Five Tips for Planning an Event

If you’re organising an event such as a large party or a wedding there are clearly a good number of things to think about. Most of us know what these are but sometimes need to be reminded of them (that’s, after all, why management consultants exist).

No risk about huge fees for advice on this occasion, though. We contacted Redcrest Events who have many years of experience in providing, erecting and decorating marquees for events large and small and asked them to list a few things people should consider before even picking up the phone to a hire company. So – here goes:

How many guests? An easy and obvious one to start with. You’ll probably already have drawn up a list of guests so that you have a rough idea of numbers. You’ll then need to think about how much flexibility you’ll need. Some event numbers can change depending on late refusals or late invitations. Is this likely to be the case with yours? Based on this, estimate the minimum and maximum numbers. The beauty of a marquee is that the size can be changed at any time to cater for the number of guests but some configurations lend themselves better to this than others. You’ll also need to consider if your venue can accommodate late additions to the footprint. If it’s going to be a sit-down do then space calculations will obviously be more critical than for a stand-up one.

Have you chosen your venue? It is wise to arrange an early meeting at the venue to ensure that the conditions are appropriate for a marquee. You might also want (for this and other reasons) to get a reference from someone who has used a marquee at that venue before. If you use a local marquee-hire firm, the chances are that they will know the venue and will be aware of any issues such as access or drainage which might otherwise cause problems when setting up or on the day. A reputable marquee-hire firm will also offer a free site visit in order to check the grounds and surroundings and to discuss your plans and ideas in more detail. They may have a few suggestions of their own. To pick but one example, depending on the time of year and whether you are planning to have the marquee on grass, on gravel or on a patio area, you may need to consider hard flooring. They’ll be able to advise.

What else will you need? Think about facilities – do you require toilets, generators, heating, tables, chairs or rubbish disposal? If you attend a marquee event while you’re still planning your own, have a look round and see what kind of things your hosts have provided. You might also ask where they got them from. Some of these may be available from the venue you’ll be using but others may not be. Again, a good hire firm will be able to provide or source these for you and install them during the set-up. It should also be able to make recommendations for a range of other services such as caterers, florists, entertainers and photographers.

Ask questions as you like! We’ve suggested checking the venue with past users of a venue and asking other hosts about their facility hire. Unless choosing, siting, erecting and equipping a marquee for an event is your speciality (and the chances are it isn’t) then ask as many people as possible who’ve held events about their experiences. It’s quite possible someone may suggest something you hadn’t considered. An experienced marquee-hire firm will have been through this all before so should be able to anticipate most of your questions and have solutions ready.

Last but not least – have fun with your planning! Whether it’s a wedding, a surprise birthday party or even a festival that you are arranging, the important thing is to enjoy every step of the way. This is your special day, so relax – if you find the right people to help you everything’s going to work out just fine…

Redcrest Events can help with all the things mentioned above (and more). Please feel free to get in touch on 01488 638 993 or email You can also visit their website at

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Penny Post


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