Top 10 FAQs when hiring a marquee

10 FAQs when hiring a wedding marquee

Top 10 FAQs when hiring a marquee, all the useful info! These are the burning questions that brides and grooms need to know when planning a marquee wedding. Hopefully some of these answers will help you with your planning, but we love to chat weddings, so if you have any questions for us that aren’t covered here please do get in touch.

1.How big are the flower rings and how do they work?

Our flower rings are 1.8m in diameter and are hung from a pulley system at the highest point on a king pole which we install when we set up the marquee. The metal flower ring encircles the wooden king pole at a height of approx 3m, this height is pre-set by us when we install the pulley system ready for your florist to come along and create floral magic.

 

Here is the ‘naked’ flower ring made from 20mm rolled steel tube before it’s filled full of beautiful blooms! This might be useful to pass onto your florist so that they can see the workings and how they might approach fixing the flowers to the flower ring. 

naked flower ring

 

Your chosen florist will untie the pulley system and lower the ‘naked’ flower ring to start working on it at whatever height is comfortable for them and then when finished, they can easily use the pulley system to raise it to the set height and clip it back onto the pulley bar provided. 

 

We’ve seen some amazing flower rings from the simplicity of delicate green foliage to a riot of colourful flowers. If you need any floral inspo head to the floral architecture on our website and for recommendations on Yorkshire florists, head to our Little Black Book section of our website. 

 

2. What size and type of trees work best in a Wills?

 

Trees are a great way to decorate your marquee inside and out. They offer drama, height and fit perfectly with the natural palette of materials of canvas, wood and rope that is a Wills marquee. Trees also offer a sustainable way to decorate as they can be grown or bought from a garden nursery and re-planted as a memento in your own garden or hired.

 

We recommend silver birch trees in pots inside the marquee as their growing shape of an arrowhead lends itself to fit nicely against a king pole where the canvas canopy of the marquee is at its highest point. When used against a king pole, the tree itself should be no taller than 3m so that it doesn’t rub against the canvas. Remember, if you are using the trees in different areas of the marquee, then the maximum height will differ to follow the swooping roofline of the canvas canopy.

 

Trees also look great either side of the entrance into the marquee, providing a defined route for your guests, blurring the line between the outside and inside. Tree’s used in this way should be no taller than 2m and staked down so that they stay away from the canvas and in place for the big day. 

 

3. Do I need a heater?

 

A tricky question to answer! We would definitely recommend a heater outside of the summer months of June, July and August, because even if you have the hottest day forecast, the evenings are always cool in April, May and September. 

 

Our heaters sit outside of the marquee and blow hot air into the marquee which is controlled inside by a thermostat. They will run for approx 12hrs to keep you warm and toasty whilst you party away with your friends and family. We usually place heaters at the rear of the marquee behind canvas walls so that they can’t be seen by guests, so, if you have a guest who feels the cold, that is where to place them – top tip!

In the main, one heater will be sufficient to keep all your guests warm no matter what the British summertime throws at us, however If you have one of our larger Wills 12/42 marquees or two tents, then you may want to consider a second heater, but we can advise on that so that you get what’s right for you.

 

4. How big are the tables?

 

Boring, but essential information that you’ll need to know if ordering table cloths, runners etc and trying to work out how much room there is for everything on the table ….

 

  • Standard trestle table – 6ft x 2ft6” to seat up to 6 guests
  • Rustic trestle table – 6ft x 3ft to seat up to 6 guests
  • Round table – 6ft in diameter to seat 10 -12 guests 
  • Round table – 5ft6” in diameter to seat 8-10 guests
  • Oval table – 14ft x 4ft to seat up to 14 guests

 

One other thing to note on the trestle tables is that there isn’t room to seat a guest on the ends of a table (just 3 guests on either side). The rustic trestles are a little wider, so you could perhaps seat a young child at the ends of the table or a high chair with it’s own tray if needs be and the table planning is tricky!

 

If you’d like any help with the layout of your tables in the marquee we love creating our amazing 3D and 2D layouts which are fantastic at helping you visualise the space inside of the marquee. We can even change it in real time over the phone with you to go through different scenarios, so please do ask!

 

5. Do I need a hard floor?

 

Nine times out of ten, no. We do the vast majority of our marquees without hard flooring using our matting option with a waterproof membrane underneath, but it is a great option when the ground is known to be waterlogged, lifting the heavy footfall off the ground and preventing any water and dirt soaking through. 

 

A hard floor won’t level the ground for you, but will simply follow the lay of the land as with our matting option. To level the ground completely, you would need a levelling platform on which to create a hard floor on top of. 

 

For some couples, they just prefer the finish of a hard floor with a carpet on top and the choice of colour that provides. It is an expensive and less sustainable option though, as the carpet is one off use and has to be disposed of properly after the event, whereas our matting is washed after every use and re-used. 

 

If you need help deciding, we can come along to look at the site with you to see if it’s suitable as it is, or advise on any work that may need to be done to make sure the day is perfect for you.

 

6. What days do you set up and take down?

 

Our teams are out on site setting up marquees on Wednesdays and Thursdays throughout the summer months. We aim to arrive with you by 9-9:30 and depending on the size of the marquee and furnishings we are usually finished the same day leaving you and your wedding suppliers free to start decorating and setting up your custom built wedding venue! 

 

We will arrive back with you on either Sunday or Monday to dismantle the marquee usually at 10am on Sunday and 9am on Monday.

 

Some couples prefer a Wednesday set up in order to maximise the preparation time before the wedding day and some prefer the time after the main event either for a ‘mini do’ on the Sunday or just a lie in followed by a slow clean up operation! We try to be as flexible as we can.

 

Just like magic, it will all have disappeared without a trace, but you’ll be left with amazing memories to last a lifetime.

 

7. Can I personalise the flags?

 

Yes, of course! Our flags match the natural canvas colour of the canopy of a Wills, but you can personalise them to anything whether that’s a Yorkshire rose, the initials of the bride and groom or simply different colours. 

 

We can point you in the right direction to get the flags made to the right specification, so just get in touch and we’ll fly your flags with pride!

 

8. Do the fairy lights give off enough light?

 

Absolutely. Our warm white fairy lights looks pretty by day and by night even prettier with a cosy glow, creating a magical atmosphere. We take the lights from the bottom of the canvas canopy, to the very highest point in beautiful swooping lines. 

 

Later on, when the band or disco starts up and the dance floor fills, you may well be thinking of having disco lights, mirror balls and or/ projected lights, at which time you can turn down the fairy light glow using a dimmer switch and crank up the coloured lights for a real party vibe. Perfect.

 

Head to our lighting section on our website or our youtube channel to see the lights in action. 

 

9. Can I see a marquee set up?

 

Yes, we usually hold an open day at a venue which is a perfect opportunity to view the marquee with a good selection of all our furnishings that we offer to help you to visualise your choices and layout in the flesh. Unfortunately, it’s not been possible for us to do that due to the restrictions around COVID and the re-scheduling of postponed weddings, but we’ll be back with our open days in 2023 – watch this space! 

 

In addition to our fantastic open days, we love showing couples around our marquees at live set ups across Yorkshire (with permission of course!). Where possible, we aim to show you the closest match to your requirements so that you get a good idea of space and choice of furnishings in a location nearest to you. We do this throughout the summer months, so please do let us know if you’d like to view and we’ll be delighted to arrange it for you … there’s nothing like seeing the Wills differences in the flesh.

 

If you live overseas or away from your chosen venue, we can provide fantastic 3D and 2D images for you to virtually ‘walk’ through and we can make tweaks until you are completely happy with your marquee and layout. You can also follow us on Pinterest and  instagram and the #itsawills for lots of inspiration.

 

10. What have I forgotten?! 

Ahh, the million dollar question!! Usually nothing, but it’s good to chat everything though to talk about where everything will go, last minute changes to guest numbers, that all important cake table, power requirements and the other suppliers involved in making your day extra special. 

 

Our top tip is to introduce all your suppliers to each other, the chances are that we’ve worked together before and know what each other provides. If we haven’t, we’ll make sure that we’ve linked up with them beforehand to check everyone’s got everything they need to make your day runs without any hiccups. 

 

Need extra help with wedding planning, or with on-the day coordination? We know some excellent planners who can help you, just head to our Little Black Book and happy wedding planning! 


If you have any burning questions that we’ve not answered here in our top 10 FAQs when hiring a marquee, please let us know at [email protected], thanks!

 

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