Normal for Norfolk Humanist wedding at Wiveton Hall. What’s a Normal for Norfolk wedding?

Wiveton Hall is owned by Desmond McCarthy. You might have seen the BBCTV series Normal for Norfolk about this fabulous house and its warm, eccentric and hugely courteous owner a couple of years ago. Situated on the North Norfolk coast between Blakeney and Cley-next-the-Sea, Wiveton Hall is a dreamy, flint-faced, Dutch-gabled, Jacobean manor house built in the 17th century. A wedding in June in this place will be spectacular!

Apparently Desmond sat on this little horse and talked for ages to Kate and Adrian when they came in the summer!

On a drizzly, cold North Norfolk November afternoon, Kate, Adrian and I met for lunch (oh what a lunch) at the Hall to plan their Normal for Norfolk wedding. In the middle of lunch in marched Desmond. Desmond was followed by his shooting party of 20-odd – all Norfolk tweeds, mud, dogs, gaiters – and he came over to our table to greet the lovely couple. He remembered them from earlier in the year when they came to look at the Hall for their wedding venue.

November days

I told Desmond I was the wedding celebrant. He had a very, very naughty twinkle in his eye when he said maybe he would add being a celebrant to his list of roles at Wiveton Hall. I suggested he might like to re-think that plan (but would be more than happy to officiate at any future celebration). I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Desmond appeared on the day of the wedding for a sneak-peek!

Celeriac soup, Blakeney mussels and raspberry pop consumed, and Christmas trees twinkling (yes, it’s come early in Norfolk) we pored over lists as we sat in the cosy cafe.

Wedding lists

Christmas wedding anyone?
  • where will the guests sit outside
  • what’s the contingency if it rains
  • how long does the walk-in take and what music has been chosen
  • upbeat music or not
  • where will the bridesmaids sit
  • who has the rings
  • shall we use my special oak bowl so if they drop, they don’t roll into the shingle or the grass
  • how many readings
  • who is reading
  • what about if it’s windy
  • will there be a confetti walk
  • has the photographer seen the venue
  • would it be a good idea for me to meet with the lovely Emma who is in charge on the day
  • how long do the couple want the ceremony to last

Decisions made (you’ll have to read again in June to get the detail!) we donned our waterproofs and walked through the drizzle and the grounds to the Hall which manages to look imposing and domestic at the same time. It is so beautiful and the views across the North Norfolk marshes to the sea are quite breathtaking.

Kate and Adrian – taking a break from the ‘lists’!

Kate and Adrian left with plenty to think about. We will resume for lunch again. Same time. Same place. February. It could be snowing!

Wiveton Hall, Norfolk