An affordable, do it yourself wedding venue in Kent
“The barn was all that we could wish for and more. All our guests commented on how fantastic our venue was and it was perfect for our wedding day. Please can you pass on our thanks to Malcolm, it was great to see his friendly face and no question was too small or big!….the barn is just beautiful and we hope it will make many more brides and grooms as happy as we are.” – Vicky and Richard.
“A big big thank you for the Great Barn which was much admired…it was a wonderful day and we were so lucky with the weather…the Barn was everything I hoped it would be.” – Sam.
“Everything went amazingly well on Saturday. We got so many compliments on our venue choice and all the guests loved the barn.” – Kay and Ash
“We are so please that we had the barn as our wedding venue. All our guests thought the venue was absolutely amazing!” – Cheralyn
“We had the most amazing wedding at The Great Barn at the weekend and we wanted to say thank you. The service you provided was amazing from start to finish” – Hannah & Adam
The Great Barn is a listed Kentish Barn in Rolvenden, which is available for private hire for weddings and parties. This fine barn dating from the 18th century forms part of a range of traditional brick and timber farm buildings last used for agriculture in the mid-1980s. It is constructed entirely of a heavy timber frame with the outer walls clad in weatherboard under a tiled roof.
The Great Barn is full of character in a rural situation and is a magnificent venue in which clients can create their own distinctive event.
Description (Please also see Floor Plan)
The main barn space measures 25m long by 8m wide and is on two levels. The upper area, into which guests enter, is 11m by 8m wide and the lower area, down 4 steps, is 14m by 8m. To one side is a semi-circular “round house”, formerly the site of a mill, but now ideal as a stage or site for band or discotheque. The barn will hold up to 160 people.
To the other side are French windows opening on to a terrace with views across open countryside and steps down to the lawn area giving access to the service and barbecue areas and to the lavatories.
The Great Barn comes complete with its ready laid out kitchen areas consisting of two rooms measuring 5m by 3m and 4.5m by 3m, each with generous work surfaces and access to the lawns at a lower level as well as to unloading doors at vehicle height for delivery.
There is an electric hook up point outside for a chiller van/trailer, and space for an LPG cooker (not provided). The kitchen facilities for are limited. All plates, glassware and dishes should be taken elsewhere for washing, in conjunction with the requirements of your chosen hire company (if any).
Hog roasts are very popular in a setting such as The Great Barn and this may take place outside on the terrace or lawn.
The Great Barn is registered with Ashford Borough Council Environmental Health Services and complies with the Food Hygiene (England) Regulations 2005 and has been awarded 5 stars in their Food Hygiene Rating Scheme. When selecting your caterer you may care to check that they too meet Environmental Health Regulations and are appropriately registered (Ashford BC Environmental Health Services 01233 330470).
Booking Dates and Times
The Great Barn is limited in its availability to 18 functions per annum. Priority is given on a first come, first served basis. Most events are centred on weekends and therefore the barn will be available to customers from the Wednesday prior to their event to allow for setting up. After the function the barn must be left tidy as soon as is reasonably possible, and certainly by late afternoon on the Monday after a weekend hire.
All music must end by 11.30 with guests departing by midnight. Our Caretaker will be on site to ensure an orderly close down.
2019: We can now take one more booking. Please call 07717 092 294 for availability.
2020: Bookings now being taken
Use of the Grounds
Your function should be restricted to taking place within the barn itself. However we are happy for you to use the terrace and barnyard as part of your plans, provided no music is played outside and you have told us in advance what you are proposing to do outside. Additional tents may be erected, with our consent.
Cleaning and Ground Maintenance
Prior to each wedding we will clean the barn. Hirers will naturally wish to carry out final cleaning as their preparations are complete. Thereafter we expect each hirer to clean it after their use to the standard they received it. Should we have cause to clean it there will be a supplementary charge (At cost plus £100).
We will carry out all external ground care: mowing all the grass as necessary, to keep it short but not as a lawn, and mow the orchard for parking. Hirers may care to do some minor sweeping up to suit themselves.
A dance floor is provided if you wish and can be configured to suit your requirements and numbers.
In order to comply with Environmental Health Regulations, we have installed a sound moderation system, which will cut off the power if the decibel level of 96.5 is exceeded. Ample warning is given before cut-off.This system is as much for your own enjoyment of your event as for our peace of mind.
Tables, Chairs and Party Equipment Hire
No equipment is provided beyond what you find at the barn now. You should expect to hire all tables, chairs, glasses and cutlery for your function and we are happy to recommend sources for these.
Winter Use and Heating
There is no heating available at the Great Barn. For events that may require this, you should make your own arrangements to hire marquee-style heaters with an enclosed flame, which must be primarily gas or oil powered and not use the electricity supplied. Two duct cut outs are provided, one at each end so that suitable heating units may be located outside The Great Barn. These have proved sufficient for most parties. Please consult one of our recommended plant hire companies for further advice.
Use of Candles
Candles may be used to decorate and light the barn but they must only be on tables and within a recognised candle holder, and at no time placed directly onto any part of the timber frame of the building.
In accordance with HM Government’s legislation, no smoking is permitted anywhere in the barn. Guests may smoke outside the premises and sand buckets are positioned outside for cigarette butts..
The Great Barn is fitted with a fire alarm, linked to emergency lighting. The penalty for misuse of this facility is £100. It is not connected to a central monitoring station. Fire extinguishers are provided. Any that are discharged, except in emergency, will be charged at £100, plus the cost of cleaning up as necessary.
Parking is in the adjacent orchard, which is kept mown to make it suitable for cars. When ground conditions do not permit use of the orchard, then parking is available around the extended farmyard at Halden Place, with some drivers potentially having a little distance to walk back to the barn, having dropped off passengers on their way in.
There are two WCs available, which you may find sufficient but for larger events additional facilities may be required. If so, a trailer should be hired and located either under cover of the concrete barn on the driveway or by the doors on the side of the barn. The driveway and the doors must not be blocked at any time.The hire of this trailer is the sole responsibility of the customer.
The two WCs should be left clean at the end of the hire and you are expected to provide your own toilet rolls, soap and towels.
All refuse should be bagged and taken away. We do not have a refuse collection for the barn.
The Great Barn is registered as a civil marriage venue. A civil ceremony may take place on any day between the hours 8.00am and 8.00pm. The latest booking time for a ceremony is 7.00pm. Kent County Council require a minimum of 28 days notice prior to the marriage taking place.
THE VINEYARD: The Vineyard at Hole Park is also registered for civil ceremonies during British Summer Time. Marquees can be erected in the gardens for your reception. Please see www.holepark.com or telephone 01580 241 344 for details.
The Great Barn has a licence from Ashford Borough Council for the provision of live and recorded music, dancing and late night refreshments. For the majority of weddings there will no longer be the need to obtain further licensing from Ashford BC but you will still require a Temporary Event Notice if you are selling alcohol at a cash bar or if alcohol is included in the ticket price.
We will be pleased to assist you in obtaining a Temporary Event Notice covering the sale of alcohol. It is your responsibility to inform us no less than five weeks before the event if you believe you require one to ensure that we have time to make the necessary application to Ashford Borough Council for which the charge (currently £21) is payable by the Hirer.
We hold Public Liability insurance to the value of £5 million for events held in The Great Barn. In certain circumstances you may wish to take out your own insurance cover and we will be happy to discuss this with you.
Please see the Location Page. If you wish to describe the directions in words we suggest the following format:
“From the centre of Rolvenden take the A28 towards Tenterden. Just beyond the end of the 30mph limit turn Left into Halden Lane, the turning for which is adjacent to a row of houses. Drive for 1½ miles to the first farm on the Right, Halden Place (opposite Leyton House).”
We erect sandwich boards on the highway and farm entrance on the day of your event to assist your guests in finding The Great Barn.
Please note that if you are using satnav the postcode is TN17 4JG and not TN17 4JA which is the mailing address.
The Great Barn is available for hire at the rate of £2,700 per event – 1st April to 30th September inclusive. Outside this period the discounted rate will be £2,000. Hire charges are inclusive of VAT.
A £100 supplement is payable for civil marriages to reflect the additional administrative costs and our attendance throughout the civil ceremony.
A non-returnable deposit of £500 (+£100 civil marriage/partnership fee, if applicable) will be required to confirm your booking, together with completion and return of our Standard Terms and Conditions. Six months prior to the event we will invoice you £1,100 (or £750 off-peak season). The balance of the Licence Fee will be payable two months prior to the date of hire.
This price includes VAT, all utilities used (water and electricity), the ground maintenance and our Public Liability insurance.
Hire Firms, Caterers, Party Supplies and Related Trades
We list local Caterers, Marquee Hire Firms etc on our Hire Firms & Suppliers Page.