Our guide to the very best unique wedding venues in the east midlands

Wedding Venues

A few months back I set out on a mission to find the best unique & alternative wedding venues venues in the East Midlands. Its often too difficult to find those alternative, quirky and unusual gems which offer something a little bit different.

When you’re hunting for venues all the ‘usual’ ones come up but, most likely the best ‘unique’ venues are hidden beneath the surface. Usually this is because they aren’t primarily a wedding venue.  They could be a museum, a university or a cinema! It takes  a bit of digging.  My journey took me into central Nottingham, Leicester & Loughborough to find the very best wedding venues to share! 


So, here is my guide to the very best alternative & unique wedding venues in the East Midlands. Tighten your seat belts! Here we go! 

Photo courtesy of Page 7 Photography

The best outdoor wedding venues in the East Midlands

Unique, Unusual and alternative wedding venues - national space centre
Photo Lee Garland Photography

National Space Centre

You may not know that I am a big fan of the National Space Centre in Leicester. 


Where else can you get married underneath a rocket tower, in a planetarium with a  360 degree starlit sky, or, under a real Soyuz space capsule?  


It truly is one of a kind. Voted best town wedding venue in the East Midlands at the Wedding Industry Awards, this Leicester wedding venue offers a stunning, quirky backdrop with its wide range of flexible spaces. It can hold small intimate receptions  as well as larger celebrations of up to 300 guests. 


To sum it up they also offer space cocktails! I don’t know about you but I’m in! 

unique, unusual and alternative wedding venues - the national space centre
Photo Lee Garland Photography
Nottingham wedding venue


Onto another of my choices for one of the best alternative wedding venues in Nottingham. The National Justice Museum is hidden away in the Lace Market, Nottingham. A central location close to hotels and nightlife. The museum is housed in what used to be a Victorian Courtroom, prison and police station.  It’s the perfect City Centre, Nottingham wedding venue. 


You can hire individual rooms or the entire venue. From the 19th century jury room (which holds up to 80 people for a sit down wedding breakfast), or, the Shire Hall which offers a majestic backdrop for welcome drinks. In addition, there’s the perfect dramatic setting for speeches or photos in the Victorian Civil Court Room.  After that, you can venture down into the prison for some truly quirky wedding photos including one at the Hangmans noose! 


Check out more about weddings at the National Justice Museum in our Gothic wedding inspired blog here

Photos courtesy of Vicki Clayson Photographyy

Great Central Railway

How about having your wedding reception on a vintage train as it travels through the countryside? Perhaps your a trainspotter or just love all things vintage? Then the Great Central Railway in Loughborough, Leicestershire is the one for you. 

It’s a truly unique Leicester wedding venue. We love how it’s been featured in loads of movies including Harry Potter! The perfect vintage wedding backdrop or for those who just love the countryside. 

Want to see more about what the Great Central Railway has to offer? Head over to our vintage wedding inspired blog here (as featured on Unconventional Wedding).

Photos courtesy of IsoElegant Photography
Nottingham wedding venue

The Arkwright Rooms

Onto the another of my choices for  the best unique & alternative wedding venues in the East Midlands and now we’re headed to Nottingham. I visited the Arkwright Rooms and it was a pleasure it was to discover this stunning Grade II listed building nestled in the heart of Nottingham City Centre. 

I’m an obsessive about natural light and these rooms have it by the bucket load. Floor to ceiling, victorian windows stacked with original detail. The rooms are truly unique yet also provide the perfect canvas for you to personalise your wedding day.


There is a wide range of spaces including the Old Library, the Old Chemistry Theatre (yes – a chemistry theatre!), or, the Old Museum (which used to house Nottingham’s Natural History Museum). Afterwards you can head out into the Benefactors court, or, into the vaulted ceilings of the Nottingham conference centre. As you can see from the photos, both are perfect photo opportunities. A truly stunning space which will take your breath away. 

inside the arkwright rooms nottingham - unique, alternative and unusual wedding venue
unique, alternative and unusual wedding venues - the arkwright rooms - exterior
Photo HBA Photography
Entrance to the Arkwright rooms - unusual wedding venues
the arkwright rooms - unique, alternative and unusual wedding venues in nottingham

Nottingham Contemporary Museum

There are very few industrial wedding venues in the East Midlands. Until you visit the Nottingham Contemporary Museum in the heart of Nottingham City Centre.

I was so excited when I visited this wedding venue. Yes it is a huge, blank concrete canvas – but that is its beauty. It is striking, breath taking and versatile. Can you hear my imagination going into overload?


There are two main spaces for weddings – both of which are on the lower ground floor. The largest of which is called ‘The Space’ and it is literally that! It has has its own digital projection facilities and a full audio/visual mixing suite on the balcony. The perfect space for creating breathtaking effects and projections on the concrete walls. The cafe bar can be hired out with its floor to ceiling windows overlooking the outdoor terrace. Think EPIC modern, industrial wedding!


At the last time of checking, Nottingham Contemporary will only take wedding bookings at short notice due to demands on their space. If you are looking to book your wedding venue in a short time frame – this could be the one for you! Pick up the phone now

unique, alternative and unusal wedding venue - nottingham contemporary the space
Photo Thomas Thomas Photography
Nottingham wedding venue

The Savoy cinema

Our last unique wedding venue takes us to the Savoy Cinema, Nottingham. If you’re both huge movie fans then getting married in a cinema will tick all the boxes. 

Steeped in heritage, the Savoy Cinema is the only surviving pre World War 2 cinema remaining in Nottingham. Just outside of the city centre in Lenton, you can get married at this Nottingham wedding venue in front of the big screen in front of up to 300 guests. They’ll even let you decorate with your own favourite movie posters right next to the popcorn machines! In addition, you can use the projector for your favourite film for wedding entertainment. At the time of writing it was available for wedding ceremonies from 10am to 6pm. 

All details correct at the time of writing – please confirm details with venues at the time of enquiry.  In conclusion, we LOVE all alternative quirky and unusual wedding venues. 

the savoy cinema - alternative wedding venue nottingham

Nottingham & leicester wedding planner

Real Wedding Inspiration

Photo Kirsty rockett photography