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Weddings at The Guildhall

How many guests can we invite to a Civil Wedding Ceremony?

We can seat up to 110 guests.

Do we have to book the registrar separately?

Yes, you need to book the registrar separately and should confirm their availability before confirming your provisional date with us. Please see West Sussex County Council for further details.

We would like to arrange a viewing

We would be delighted to arrange a viewing with you. Appointments must be booked in advance by calling us on 01243 775888 or by email

How long are you able to provisionally hold a date?

We will hold a provisional date for you for 14 days following your viewing.

Do I need to pay a deposit when I confirm a date?

We require a deposit of £500+VAT to secure your date. The balance will be required 8 weeks before your wedding day.

How long does a Civil Ceremony last?

A civil ceremony normally takes about 30 minutes, or longer if you choose to have additional readings.

What time should our guests arrive?

Your guests should arrive 30 minutes before the ceremony is due to begin, so that we are able to have everybody seated before the bride arrives.

Where can we park?

We have allocated spaces for up to 2 wedding cars. The closest public car park is Northgate, a short walk away from Priory Park.

Can guests be dropped off at the entrance?

Guests can be dropped off outside the entrance to Priory Park. Unauthorised vehicles must not enter the park gates.

Can we have music during our Civil Ceremony?

Yes. You should have one song to walk down the aisle to, three songs to play during the signing of the registrar and one song to walk out to. You may arrange your own musician, such as a singer, pianist or harpist, for example, or provide the music on a device (such as a smartphone, IPad or tablet) which can be played through our PA system. If the device used requires anything other than a standard jack, please supply an adapter. Music should be stored in a separate playlist, in order of play. Please remember that there cannot be any reference to religion during the ceremony, and music must be approved by the Registrar prior to the ceremony.

What time will we have access to The Guildhall on our wedding day?

You may access The Guildhall on the day of your wedding, at a time agreed in advance with your wedding coordinator.  

Can we set up the day before our wedding?

We will accommodate this request where possible, however we cannot guarantee that there will not be an event taking place the day before your wedding.

Can we have food and drink inside The Guildhall?

We allow food and drink within The Guildhall following your Civil Ceremony. Please note that no food or drink can be consumed within the venue before the ceremony takes place. If you wish to utlise the venue in this way, we can recommend local caterers or you are welcome to provide your own.

Do you charge corkage?

No, we charge no corkage on any drinks bought into the venue.

Do suppliers need to provide insurance certificates?

All outside suppliers must supply a public liability insurance certificate.

Can we decorate the venue?

Yes, you are allowed to decorate The Guildhall, but please let us know your ideas first to ensure that they are allowed within our guidelines. As The Guildhall is a Grade 1 listed building, we cannot allow anything to be fixed to the walls and do not allow the use of naked flames. You are welcome to use our charming alcoves to place flower arrangements and decorations. All decorations and flower displays must be prepared beforehand and cannot be made on site.

When do we need to collect our belongings?

Where possible, all belongings and decorations should be removed from the venue by the end of the hire period. If there is no event taking place the next day, we can arrange collection the following morning.

Can we have confetti?

Yes, but we ask that any confetti thrown is biodegradable or natural.

Can my photographer/florist/caterer visit The Guildhall before the wedding?

We are happy to allow access to suppliers prior to the wedding, to give them an idea of the space and layout of the venue. We ask that an appointment is made in advance.

How long will we have use of the venue?

A standard ceremony hire package allows access to The Guildhall for set up and decor, typically 3 hours prior to your wedding ceremony, and the ceremony itself. Should you wish to make use of the venue for a longer period of time, including use of the venue for drinks and/or canapés following your ceremony, you may do so at a hire fee of £250+VAT per hour for additional time. The latest time that The Guildhall can be occupied until is 18:00.