Our Blog

Group Stays Blog, stay up to date with the latest news and offers


I 'propose' we redress the balance this Leap Year!

That time has come once more when we all get an extra day in February. Some people will be linking this to the year of the Olympics, and some lucky people born on the 29th February 20 years ago will be celebrating their 5th Birthday. Others, mainly women, will be thinking about the possibility of turning the tables on tradition and asking their partners to marry them!

Where did the tradition come from?

In the same way that the extra day in a Leap Year balances the calendar it is thought that the concept behind women proposing on the 29th February was in some part to do with balancing out the typically traditional view that men should be the one to ask women to marry them. Apparently St Brigid was the feisty lady who took the bull by the horns, so to speak, and negotiated a day to reverse these roles. Well done her I say!

Historically, the first documented instance of a women proposing is in 13th century Scotland where a law passed that decreed any man refusing a proposal on the Leap Year must pay a fine. Brilliant idea – the most common fine was a pair of gloves, I suppose to cover the bare hand of the rebuffed girl in question.

In modern times though, gloves unfortunately are not deemed a part of daily wear and so this tradition has died out leaving behind it a legacy of traditional anticipation and possibly a little expectation by some men!

Is 2016 THE year for you? 

Will this option be on the cards for many relationships this year? I’m really not sure to be honest. It would probably take a lot of guts and a certain expectation that the person being questioned will say yes. Conversations around marriage and the future will probably have taken place unless it is to be a complete surprise. Relationships that have shirked tradition in the past may have the perfect foundation for a Leap Year proposal. Or you may just think that the lucky person in question may just love the non-conventional approach. Some men love strong women so why not take matters into your own hands, it would be a great story for the grandchildren!

So, you have made the decision to go for it but what about the actual proposal itself…..

Public or Private?

Serious or comical?

Morning or evening?

Ring or no ring?

  • Do you get up early and write the words WILL YOU MARRY ME into the sand (above the high tide line just in case)?
  • Do you hire a plane to trail it behind while the person in question is waiting for their bus to work?
  • Do you send it on a postcard to arrive that morning?
  • Do you spell it out with alphabet spaghetti on toast for breakfast?

Seriously, the choice is yours! Today is your day, grab it with both hands!

So let’s imagine that you have popped the question and the answer is yes (if it is no, then I’m really sorry and I am sure you’ll work things out….) what happens next?

You turn to Group Stays and look at our amazing wedding venues of course!

With a range stunning properties to choose from around the UK, here is my breakdown of the best. Please do contact the owners if you would like more information, they are old hands at this and are waiting for your call.

Tynrhyd – Mid Wales

You proposed in a non traditional way so why not go for a non traditional wedding at Tynrhyd? With a ‘Full Steam Ahead’ package you can arrive in style on either a steam train or diesel train seating between 100-250 passengers!

Tynrhyd has been newly licenced for Civil Marriage and Civil Partnership Ceremonies  and this is a high quality, dream venue. You have exclusive use so it is fantastic for a private celebration. An on site honeymoon suite and even your very own professional wedding planner nothing is too much trouble.

Click on the photo of a Tynrhyd wedding to watch their very own wedding video to find out more.

Wringworthy Cottages - Cornwall

If it is a countryside wedding venue you are after with the possibility of spending a few days by the Cornish coast then look no further than Wringworthy Cottages. Set in splendid grounds with a heated outdoor swimming pool there is fun for all the family at this beautiful location. Just have a read of the amazing feedback from previous people getting married here, click on the picture of Wringworthy for contact details:

We stayed here last year on holiday and were taken by the beauty and tranquillity of the place. We were instantly struck with its potential and decided it had everything we wanted for our dream wedding. Kim and Mike were beyond awesome by helping and giving us advice for our big day but at the same time were not too forward or pushy so that it still felt like it was our day. 

We had a large marquee put up in the grounds and used the picnic benches on site for our guests to sit on. We tried to use local businesses and found them to be excellent. We had beer and cider delivered the day. Mike and Kim were most helpful in taking in the deliveries for us.

We hired the whole site & had exclusive use of the party barn too. The cottages were lovely, they are all well-equipped, spotlessly clean and warm. The owners, Kim & Michael are really helpful & friendly. They have a long list of contacts in the area to help with organising an event & they are on hand to help or happy to leave you to your own devices if you wish.

Balinakill Country House - Scotland

Last but not least why not start your married life as Lord and Lady of the house in this absolutely gorgeous venue in the Kintyre Peninsula in Argyll. Ann and her team are experts in hosting weddings and have even been featured on the 100 Best Wedding Venues in Scotland list – what a great accolade. You can really see why.

Licenced to hold Civil ceremonies you and your party get exclusive use of the house and gardens for you stay. You could even get married in Clachan Church nearby. Offering a wedding management service you can be assured that you will be able to plan your dream wedding and start your married life in bliss. One huge selling point of this venue is the ‘Stock your own bar’ no corkage to pay (up to 30 guests) and I bet one of your friends will be only too pleased to step up to the role of publican for the night.

Click on the image below to contact the owner of Balinakill Country House.

Well that just about sums up this blog post. Please do let us know if you pluck up the courage to ask the person of your dreams the BIG QUESTION. Who knows we may have a Group Stays wedding to blog about very soon. Right, I’m off to buy a hat……