2024 availability and special offers – Find out more

2024 availability and special offers – Find out more

2024 availability and special offers – Find out more


A walk through your wedding day

Your wedding day timeline

This page serves as a guide for the timing of your wedding day. Each wedding is completely unique, so the timeline will not be the same for all couples. Please speak to the Events Team for a more definitive guide to your day, taking into consideration your ceremony time, the package you choose and your guest numbers.

7am Your wedding day is here

You have waited many months for today, and now it is finally here. It is time to spend your unforgettable wedding day at Old Palace Chester. All of your planning has been leading up to this, and now it is our turn to turn your dreams into reality. It is almost time to travel to Old Palace Chester, passing the River Dee as your captivating venue awaits you.

9am Your dressing room awaits

From 9 am, you will be able to access our light and stylish Morning Room. This luxurious space has been purpose-designed as a relaxing retreat for you and your nearest and dearest to get ready in. With hair and makeup stations, a luxurious shower, and plenty of space to relax, the Morning Room has everything you need to put the finishing touches to your look. Our second wedding prep room, ‘The Den’, will be available to access from 11 am. Those precious hours before the ceremony will be spent with your nearest and dearest, and if you are feeling peckish, we have a selection of grazing boards and drinks you can order to keep your energy levels up as you get ready.

12:30pm Your exclusive hire begins

OPC is exclusively yours from 90 minutes before your ceremony. While you are putting together the final touches in The Morning Room, our Events Team will be on hand to greet your guests. Our licensed bar will be open for guests to purchase refreshments and will close 30 minutes before the ceremony to give guests time to finish their drinks and take their seats. If you have chosen a church wedding, the venue is still yours to use as you please; we will amend the running of the day to accommodate these arrangements. You can find six beautiful churches within one mile of Old Palace Chester and, of course, the magnificent Chester Cathedral.

1:45pm Meet with the registrar

Just before the ceremony, you will both (separately) answer a few questions with the registrar; this is an informal chat, so you are both prepared for the next steps.

2pm Exchange your vows

Your guests will be seated and awaiting your imminent arrival. Make the walk down your private staircase and take a moment to gather your thoughts with your wedding party before making your entrance into the romantic River Room. Get ready for some of the most important words you will ever say.

2:30pm Drinks reception

After your ceremony, mingle with your loved ones on The Garden Terrace, in the gardens or in the elegant Arrival Hall, which is the heart of the original building, and treat them to a memorable drinks reception. A Champagne bar or cocktail station coupled with mouth-watering canapés will certainly go down a treat.

3pm Camera ready

Your photographer will whisk you away to some of the most stylish and romantic spots in Old Palace Chester. Some photography favourites are The Grand Staircase, the Garden Terrace and, of course, that honeymoon suite! There are numerous photo opportunities just outside of the venue in the ruins of St John’s Church, Grosvenor Park (both next door), The Groves on the River Dee and the ancient Roman city walls.

4pm Your wedding breakfast

Your meticulously planned and prepared wedding breakfast awaits in the elegant Ballroom. Our glass extension gives elevated views over the adjacent Roman Gardens. Make your grand first entrance as a married couple into your captivating wedding reception.

6pm Say a few words

Old Palace Chester is yours to enjoy as you wish. Once you have finished your first meal as a married couple, it’s time for the speeches; then, you can spend your time on The Garden Terrace or in the stylish Peploe Lounge and Bar with your guests in a relaxed and private setting. Your evening entertainment can take this opportunity to discreetly set up and get everything ready for the perfect party.

7pm Evening guests arrive

Any evening guests will arrive and start to join the party at this time, give them the warmest of welcomes with a glass of prosecco on arrival (please speak to our team for more information on food and drink upgrades). If necessary, we can subtly adjust the layout of The Ballroom to accommodate a larger party and make room for the dance floor.

7:30pm First dance and cake cutting

Once all your friends and family have gathered, it is time to cut the cake and come together for your first dance as a married couple. Traditionally, you would cut the cake and then take to the floor, but you can choose to do things however you like when you celebrate here.

8pm Get the party started

It is time to turn the music up and dance the night away with the ones you love. Any additional entertainment that you may want to offer, such as a photo booth, can easily be accommodated.

8:30pm Exciting and generous evening food

As evening falls, you can treat your guests to an array of delicious food options served in The Garden Kitchen in front of The Ballroom. Our chefs will cook anything from wood-fired pizzas to a barbecue feast and fragrant wok food, which can either be served to your guests outside as the sun sets or indoors if you would prefer.

11:15pm Last orders

Your bar manager will call for last orders and start to draw the night to a close. It is time for one last drink and a final dance with your friends and family.

11:30pm The evening comes to an end

Your DJ or band will play the last song, giving you the perfect opportunity to say thank you and goodnight to your guests. With 22 luxurious bedrooms in Old Palace Chester, your guests will only have a short lift ride upstairs to their home for the night.

12 Midnight Say goodnight

Retire to the captivating Palace Suite, with its private lounge, huge bathroom and breathtaking ceiling, and unwind in the peace and privacy of Old Palace Chester. We ask that all guests not residing at Old Palace Chester for the night vacate the venue by midnight. We recommend that local taxis are booked in advance to avoid disappointment.

The following day

8am Breakfast in style

Gather together once again in The Ballroom and enjoy a delicious breakfast from 8 am onwards. This is a wonderful way to end your time at Old Palace Chester, as you can eat, drink and reminisce about your big day with your closest friends and family.

9:30am Check-out time

Your items from the day before will be collected together and ready for you when you leave, so it is time to say your final goodbyes to your guests, our team and Old Palace Chester. We wish you lots of joy in your married lives together!

Be a part of our story

Our doors are open so come and find out why this spectacular wedding venue in Cheshire is the perfect place to celebrate your special day. Check our available dates and prices, browse our gallery for ideas, or arrange a visit to see Old Palace Chester for yourself.