The Wren Building is a historic structure which is still used for William & Mary classes, guided tours and various special events. There are no spaces suitable for use as dressing rooms, and there is no designated waiting room for the bride. We will find a place in the building for the bride and her attendants to wait. Our first choice is the Great Hall if it is not in use. While the Wren Building staff will ensure that the wedding ceremony is not disturbed, wedding parties should be aware that they will be sharing the building with members of the W&M community and visitors.
The staff of the Wren Building does not involve itself with matters of faith, ritual, taste or style. We do concern ourselves with matters that affect the safety and comfort of your guests and matters that bear on the welfare of the Wren Building. That said, please don't hesitate to contact us with questions about how things are usually done. Please refer to our Terms & Conditions (pdf) for more information.
The university does not provide a wedding coordinator for the Chapel. Questions and special concerns should be addressed to the building director. A member of the Wren Building staff will be available at the rehearsal and at the wedding to unlock doors, light candles and offer additional assistance.
Lighting & Electrical Service
The antique chandelier in the Chapel is electrified and equipped with a dimmer. There are also concealed lights (also with dimmers) in the window sills. The Chapel lighting was designed so that its color and intensity are appropriate for a historic interior. This means that on a cloudy day or during an evening wedding, the Chapel will be adequately illuminated, but not blazing with light. If you are concerned about light levels, please make an appointment with Kimberly to see the Chapel after dark. You might also consider scheduling your rehearsal at the same hour as your wedding, so you'll know what to expect the next day.
Electrical service in the Chapel is somewhat limited. Please contact Kimberly if you anticipate needing electrical outlets.
Climate Control and Doors
The chapel is air conditioned and heated for your comfort. It is also equipped with a sophisticated humidity-control system for the preservation of the antique organ. Because of the sensitivity of the organ to changes in temperature and relative humidity, we ask that you minimize the time the chapel door is open. Please encourage your ushers to help us keep the doors closed when they are not in use. Receiving lines and guest books tend to increase the amount of time the door is open, so please have them at your reception, not at the Chapel.
Since the bride and her escort are the last ones in the wedding party to enter the Chapel, we recommend that you have a friend or family member posted at the door to straighten the bride's veil and train, and to close the door behind her.
Food & Beverages
No food or beverages may be brought into the Wren Building or onto the grounds by members of the wedding party or wedding guests.
On the Grounds
Please give advance notice if any element of your wedding will involve use of the grounds around the Wren Building. This includes photography, a horse-drawn carriage, or musicians such as a fife and drum corps or a bagpiper.