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The Old Milking Parlour at Cavokay House

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Licensed by Somerset County Council for civil wedding ceremonies (click for info)

The Old Milking Parlour lies in an idyllic rural setting in the grounds of Cavokay House, near the village of Henstridge, Somerset - which puts the venue within easy reach of Dorset and Wiltshire. Nearby towns are Shaftesbury, Wincanton, Sturminster Newton, Gillingham, Mere, Sherborne and Yeovil.


It is, as the name implies, an old farm milking parlour. Parts of the building date from circa 1730 and cow chains still hang from the walls.


The Old Milking Parlour is an 'exclusive use' venue and is available for wedding ceremonies and wedding receptions.


The Building

The building is constructed of the local stone (Forest Marble) and so retains its old world rustic charm. The main function room is 70ft (21.34 metres) by 23ft (7.05 metres) with an area of 1620 sq. ft (150 sq. m). The capacity is limited by fire regulations to 90 seated guests (not including top table).


Inside, it's more like being properly indoors than being in a barn. It's carpeted, warm and cosy with a friendly, mellow atmosphere. There are fairy lights, a bar, a dance floor, a kitchen, stage and dance floor lighting plus a high-quality sound system.


There is easy disabled access to the building and excellent indoor ladies, gents, and disabled toilets.


The building is heated and so is perfectly suited to a winter wedding.

The Lawn

The south-facing lawn is approximately three quarters of an acre in area and makes an ideal outside space for guests to mingle and chat.


The lawn has plenty of room for the erection of a marquee.

The Courtyard

An enclosed court yard (the old cow yard) lies next to the Old Milking Parlour and is an atmospheric and sheltered spot for barbecues and general chatting.

Music and Dancing


There is a disco-lit dance floor, stage lighting and a superb sound system. You can hire a band or a disco from our preferred suppliers list. Or you can use the venue's iPod disco. If you wish, you can use your own iPod, iPad or other device to construct your own musical entertainment.

The Grounds

Twelve acres of private grounds comprise the surroundings. These include paddocks, a stream and five acres of woods. Camping for guests is possible. A quiet campsite policy is in place.


The private car park is constructed in hard standing and has parking for fifty-six cars. More, if carefully parked.

The Bar

The bar measures 13ft (4 metres) by 13ft (4 metres) with an area of 146 sq. ft. (16 sq. m). Licensed bar suppliers are available from our preferred suppliers list.

Furniture and Layout

We have 120 of the chairs shown below. The chairs are wooden, in a light beech colour, have padded seats and are very comfortable. The chairs are called 'Calcutta High Back'. You may use these chairs at no extra charge and dccorate them as you wish. Of course, you may prefer to hire in your own choice of chairs - and that's fine too.

ompchairnakedlores omp chair 1lores omp chair seat omp chair 2 lores

We have 23 rectangular tables (size 6 ft by 2ft-6ins) which you may use to construct your own desired layout. But, of course, if you wish to hire in your own tables - that's fine.


The picture (left) shows a wedding reception layout for 72 seated guests and a 6 place top table.


The diagrams below show a couple of sample layouts which will accommodate 48,  72 or 108 guests, depending on the seating density. But, of course, you're free to choose any layout you wish.


As The Old Milking Parlour is a refurbished farm building, we are often asked: 'Do you have toilets?' The answer is that we have very high quality toilets within the building - Ladies' (pictured left), Gents' and Disabled. If your wedding is in the Winter, don't worry. The toilets are heated.

LadiesLoo Lawn Croquet Lizzie on Yard with Car Reception Crowd Square Chris at the Bar Car Park Room Ready
Catering Kitchen

Catering Kitchen

For the benefit of your caterers, there is a catering kitchen adjacent to the function room.

bride and groom ceremony

Civil Wedding Ceremonies

The Old Milking Parlour at Cavokay House is fully licensed by Somerset County Council to hold civil wedding ceremonies on the premises.


Ceremonies take place in The Old Milking Parlour building itself or outside on the court yard with the formalities taking place under the dovecote.


There is no extra charge from us for having your civil wedding ceremony at The Old Milking Parlour.


To begin arranging your civil wedding ceremony at The Old Milking Parlour at Cavokay House, click on this link:

Table Layout (12+Top) with Dimesnions Table Layout (18+Top) with Dimensions

Something Borrowed - Wedding and Photographic Props

We have loads of wedding and photographic props which are all included (without charge) in your wedding at The Old Milking Parlour - something borrowed, in fact.


These props include a beautiful phaeton horse-drawn carriage (no horse - sorry).


There are loads of milk churns which, when flowered-up, make a superb display and also make stunning rustic tables (great for arrival drinks on the lawn) when used with our selection of old plank doors.


Other props include dozens of candelabra, a post box, a cake swing,  many metres of flower garlands, chair covers, chair sashes, an indoor swing, an indoor flowered swinging hoop - which the bride can sit in for photographs - and loads of other imagination-inspiring stuff.

Phaeton Milk Churns on Trolley Matt and Amy in the Woods