Venue’s sale leaves couple’s wedding day in ruins

Lorenzo Hickman and Rebecca Kirkpatrick now need to find a new venue
Lorenzo Hickman and Rebecca Kirkpatrick now need to find a new venue

A COUPLE have been left “devastated” after their wedding venue was cancelled two months before they were due to marry.

Lorenzo Hickman and Rebecca Kirkpatrick, of Milton Street, Worthing, had found their dream wedding venue in the South Downs Country Hotel, in Trotton, Hampshire.

Invites had been sent, arrangements for the reception had been made, and guests had put the date in their diary.

But now, the couple face a bill of thousands after they were told by email last Thursday the hotel had been sold and their wedding reception cancelled.

They were told the venue will immediately undergo refurbishment, which is why their service cannot be held on June 22.

The pair are now desperately searching for a new venue with less than two months until their planned big day.

Lorenzo, 21, said: “We’re completely gutted. It’s one of those things that has got to happen to someone but it’s unfortunately happened to us. My fiancée is devastated. For the wedding to fall apart like this at the last minute is really devastating.”

The couple had decided on the date because they met in June, and 22 and 13 are their favourite numbers.

They were due to be married legally in Petersfield register office in front of witnesses, then have a blessing ceremony at the hotel in front of friends and family.

To cancel the register office would cost more than £200, and family members, many of whom would have to travel more than 100 miles, have already put the date in their diaries.

The events manager at South Downs Country Hotel had attempted to find the couple a similar venue, but the shortage of hotel rooms meant it was not suitable.

Rebecca, also 21, said: “When I found out it had been cancelled I was in shock. I sat in front of my computer sceen. We just didn’t expect it to happen and I didn’t react for a while.

“We went to see the back-up venue and I just burst into tears. I was completely devastated.”

Lorenzo and Rebecca had bought wedding insurance, which they believed would cover them if the wedding was cancelled.

But having tried to claim, they were told there was a hidden term and condition which meant the company had to go into bankruptcy or liquidation for compensation to be paid.

Now, they are attempting to book a new venue but have not found anywhere.

Lorenzo added: “Things have gone from bad to worse, but, hopefully, we’ll find something.”