Harrogate is special for two reasons. Firstly, it has distinct royal connections, with the Duchy of Lancaster having been the principal landowner in the town in the 1300s. The legacy of this can still be seen today – most notably in the continued protection of an area of public open space called The Stray, which was created by the Enclosure Act of 1778. It can also be seen in the impressive Grade II listed Royal Pump Room, originally constructed to house one of the town’s spring water pumps, but which is now a museum. Secondly, Harrogate is a ‘spa town,’ meaning it developed into its present guise around the discovery of a mineral spring, thought to provide medicinal properties. William Slingsby discovered the first mineral spring in Harrogate in 1571, and the spring water was found to be rich in sulphur and iron. This attracted many wealthy visitors to the area in search of possible solutions to their own ill health – boosting the economy.
The name of Slingsby is today synonymous with the Spirit of Harrogate gin range, which uses water drawn from the legendary Harrogate aquifer, along with local, hand-grown botanicals. This enterprise joins a long tradition of food and drink created in the area – including Taylors of Harrogate, Farrah’s Toffee, Harrogate Blue Cheese, Debbie and Andrews Harrogate Sausages and, of course, Harrogate Spring Water.
Today, the local economy is most heavily based in conferencing and exhibition services, and the town is home to the one of the largest fully integrated conference and exhibition centres in Europe – the Harrogate International Centre. In addition, the Pavilions of Harrogate and the Great Yorkshire Showground are popular conferencing venues. This very specific local economy – with its focus today, and historically, in hospitality for visitors – means that Harrogate is uniquely placed to provide exceptional wedding venues for betrothed couples. Thief Hall is among the best of those venues, because it has been specially created to exude that Harrogate spirit of hospitality.
A warm welcome for all
Thief Hall was originally an old sheep barn, until it was lovingly converted and restored by owners Jessica Barker and her husband, Phillip. Work was completed in 2015, and the property made its debut as a unique wedding venue that same year. With its clean and modern finish, and its retention of open beams, Thief Hall is intended to be an unrestricted ‘blank canvas’ – meaning that betrothed couples are welcomed in to put their own, distinctive touch to the entire venue, in order to truly personalise their special day.
Any wedding booking includes exclusive use of the venue for three whole days, which not only means the barn – for civil ceremonies and celebrations – but also for accommodation. Thief Hall boasts six beautifully appointed, luxury, five-star self-catering cottages on site which, in combination, can host over 26 guests for two nights. With inclusivity being the name of the game here, one of the cottages is even pet-friendly. In keeping with the atmosphere of the Harrogate area, relaxation for guests is the ultimate goal when it comes to these cottages - so each has its own hot tub that takes full advantage of the stunning vistas surrounding the venue as a whole, and are the perfect spots to which guests and hosts alike can retire, after the festivities draw to a close. These views come courtesy of its location – on a hillside in historic Thornton-Le-Moor, providing a real North Yorkshire panorama across the Vale of York.
Those festivities are the warm, beating heart of Thief Hall, and Jessica Barker and her highly experienced team are on hand to ensure everything runs smoothly – through the planning process and on the day itself. A Thief Hall wedding comes with wedding planning support and coordination on the day, as well as:
- A fully stocked and staffed bar;
- Tables, linens, chairs, and more;
- Rooms licensed for civil ceremonies;
- Outdoor wedding options.
The possibilities are endless at Thief Hall, and the team are keen to encourage couples to approach the planning of their special day with as much creativity and imagination as possible. The ‘no restrictions’ policy extends to finish times, in that there are none, so flexibility is built right in to this wedding venue.
As a wedding destination, the Harrogate area cannot be beat. Its royal connections lend an atmosphere of grandeur to any event, while the stunning landscapes provide distinctive backdrops for any photography or video. Its history and development as a spa town means that public transport links are readily available in the area, while additional activities and tourist attractions are in abundance.
Any wedding held here can provide ample opportunity to enhance a stay with trips to walk the beautiful spaces of Brimham Rocks, Fountains Abbey, Ripley Castle, the Royal Horticultural Society Garden Harlow Carr, or Fewston Reservoir. For those with a specific interest in history, the Royal Pump Room Museum, Knaresborough Castle, and the Courthouse Museum are all available to visit with an annual pass. Luxury and relaxation can be found at the Turkish Baths of Harrogate, and also at The Harrogate Spa, which also provides fitness and wellness services. As could be expected of an area renowned for its hospitality, the opportunities for fine dining are also countless, with a wide range of cuisine on offer, and perhaps the most iconic North Yorkshire restaurant brand of all, Betty’s of Harrogate. This area truly provides something for everyone.
Most notably, Harrogate is nestled in the heart of stunning North Yorkshire countryside. It is surrounded by the Yorkshire Dales and the Vale of York, and its position in relation to the Pennines means it has a climate that dry and mild – surely a bonus for any time spent at a Yorkshire wedding, and one that the Thief Hall team are always happy to help couples and their families capitalise on. If any venue can recommend ways to add sparkle and memories to a wedding day, it is Thief Hall in the Harrogate area.
What We Offer
Thief Hall is a barn conversion restored in stunning style, offering a blank canvas venue with open beams and a clean modern finish. The venue is surrounded by the beautiful countryside of North Yorkshire, the perfect backdrop for your special day! Included with the venue you will receive:
- Exclusive 3 day hire
- Accommodation for 2 nights for 26+ guests
- 4 cottages with hot tubs
- Wedding planning support throughout with coordination on the day
- Fully licensed to hold civil ceremony weddings
- Fully stocked and staffed bar
- Outdoor Weddings available
- No restrictions or stipulations
- Tables, chairs, linen and more!
- Marquees Permitted
"We had our wedding at Thief Hall and it was perfect right down to the last detail. The entire team at Thief Hall are amazing! Thank you so much for an unforgettable weekend!”
- Wayne & Louise Morton
“We have had the most wonderful time here, celebrating our wedding! Everyone has been fantastic and the cottages are utterly stunning; everyone of our family and friends loved it. Thank you so much for making our wedding so special!”
- Danielle & Steven Bell
“I don't know where to start!! The most perfect venue for our wedding! A total blank canvas to work with and so much scope to make your wedding personal!”
- Lizzie James
“What can we say! Jess and Phil are outstanding! The attention to detail, support and service from the day we booked 18 months ago right up until now has been faultless.”
- Dan & David Whitelock
“OMG! Me and Ollie have had the best wedding ever, you have made it just perfect. Jess and the team, we could not have asked for more. Thank you se very much from the bottom of our hearts. All of our love and thanks xx”
- Ollie & Chelsie Anderson
“To Jessica, Katy and all the amazing team, Thank you so much for all of your help to make our wedding day so special! You helped everything flow so smoothly and couldn’t have been more helpful and attentive. All our guests loved a Cottages and it made such a difference celebrating with everyone together all weekend. Thief Hall is a really stunning venue and you and the team do an amazing job making the wedding is truly spectacular for everyone. Thank you for all your hard work”
- Caroline and Paul
“To Hannah and Jess, Thank you very much for everything. Our wedding couldn’t have gone any smoother, there wasn’t a single hair out of place you were amazing. Everyone of our guests complimented on the venue and the way everything was arranged and organised. This weekend has just been magical. We are both still on cloud nine. It has been a photo of a wedding from start to finish. A big massive thank you to Jessica, you are a dream. You have made this weekend the happiest of our entire life. You are a superstar, Hannah, you looked after Stevie and I from start to finish, we couldn’t have asked for a better wedding planner. You kept me calm throughout the day and always check that we had everything in hand. Once again thank you for the special weekend/wedding day XXX”
- Debbie and Stevie
“Jessica and all in the amazing team at Thief Hall, what can we say? Thank you so much for an amazing weekend. Our wedding was everything we dreamed of and more. You guys were amazing from start to finish & we can't thank you enough. For such a popular venue with weddings more weekends and mid-weeks you do everything to make the bride and groom feel so special. There were so many extra thoughtful touches that made the weekend so special. Jess, You are some kind of wizard in keeping the day running so smoothly and thinking of things that we completely over looked. Our guests had the best day yesterday and those staying in the cottages and glamping tents all said how wonderful everything was. The welcome hampers are a lovely touch. We can't wait to come back and perhaps have a slightly more relaxed stay! Thank you SO SO much!!!!”
- Gavin and Helen
“Thank you so much for all the hard-work over the last 9 months and for always being there for us with any query or question we had! This weekend has been a dream come true (a wacky very colourful dream but a dream of ours!) and your "blank canvas" made the perfect backdrop for it all to take place! From dropping of car loads on the Thursday to supporting us on the Friday, from stealthily making out day run like clockwork to allowing us to stay an extra night on the Sunday to enjoy the beautiful sunset! you guys have all been amazing! We thank you all a million times over!”
- Sam and Will
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