Visitors from as far afield as Southampton, Norwich and Newcastle headed to the Lake District Wedding Fair over the weekend (Saturday 22 and Sunday 23 February 2020).
Just days after the region was named as the UK’s most romantic destination, the event in the Exhibition Hall at the J36 Rural Auction Centre brought together more than fifty wedding-related exhibitors from every corner of Cumbria to meet brides and grooms-to-be from across the country.
As well as couples from Cumbria, the event attracted visitors from across Northern England, the South East and the east coast looking to the Lake District and Cumbria as their ultimate wedding destination. Among the highlights were a professional catwalk fashion show, wedding planning workshops and live entertainment throughout the weekend.
The Lake District Wedding Fair is the only annual event of its kind to bring solely Cumbria-based wedding venues and suppliers together under one roof. That included everything from venues, cakes and bridalwear to photography, cakes and specialist vehicle hire.
Event organiser Nick Hood says, “This event shows that large-scale wedding fairs aren’t just for the big cities. Staging an event like is a real collective effort, and there is a solid core of local businesses who have come together with enthusiasm, determination and sheer hard work to provide a show window for all our region has to offer. In particular, the behind-the-scenes work that went into the fashion show was tremendous, and everyone involved can be so proud of the positive response it received from a packed room of people from across the country.”
Keeley Moore, from Eden Wedding Boutique, comments, “I’ve spoken to people who have travelled many miles to be here and time and time again, they remind me that the Lake District and Cumbria have a special place in so many people’s hearts. As a business, it’s important to have these conversations face-to-face and understand what potential customers really want. But more than that, an event like this offers a rare opportunity to meet other suppliers and make new connections to help small businesses like ours to grow and prosper.”
John Rodgers, Marketing Manager from The Villa Levens, adds, “There’s no doubt that weddings are a key part of our business and the Lake District Wedding Fair has been a great way to introduce our venue to people who may never have heard of us before. We’ve had lots of good reactions and enquiries throughout the weekend and it underlines just how important the bridal market is for future business growth.”
According to Cumbria Registrars, more than 5,000 couples have chosen to get married in Cumbria in the last two years and more than 2,300 weddings are already booked in for 2020. At the same time, there has been a leap in bookings for civil ceremonies already this year, following new legislation in December that allowed opposite sex couples to form civil partnerships for the first time.