Sunday Observer Online


Sunday, 8 November 2009





Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette

Treated to an English manor

What better way to enjoy the blissful country of England than experience the beauty and charm of a typical manor. The first I ever saw was the Sundridge Park Manor in Kent which is a 10 quid(pound) taxi ride from the Sundridge Park station. Sundridge Park is a hidden gem in the suburbs of Bromley that is easily accessible from Central London and the M25 making it less than seven miles, as the crow flies, from the centre of London.

Sundridge is situated in the north of the London borough of Bromley, in the ward of Plaistow and Sundridge. Sundridge is south of Grove Park in the London borough of Lewisham. On the west side of Sundridge is Downham (which although most parts being in the London borough of Lewisham) is for the most part in the BR postcode area.

Boasting of a rich and impressive history, the Manor has hosted parties of the royal circles for centuries. Set on 6 acres of gardens, the Manor is the most beautiful venue to have your wedding as it offers the best wedding photography with its picturesque scenery and notably delicious food.

Dating back to 1254AD, the Sundridge Park Estate even stood in its glory during the time of the Black Prince.

You can see the intricate mosiacs and creativity of specially-appointed architect John Nash, who worked tirelessly to create not just a manor but a work of architectural art, influenced by Roman architecture. The Billiard Room, Prince Regent Ballroom, John Nash Lounge and Garden Room all benefit from original fireplaces, ornate plaster work and great views of the gardens making it a lovely place to relax and unwind. Intricate period features, ornate ceilings and sparkling crystal chandeliers provide a striking backdrop of life at the Manor.

The stunning backdrops of lush scenery is definitely first class and the close proximity of the Sundridge Park Golf Club makes it a great way to learn the fine art of this gentlemanís game. Nestled comfortably among quiet residential roads, the Sundridge Park Golf Club claims to be the Worldís closest 36 hole golf club to a major metropolitan centre. So we dabbled in a bit of golf sipping some cool Pimmís (fruit cocktail) but later, found out that they have archery, laser clay pigeon shooting, circus skills, duck herding, fly casting and falconry in addition to numerous problem-solving team activities for corporate Ďaway dayí.

Stepping outside to catch a breath of fresh air, saunter breezily on the well-manicured garden designed by landscape architect Humphrey Repton who initially recognised the potential of the estate as an imposing family seat for the Scott family and made preliminary plans for the building and surrounding area.

It is as though you have stepped into a time machine and you love it so much that you donít want to go back to the present age. Getting married or just escaping the hustle and bustle of everyday life at a Manor certainly makes you feel like royalty.

Itís no wonder you feel this way because the Sundridge Park Manor is a Grade I listed venue in Bromley that was built in 1797. The tranquil terraced gardens makes the Manor a quiet and beautiful location to give you ease of mind.

The Manor gives the chance for 70 to sit down at the wedding meal, so if you are one of the lucky ones, you can see your name and menu preference labelled neatly on your position of the table to make you feel special.

The bride and groom can look forward to a blissful wedded tying the knot at the Sundridge Manor and you can have a different perception of life after staying here.

After dancing till you drop after a beautiful wedding and a great escapade, the time will come for you to get back to London when you get to the Sundridge Park station that is located between Bromley and Grove Park, on Plaistow Lane, Bromley, on the northern edge of the borough of Bromley.

The stationís namesake Sundridge Park Golf Course is located about 500m north-east of the station. So experience an English Manor, even if itís too expensive to get married in one!

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