmas, but it was perfect for us to view as it gave us an idea of what it would be like on a cold day in November, and how it was still so warm and inviting! The lighting and space available was just what we wanted, and with it being the first venue we physically visited, it really set a precedent to the others which was hard for them to follow up!

Where did you find your invitations?

For our invitations we made these ourselves using Canva. It took a lot of templates and back-and-forth over the wording, but we wrote these all ourselves, then posted them off.

Did you have a theme or style in mind?

Our theme/style to the wedding was primarily literary. We both love books and wanted to incorporate this into the wedding. The three things our theme focused on was books (literary), classical-style, and burgundy/autumn colour scheme.

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography

The cake – where was it from and what was it like?

The wedding cake was made and decorated by Josh’s Mum, Anne. Anne has made fantastic cakes for the whole family at nearly every wedding, so it was tradition that we definitely wanted to continue! Especially as it was Josh’s wedding, we only wanted to use Anne because we knew the style and cake itself would be beautiful and taste amazing.

Anne decorated the 3 tiered cake with hand-made iced flowers that matched the florals. The colours were exactly the same as the florals as well, with burgundy tones. The iced flowers were beautiful and made with so much love.

The flavour was vanilla cake, with raspberry and white chocolate buttercream, and raspberry jam.

Anne also made toffee crispy marshmallow cake as a secondary cake for the evening reception, as its a family favourite! This also had a Lego wedding topper on it as well.

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography

Who styled the venue?

We booked Jen from My Pretties UK to help style the venue. After looking around online, My Pretties UK came highly recommended and we wanted a stylist to help bring our vision to life. Jen went above and beyond. We had some elements of the venue we wanted to style ourselves due to them being quite personal, such as a memorial table to loved ones who were not able to be with us on the day, and collecting classic books to go with the theme. Jen was great at taking the parts we did ourselves and tying them in to her items so it looked seamless. The way she styled the whole venue made it look just as we had hoped and only heightened the beauty of the venue.

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography

Who did you choose to do your florals? Why? What did you have?

For florals, we chose Jen from My Pretties UK, who also styled our venue. After viewing her portfolio, and as Jen was already styling the venue for us, we thought it was perfect to ask her to do the florals as well so the style and flowers would match just right. Jen was fantastic in styling the venue, the florals were beautiful colours and matched the theme so well. All our favourite flowers were in there, and she did a bunching service for us the day after so our friends and family could take a bouquet home with them to remember the special day. We also had Victoria (Alice’s MUA) help preserve the flowers in resign for keepsakes in her other business (Pretty Pressed Co), so we can look at them and be reminded of the wedding everyday.

The colour theme was: Autumnal, burgundy, terracotta, dark green, plum & gold.

The list of flowers we had is below:

  • Plum garden roses
  • Toffee and Cappuccino roses
  • Orange Dahlias
  • Peach dahlias
  • Burgundy dahlias
  • Hydrangea
  • Chocolate Cosmos
  • Thistles
  • Dusky pink Lisianthus
  • Astrantia, wax flower, Astilbe
  • Olive leaf, Eucalyptus, and Ruscus

Pre Wedding Preparations 

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography

Where did you get ready?

Alice got ready in the Swift Suite on-site at Rise Hall. Alice got ready with her sister (Rosie) who was her maid of honour, and her mum and dad came in and out as well to see her throughout the morning.

Josh got ready in the Victorian Suite with Rufus (his best man).

Who did your Hair and make-up?

Alice’s hair was done by Brodie from Joanne Mahoney Howden. Brodie is Josh and Alice’s primary hairdresser for the past couple of years, so it was fantastic to be able to include him in our special day as knows us both so well. Brodie also did Rosie’s hair on the day as well, along with tidying Josh’s hair to make him even more handsome.

Alice’s make-up was done by Victoria Senior MUA. Alice reached out to Victoria after being recommended her, and Victoria was kind to do a trial with Alice to help her envision what her make-up would look like on the day. As Alice doesn’t wear make-up too often, Victoria was very helpful and patient with all of Alice’s questions about what would work, and Alice was over the moon with the natural and classical look which Victoria did on the day.

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography

The dress – where was it from and how many dresses did you try on?

Many dresses – probably too many – were tried on! Alice’s dress on the day was from Elite Bridal. Alice bought her dress from the Harrogate branch, but got adjustments done in the Hull branch. Alice’s had a few dresses selected at many points throughout the year, primarily due to Alice’s low confidence in finding something that she felt suited her. Alice bought 1 dress in January, but returned it soon after as felt bought too soon to try and ‘tick a box’ but it was not what she really wanted. Her second dress she bought a few months later and kept till around September – it was a classical off the shoulder ballroom style, however ultimately her confidence issues caused her to have a panic last minute look round more wedding dress shops. This lead her to the Elite Bridal shop in Harrogate with her parents, where she tried on more styles that made her feel more confident and beautiful – which was the final dress! This dress was beautiful with the lace details and sleeves, and still had a train which she wanted. She felt it also matched the venue perfectly.

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography

Groomsmen outfits – where were they from?

The groomsmen’s outfits were from Skopes. Josh and his best man (Rufus) went to try on the suits and they fit great with a range of colours as well. Josh chose a lighter colour blue for himself, with his best man, groomsman (his brother Sam), and Alice’s father (Carl) in a darker navy. Josh also gifted his brother and best man a pocket watch as a thank you gift for all their help on our wedding day.

Bridesmaids outfits- where was it from?

Alice’s sister (Rosie) was her maid of honour and bridesmaid, and her outfit was ordered online from Ever-Pretty. Flowers from the bouquet were also added to Rosie’s hair, similar to Alice. Alice gifted her sister some earrings and silver bracelet, as a thank you for everything she has done.

Our niece (Paige) was our flower girl, and her outfit was from Monsoon.


The Wedding Day!

The weather looked glorious on your pictures! Please include credit for photographer –

We were very fortunate with the weather! There was only a little bit of rain in the morning, but it soon cleared up and was beautiful fresh sunshine for the rest of the day, so we could still do the group photo outside, some portrait shots of us at the front of the house, and the sparkler shot we requested later in the evening. We couldn’t have asked for better weather on the day.

Our photographer was Amy Cawthorne Photography.

Date of your wedding?

Our wedding was on Saturday 18th November 2023.

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography

Which menu did you choose?

Our menu choice was part of the Silk option with canapés for the drinks reception. For the wedding breakfast we had the baked prawns, roast beef, and Eton mess. Due to some allergies and dietary requirements, we also had some variations, vegetarian, and vegan options so all our family and friends were catered for. All were delicious and went down a treat with all guests! The extra special attention to detail with all staff knowing who had certain allergies or dietary requirements, such as one of our guests being vegan and ensuring the guest knew what canapés they could eat, was amazing service.

What drinks did you have for the reception?

For the reception we had a mixture of red and white for the tables at the wedding breakfast, and sparkling wine and some beer available for the drinks reception. We also had an additional staff member booked for the bar to keep it open throughout the wedding breakfast in case they wanted a different type of drink. We had champagne for the toast.

What was the most treasured memory on the day?

Our most treasured memory was the ceremony – the feeling of everything finally coming together, our friends and family around sharing this moment with us, and seeing each other at the end of the aisle both so happy. It was all beautiful and more than we could ever have dreamed of.

We also very much treasured the private time together just after the ceremony when we had a drink in the library whilst the guests were getting ready for the group shot. It was so lovely to have a quiet moment together to be all giddy about being finally married and that it was all official. We both couldn’t stop smiling. It wasn’t a long time, but in a day we both knew would pass so quickly, it was a moment we will treasure forever.


Which band or entertainment did you book?

For the ceremony and drinks reception, we booked a Pianist (Finn Barnaby). After looking at the venue and grand piano in the main hall with the staircase, we just knew it should be used! We looked around for local pianists and Finn came highly recommended, and was perfect on the day. Finn kindly did a consultation with us before to talk through our music choices and how they would sound which really helped us visualise what it would be like on the day. The piano really added to our classical literary vibe for the wedding.

For the evening reception, we booked Jonny Ross Music for one of their DJ’s (Matt). We saw them at the showcase day at Rise Hall previously and thought they would be perfect.

Did you have any special transport?

As our ceremony, wedding breakfast, and reception were at the same venue,  we did not have any special transport and just came in our cars with family.

Dine Venues | Rise Hall | Winter wedding in Yorkshire | Stately home wedding venue | Amy Cawthorne Photography

Post Wedding –

Would you recommend Dine to friends and family?

We would definitely recommend Dine! The whole team, in particular Kim and those who assisted us on the day, went above and beyond continuously. Kim was very helpful in answering all our questions in the lead up to the event, the tasting session was well worth utilising to enable us to get a better idea of what the food will be like on the day. On the day itself, it ran so smoothly and we both knew we were in capable hands so we (and our family members) did not have to stress about organising anything or what was next on the timetable – it was all organised and managed by Dine. Huge thanks to Kim in particular, for going the extra mile – for helping to sort Alice’s dress after a red wine incident, ensuring the thank you flowers were handed to all suppliers, and for always checking everything was going to plan! We would recommend Dine and Rise Hall to any couple looking to have a fantastic experience for their wedding.

Where did you go on honeymoon?

For our honeymoon we took two weeks and went straight after the wedding. We went to Vienna in Austria for the first week, and Florence in Italy for the second. Due to the time of year, we wanted to see some of the Christmas markets and have long city breaks to do some site seeing, but also relax and enjoy the beginning of married life.

Any special advice you would give to future brides / couples planning their wedding?

Make sure to communicate and talk to each other about what you want! Sometimes it can get lost in the planning with many opinions and advice from friends or family, but the biggest focus should be what you both hope the day to be. Chat and discuss as much as you can, make a list of priorities, and ensure that you are both getting what you want as a primary. The day should be what you both envision, to help you treasure those memories forever when looking back.