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Once upon a time…… located in an almost forgotten valley between Luddesdown and Holly Hill, astride the North Kent Downs in the South East of England, there stood, sadly unloved, and decaying, a former Norman church built over 900 years ago – the only trace of the now ‘lost’ village of Dode.

Now having been lovingly restored by the current owners, this beautiful, charming, enchantingly romantic, now privately owned medieval church is known as The Lost Village of Dode and is available for hire.

If you vow to love, honor and respect your partner, we can now offer you a magical, relaxed, romantic, stunning, unique wedding venue for up to 40 of your closest family and friends, with some on site Self-catering accommodation.

The Lost Village of Dode is perfect for couples who want to begin their tale of love, romance and desire, either inside or outside. You can choose from an intimate indoor Civil Ceremony or Partnership and Renewal of Vows. Or for an outdoor Blessing or Pagan Handfasting Ceremony, you can hold your event within the ancient Stone Circle followed by a lavish Wedding Reception, with dancing and then stay overnight, onsite, in one of the two superb award-winning cottages.

Civil Wedding Ceremonies, Civil Partnerships, Renewal of Vows

Perhaps in your heart of hearts, you have always imagined getting married in a church?

Maybe it’s the stunning architecture, the sense of tradition, or how special churches or chapels feel that draws you to such buildings? But, a traditional church ceremony is just too religious for you or your loved one, whilst a civil ceremony just doesn’t feel spiritual enough? Here at the Lost Village of Dode the former Norman Church enables you an amazing opportunity to ‘have and to hold’ the best of both worlds, in that the ancient and sacred building allows you to have all of the tradition and the beauty, all under one magnificent roof, but without the religious restraints or connotations.

This ancient place of worship, now a licensed wedding venue, enables you to get married in a quaint, lovingly preserved, medieval former church but, and importantly, it enables you to book a non-religious Civil Ceremony or Partnership, followed by your Wedding Reception and Wedding Drinks in a church.

To enter the small free-standing church, you push open a gorgeous large dark oak door, hinged with beautiful decorative iron work. As you enter the atmospheric building you can’t help but think about and touching the life’s of those people who lived and worshiped at Dode so long ago, it’s like walking back into a medieval time capsule. As they were in the Middle Ages, strewing herbs are scattered over the flagstone flooring, the combination of plants used, including Lady’s Bedstraw, Straw and Lavender give the building a fragrant smell, reminiscent of a warm summer evening, and they also serve as natural insecticides and disinfectant.

The interior is atmospherically illuminated with flickering torches. Flanking the central walkway to the nave there are carved oak wooden benches, covered with warming rugs, on which your guests sit during the ceremony that then become the seating during your ‘Medieval’ Wedding breakfast after which you can end the evening with dancing and much merriment.

With all our knowledge and experience, along with our carefully chosen, suppliers the Friends of the Lost Village of Dode, we have created a Wedding Package to ensure you are getting the very best value for money, the best quality service, whilst working with a passionate team that will help create your ideal ‘I do’.

After booking your Civil ceremony we at The Lost Village of Dode will organise your paperwork with the registration department once your booking is formally complete, thus removing any unnecessary hassle from the planning of your big day.

What is included within your wedding package

What is included within your Lost Village of Dode Wedding Package:

  • A Wedding co-ordinator, to help you book and plan your special day
  • The Instagram-perfect church and grounds, will be exclusively yours on the day
  • Free parking for bridal party cars
  • A rehearsal of your ceremony either within the Norman Church or amongst The Ancient Stones. We believe this is a really important aspect of our wedding package, special to the Lost Village of Dode, so ensuring your day goes to plan
  • Our in-house photographer to capture those all-important moments of your special day
  • Seasonal flowers of your choice in the two urns adjacent to the ceremony area
  • Staff to turn your venue around from a ceremony into your evening Wedding Breakfast
  • A food tasting
  • A two course Wedding Breakfast – a feast that will become legendary amongst your nearest and dearest
  • In-house sound system to play music of your choice
  • A closed and private Facebook account, where we share inspiration from all around the world and you can ask questions confidently in the knowledge that they are not going public
  • If you are holding a Civil Ceremony at the Lost Village of Dode we will reserve your wedding date with Kent County Council An opportunity to book the Cottages, though these are subject to availably.
  • An opportunity to book our superb on-site Cottages, perfect for the bridal party ( subject to availably).

Blessings, renewal of vows, Humanist ceremony and thanksgivings

If you would like to hold a Blessing or you are looking to celebrate a milestone in your married life, at The Lost Village of Dode, you can book a Blessing Ceremony, Renewal of Vows or a Thanksgivings. With a Celebrant conducting your wedding ceremony, at the Lost Village of Dode you can choose to hold your Blessing outside, amongst the unique Stone Circle, in the knowledge that, if there is inclement weather, you can still use the de-consecrated Norman church.

Booking a Blessing is an increasingly popular option, as it enables you to work with your Celebrant to shape your ceremony in any way you like, whether you want to stay traditional or include your own elements. As such you have much more choice in your order of proceedings. You might choose to include a particular style of music and outfits – perhaps something medieval inspired or even a hint of Steam Punk? With an intimate wedding Blessing there are lots of opportunities to make your wedding day truly unique. This historic, memorable and romantic venue enables you to add your own personal twist to your special day.

Enchanting Wedding Breakfast receptions

After your ceremony guests usually spend time in the stunning grounds, enabling you to have your group photos and enjoy a glass of bubbles and perhaps a selection of canapes.

During this time it enables us to set up for your Medieval Style Banquet Wedding Breakfast Reception with all the trimmings. Your Wedding Breakfast might include a hog roast, or a roast lamb, we just ask that you work direct with our caterers, see their details under Friends of the Lost Village of Dode

example wedding breakfast menu* *Subject to change based on seasonally available and locally sourced produced

And to Bed at the Lost Village of Dode

By choosing to hold your wedding or event at the Lost Village of Dode, you can add a final chapter to your epic story. Why not book one of our superb on-site cottages to stay.

the Accommodation

Drinks at the Lost Village of Dode

For your Drinks reception we ask again that you work direct with another of our Friends of Dode. Double bubble van can provide either a converted bike or camper van to serve

drinks menu

Drinks Menu

  • Prosecco
  • Using fully trained and licensed staff
  • An option to personalise your Prosecco with juices & fruits
  • For your evening after party – You can bring in bottles, Ale,
    Cider and Mead – we charge a small fee of xxx for corkage

Extra special touches unique to The Lost Village of Dode

For some extra magic, if you love birds and in particular owls, at The Lost Village of Dode you can also include our feathered friends, to silently carry your precious ring box, in your Order Of The Day.

special touches

Availability

If you want to completely abolish the formality and pressures of a traditional wedding, please be aware we only hold wedding celebrations and events during the summer months, April to end of October, and over Christmas on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturday. Please contact us to discuss your initial requirements.

contact us

If you would like to write your own enchanting, epic love story and get married at the Lost Village of Dode, or you want to celebrate an important family occasion or event that will go down in your family folklore, please just let us have some information (that we promise not to share), that will help us to give you an introduction to your narrative:

Yes, I would like to be kept up to date about Dode.