When you think “Lowcountry,” what comes to mind? Is it sprawling oak trees with heavy, trailing branches that are dripping in ropes of Spanish moss? Is it calm, serene waters home to wild birds and swimming fish? Or is it sprawling meadows of green grass dappled with thick, leafy magnolia trees? Runnymede, a former plantation-turned-event space, is a unique venue for a wedding that exudes Lowcountry charm. Keep reading to learn more about what makes the Runnymede wedding venue an elegant yet rustic affair.
Runnymede Venue, like Charleston, has a rich – and not always pretty – history. Someone has settled on the property since the original 300 acres were first granted in 1705. A mansion was soon built, but it had unfortunately burned to the ground by the time the property changed hands several decades later. A new mansion took place, and the property was named Runnymede for its similarity to the English Runnymede across the ocean. Both featured a large oak tree in the middle of the property, surrounded by meadows overlooking beautiful rivers.
In 1865, the second iteration of the Runnymede mansion was burned to the ground by Union Troops during the Civil War. The then-owner rebuilt a third home (rumored to be one of the earliest Victorian-style homes in the area.) The mansion stood strong for another hundred and thirty years, even withstanding damages from Hurricane Hugo in 1989.
Then, in 2022, Runnymede’s beautiful mansion burned to the ground for a third time, leaving behind only a two-story brick chimney and a bell inscribed with the date “1704.” Today, those ruins hauntingly remain on the property, adding a totally unique aesthetic to the venue. The surrounding property, however, has completely bounced back from ruin time and time again. The lawns are green and thriving, the trees are flourishing, and the river runs clear and sparkling blue. Runnymede is a true testament to the notion that time heals all.
Runnymede is a dynamic wedding venue that resembles something from a Lowcountry fairy tale.
The venue does have a bridal suite, but it’s quite cozy and small. If you have a large wedding party, you’ll want to consider getting ready for your wedding day at a nearby Airbnb or hotel with all of your favorite people. Then, you can use the onsite suite to catch a quick breath throughout the day and store your personal belongings.
For your ceremony, you and your partner can exchange vows standing before the property’s exquisite thousand-year-old oak tree. This magnificent tree is as gnarly as it is elegant, and its branches are so long and heavy that they rest on the ground. Drape the branches in elegant drapery or your signature florals for an extra special touch. You and your partner will be surrounded by dripping Spanish moss and authentic Lowcountry décor.
After you’re officially married, your guests can enjoy a cocktail hour mingling amongst the remains of the most recent Runnymede mansion. A two-story brick chimney stretches into the sky, ethereal and haunting, as do several other brick remains. Place candles, lounge furniture, and cocktail tables throughout the space for an aesthetic that’s as formal or casual as you want.
Your reception will take place beneath a large event tent over wooden plank floors that look inviting and elegant. Dress up the tent with dramatic drapery or fun light fixtures with hanging greenery. The tent’s neutral aesthetics make it ideal for transforming into your dream wedding, with a custom color palette and florals.
Runnymede is a true blank canvas of a venue, allowing you to bring your unique style and vision to your wedding.
Photo by Gideon Photography
As an experienced wedding photographer, I can confidently reassure you that Runnymede is rich with photo opportunities that may be unlike any other venue. First, we’ll take plenty of photos incorporating the surrounding woodlands and scrubby mosses for photos embracing the Lowcountry feel. These spots are great for romantic couple photos or group shots with your wedding parties and family members. The House Ruins are also great for moody, romantic photos, with the rich brick in the backdrop. Should you choose that route, it’s also a great spot for a first look.
The Point, another property area with ancient oak trees and open meadows, has beautiful views of the Ashley River. We can take waterfront portraits that will take your breath away, especially during golden hour when the setting sun reflects off of the water.
There are many incredible ways to take advantage of Runnymede’s beautiful property in photos. I promise your wedding album will be full of gorgeous pictures you’ll treasure for the rest of your lives.
When planning your Runnymede wedding, there are a few simplistic details to keep in mind.
First, you are more than welcome to use any catering vendor you’d like, including food trucks! If you need a good recommendation, the Runnymede events team is happy to provide them. You’ll save a good chunk of money using their preferred bartending company. However, you can always pay the additional fee and choose your own.
You’ll also need to enlist the help of a professional coordinator/planner. I know a planner always seems like the first compromise of wedding planning, especially when reviewing your budget, but I promise you’ll be so glad you hired one. They’ll be able to coordinate all of your vendors, put out any fires (not that there will be any on your wedding day), and give you full peace of mind as you relax into enjoying every moment of your wedding day.
For an extra special touch (and a small extra fee), you can also utilize their fire pit for an extra cozy touch as the sun sets on your wedding day.
A wedding at the Runnymede venue is the epitome of Lowcountry elegance. With endless opportunities to transform the space into your dream wedding, it’s the perfect venue for a couple who loves Southern charm with a little bit of history sprinkled in.
I would love to photograph your Runnymede wedding – let’s connect so we can start talking about how we can use this incredible property on your special day!