Sara & Michael
Belle Epoque Wedding Photographer
Sadly, the Belle Epoque Wedding Venue in Knutsford permanently closed it's doors in 2019 after a long running dispute with the local council.
"We understand…the importance of ensuring your special day is a totally individual occasion. For this reason we don’t offer packages, instead we work with you to create a day in your life that is bespoke in every way. Rather than starch formality, the emphasis is on style, individuality and intimacy. When hiring the venue on an exclusive basis, you are able to have exclusive use of all areas, including our 7 hotel rooms, candle lit ceremony rooms, roof garden, dining room, lounge, bar and dance floor."
The Gaskell Memorial Tower and King's Coffee House (forming the main part of the Belle Époque) are in King Street, Knutsford, Cheshire. As originally built, it had the triple function of being council offices, a coffee house, and a memorial to the novelist Elizabeth Gaskell, a former resident of the town. The building was designed by Richard Harding Watt with assistance from W. Longworth, and was opened in 1907. Its design incorporates features of many styles of architecture, and has not been praised by all critics. The building is recorded in the National Heritage List for England as a designated Grade II listed building owned by Knutsford Town Council.
The former coffee house building along with the tower is constructed mainly in sandstone, its architectural style is described as eclectic, being mainly Italianate, with Arts and Crafts features. Nikolaus Pevsner placed it as "a parallel to Barcelona at the same time", and thought that some motifs might be Byzantine. The main block is the former coffee house, which is in two storeys. The entrance is on the right through a recessed porch, with an octagonal column, above which is an inscribed stone. To the left of the porch is a large oriel window, and in the upper floor are three windows and a stepped parapet. On the left of this is a square tower with a small recessed bow window, above which is a larger window divided by a large transom. On top of the tower is a domed lantern. On the left side of the tower is an external staircase, and a tall round-headed window. Between the main block and the memorial tower, the building in recessed, forming a small courtyard. At the rear of the building is a pair of large Doric columns which had been moved from St Peter's Church in Manchester, and nearby are the wheels that transported them. The memorial tower has a square plan, it is about 21 metres (69 ft) high, it has recessed bow windows on three sides around the bottom. Above the window on the side facing King Street is a stone bust in a niche, and on the right face is a bronze relief, both of which depict Mrs Gaskell. At a higher level than the bust is an offset oriel window, and near the top of the tower are randomly projecting blocks. Near the summit of the tower is an arcade of windows. At the top is an open parapet and turret-like projections. The bust on the King Street face is a copy of a marble bust made in 1897 by Hamo Thornycroft, which is itself a copy of a plaster bust by David Dunbar, which was executed in about 1830–31. This was not present at the formal opening, but was in place by 1913. The sculptor of the relief was Achille d'Orsi. In 1898 Watt has placed it on the front of Knutsford post office, and it was later moved to the tower.On the right side of the tower, above the bronze relief, is carved a list of Mrs Gaskell's novels.