A COVID Reception



Planning a small wedding in light of the coronavirus pandemic has become the new norm in 2020. There is no right answer on the decision couples make in light of whether they consider getting married now to be more important or to delay things for that big celebration further down the line. It is ultimately their personal preference. 

At Riddle’s Court we have had both scenarios, where couples have opted to hold off until next year and beyond in the hope that larger celebrations will go ahead in some capacity, and other couples who have wanted to explore options for the autumn and winter periods.


Wedding Ceremony in the City Chambers


For Jess & Ethan, getting married on the 17th September 2020 was what was most important to them. Travelling to Edinburgh with their nearest and dearest, having already had to reschedule their wedding with different venues on numerous occasions before the big day eventually arrived. Intending to get married at the Registry Office, they had hoped to host their reception in a nearby restaurant – a socially distant meal for 15 guests. Following a local government announcement restricting the number of households that could meet in a restaurant, their booking was cancelled. Luckily for Jess & Ethan, Jess’s mum did her own research and found Riddle’s Court. With exclusive use, the bright Library Room at Riddle’s Court would suit them perfectly.


The Library Room at Riddle's Court, ready for a socially distant reception


So with only a week to go, the couple got in touch and secured a booking with Riddle’s Court. The team has organised full weddings in 5-6 weeks in the past, but seven days to prepare was an ultimate record! Between drawing up the seating plans to account for different households, stocking up for the bar and sourcing suitable decorations, the Library Room was transformed into a beautiful evening wonderland full of fairy lights and flowers.


Socially distant wedding reception at Riddle's Court


Our onsite catering team at Scott’s Kitchen were kind enough to cater a three-course meal from their kitchen, and supply the perfect space for a drinks reception beforehand downstairs overlooking Victoria Terrace. And, luckily for the couple, our onsite apartment, the King’s Chamber was available for them to retire to. Everything came together so easily in the week of planning, that by the time Jess and Ethan first visited Riddle’s Court the day before, all they had to do was drop off the cake and carry out some last minute decorating!

The day itself was a beautiful, intimate and relaxed occasion. Although, for the team it felt unusually strange to think that earlier in the year we had been catering for weddings of up to 60 guests and more! After a beautiful ceremony at the City Chambers with their loved ones, the family came to Riddle’s Court and enjoyed a wonderful evening full of food, drink, cake and some emotional video messages from loved ones unable to attend.


Reacting to wedding messages from absent loved ones


Jess and Ethan were wonderful to work with, and the team at Riddle’s Court were delighted that we could help rescue what should be one of the happiest days of their lives.  With lots more ceremonies and receptions scheduled there is still plenty to keep the team here on their toes!

If you are interested in a smaller ceremony at Riddle’s Court, please email the team via events@riddlescourt.org.uk or call us 0131 510 8789. With the role out of a COVID vaccine planned, we are planning optimistically for larger events in 2021 and dates are filling up fast – please get in touch for more information.

Stay safe!


A photo opportunity on the Royal Mile close to Riddle's Court


Photography by Littles and Loves by Francesca

Photography by Fern Photography