Harry Warren House is a picturesque 19th century country house set in 4 acres of spectacular seaside grounds. Visitors are immediately struck when they round the bend in the drive by the breathtaking sweeping views over the bay, the scale and drama of these are quite unexpected.
The gardens and grounds have interesting features in the nicely laid out conifer garden with many rare species, the steps to the beach, the little amphitheatre, the woodland walk and the bridge over the pond. The grounds are mainly open lawn making them an ideal and flexible venue, giving a choice of sites for a marquee and plenty of room for guests to enjoy the scenery and children to run around and explore.
One of the best views of Old Harry Rocks, the well known chalk cliffs that match up with The Needles on the Isle of Wight, is to be had from Harry Warren. These are a picture postcard landmark with their distinctive outliers of stacks and pinacles. From the top of the bank, guests can look down on the sandy beach with its beach huts and families building sandcastles and also overlook the bay and the pleasure craft and yachts anchored there.
There is some parking at Harry Warren and people who are not mobile can come right to the door. Ample parking is available at the National Trust car park a couple of hundred yards away which means guests walk up the leafy lane which is the start of the cliff path and then come into Harry Warren on foot for the maximum impact. Breathtaking.
Weddings A wedding at Harry Warren can be entirely as you desire, with its wide expanse of lawn it presents a blank canvas. For a sea side or coastal theme it is hard to better without getting your feet wet. You can select a marquee of your choice and arrange everything as you would like. Fill in the details with hog roasts, ice cream trolleys, fire eaters, string quartets, swinging dance bands, fireworks, helicopters, garden games and so on.
The grounds are dominated by the expansive sea view that changes from moment to moment and as dusk falls the lights of Bournemouth twinkle across the water. The beach steps lead directly down to the sandy beach and the lawn overlooks the beach, the cliffs and the bay.
The ready access to the beach - just down the steps, through the gate and you're there - means that swimming is a real possibility. Especially in a heat wave and the Summer House makes an ideal changing room. So if it is a high summer wedding you can put "bring swimming things" on your invitation - your guests can really cool off and the photographer will have plenty of material. The beach is ideal for swimming; a very gently sloping sandy bottom and not too cold.
All times of year have their charm: spring is lovely, summer is a hot, sunny, bright holiday with long, balmy evenings and autumn in Purbeck is a well-kept secret. The holidays are over so things are quieter, the weather is usually warm and fine, and autumn it has its own special colourful, warm, fruitful magic.
For the service you may wish to consider the unspoilt Norman church of St. Nicholas which holds about 120 people and is an easy, picturesque, five minute walk away. This means that your guests do not need to use their cars again, they can simply park once for the whole day in the NT car park by the Bankes Arms, very conveniently equidistant between us and the church. It also means that your guests come to Harry Warren on foot which is by far the best way to arrive to really appreciate it.