The Orchardleigh Estate
The Orchardleigh Estate near Frome is certainly a unique and interesting place for wedding photography Frome! I haven’t visited in person, but from my online research, it seems like a fascinating historic house and grounds for wedding photography Bath. Let me tell you about some of the key details I’ve learned.
The Grand Main House
To start, the main house itself dates back to the early 18th century, so it’s nearly 300 years old now! It was originally built around 1720 for the Strachey family. The architecture has that classic stately home look, with two main wings connected by a colonnade. It’s built from the local cream-colored limestone, which gives it that distinctive Cotswolds look and feel.
Over the centuries, the house has had a number of different owners and has evolved with various expansions and renovations. In the Victorian era, a large service wing was added to the back of the house. This provided all the behind-the-scenes areas needed to run a grand estate, including kitchens, laundry, servants’ quarters, and more.
The interiors have also been transformed over time. Today, the rooms have an elegant Georgian and Regency style, with intricate plasterwork ceilings and large windows overlooking the grounds. There are fine antiques and artworks throughout – perfect backdrops for wedding photography Frome. I read that one room has over 20 Van Dyke paintings alone!
The dining room has an interesting history too. During World War II, the house was used as a school and the dining room was actually the boy’s dormitory! It’s hard to imagine all those small beds crammed in there now.
Some of the estate records indicate there used to be intricate parterre gardens directly behind the house. Those have long disappeared, but there are still some magnificent 60-foot-tall cedar trees from the original plantings.
Scenic Gardens and Grounds
Let’s move on to talk about the wider estate and grounds. In total, Orchardleigh comprises over 500 acres! That’s a huge amount of space for wedding photography Frome. The estate includes forests, farmlands, streams, a lake, and more.
The central feature is the large ornamental lake right in front of the house. It covers over 5 acres and has an oval shape, with an island pavilion at one end. Legend has it there used to be a Venetian gondola that would carry guests around the lake! The lake would be an idyllic setting for wedding photography Bath.
On one side of the lake is a petite yet picturesque bridge that leads over to the island. The classic arched bridge was installed in the 1830s. It makes for an idyllic spot to take a stroll and admire the views.
Surrounding the lake are wide open lawns, towering trees, and informal garden areas. The massive cedar trees near the house that I mentioned earlier line the path to the lake. They’re truly striking with their great size and sprawling limbs.
The wider estate features various scenic paths that wind through meadows and woodlands. One of the prettiest areas is Lacy’s Wood, an ancient grove of towering beech, oak, and sweet chestnut trees. Some of the trees there are over 300 years old, dating back to when the estate was first established. Lacy’s Wood would be a fairy tale location for wedding photography Frome.
There are also two tree-lined avenues that radiate out from the house – Lime Avenue and Chestnut Avenue. They make for regal, long-distance views and perfect backdrops for wedding photography Bath. Lime Avenue is over 350 yards long!
Filming Location and Wedding Venue
One fun fact I read is that Orchardleigh provides a filming location for the hit TV show Poldark, standing in as the fictional Trenwith Estate. With its quintessential English countryside setting, it’s perfectly suited for historical productions.
Shifting gears a bit, let’s talk about the estate’s more modern history – specifically, its transition into a hotel and events venue. This first started in 1947 when the house opened up as a country club. Then, in the 1990s, it underwent major renovations to become the luxury hotel it is today.
The hotel has 22 lavish suites, many with four-poster beds and ornate fireplaces. The names are inspired by previous residents and history, like the Strachey Room and the Churchill Room.
In addition to hotel guests, Orchardleigh now hosts over 130 weddings and photography sessions per year. The romantic lakefront setting amongst the gardens makes it a breathtaking spot for weddings and wedding photography in Frome. And the estate has over 20 different indoor and outdoor venues to choose from for events and wedding photography Bath.
Reviews from Recent Visitors
Finally, I read some reviews from recent hotel guests and visitors. People rave about the beautiful, historic setting and the impeccable service – perfect for a wedding photography Frome session. Apparently, no request is too big or too small for the staff!
Guests also loved exploring the paths around the estate. Some said it felt like stepping back in time, especially when wandering through ancient wooded areas like Lacy’s Wood. The timeless atmosphere provides an exquisite backdrop for wedding photography Bath.
The only complaints I came across were some rooms being quite small and outdated. But the consensus seems to be that the jaw-dropping surroundings more than makeup for any minor lodging quibbles.
Overall, Orchardleigh estate appears to be a one-of-a-kind destination. With over 300 years of history on display, much of it still intact from its days as an aristocratic estate, it truly seems like something special. I can see why it’s become such a coveted spot for weddings, photography sessions, and events. And I’m sure a future overnight visit or attendance at a beautiful wedding there would be an unforgettable experience.