Planning your wedding?

Andrew is often asked by clients about access to private or public locations for photographs, whether it’s a family shoot or a wedding party. Often our clients are surprised to find that the rights to photo locations are not automatic. Forward planning is the key to access to your chosen location. Don’t be disappointed on the day – make sure you have arranged for permission in advance. Be aware than many places such as the Botanic Gardens charge a fee for photoshoots. This fee is usually waived if you are having your ceremony or reception at the location.

Photography rights at your wedding ceremony or reception venue.

Wedding venue hire usually includes the rights to have your wedding photography on site. It’s worth checking with your church or registry office if there are any other weddings on that day. You might have a limited time for photographs before and after the ceremony.

If you hire a large reception venue with multiple function suites, do check with them which areas you are allowed access to. Some areas might be restricted to other wedding parties.

Photography rights at your pre-wedding hotel.

If you are staying in a different hotel the night before your wedding, check before you book that you will be able to have photographs taken of you leaving the venue. If the hotel hosts weddings, they will give priority to the wedding taking place in their venue. They may ask you to stay away from certain areas to avoid confusion, and may not allow you to take any photographs at all outside of your room. If you’re not having photographs taken until you arrive at your own wedding venue then this is not a problem!

Photography and access to council parks and gardens.

It’s a common belief that everyone has the right to take photographs in publicly-owned parks, and while this is true if you’re taking snaps yourself, the same doesn’t apply for a professional photoshoot.  The council require professional photographers to have public liability insurance, and there is an admin charge to cover paperwork for shoots over 4 hours.

Vehicle access to some areas such as Calton Hill can be arranged in advance – contact the City of Edinburgh Council to arrange.

Photography at The Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh

“The Botanics” is a wedding venue in its own right. They will allow wedding photography if you’re getting married elsewhere, but this has to be booked in advance and is limited to a maximum of 20 people. Wedding photo shoots are supervised by a member of staff. The fee at time of writing is £120 for this service, but do check the Botanic Gardens own website for up-to-date information. This fee is waived if you are having your ceremony or reception on site.

For other photoshoots, such as family or engagement  shoots,  staff supervisiion is required and needs to be arranged at least two weeks in advance. There is also a fee payable for this service.

Photoshoots at Edinburgh Castle and Historic Buildings

To arrange for a wedding or family photoshoot at Edinburgh Castle, contact the Communications Team for their latest prices and conditions. You can find their details if you scroll down their contact page.

Similar conditions apply to Historic Scotland and National Trust for Scotland venues – contact them individually for permission.

Don’t believe anyone who tells you that you can just turn up on the day! Always call in advance, then you won’t miss out.


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