Asylum Chapel Wedding Photography

Weddings at Asylum & Maverick Projects

One of my favourite venues in the whoooole of London, is the Asylum Chapel in Peckham. A unique gem of a wedding venue, and one that’s been featured in countless commercials and editorials. A deconsecrated Chapel just off the Old Kent Road, with its crumbling blue walls and stained glass windows, it’s a pretty unique place to get married. If you’re looking for Asylum Chapel wedding photography, then here’s lots of lovely info for you.

Alternative wedding photography london

The History of the Asylum Chapel

The site at Caroline Gardens is surrounded by Almhouses, originally built to house retired pub landlords (which I guess is one of the reasons it makes perfect sense as a location for celebration now!), in around 1827. Asylum was used to mean a place of sanctuary as opposed to its alternative meaning as a psychiatric facility. When it was built, North Peckham would have been mainly rural (the surrounding buildings which are mostly late Victorian sprung up as the London suburbs grew) which feels hard to imagine today. The buildings are still used as social housing.

During WWII the Chapel was bombed, and it wasn’t until afterwards that the building was stablised, and the roof you see today added. It was in 2010 that the space was brought back to life as an arts venue – intended for exhibitions, shoots and the like and since that time it’s grown to become one of South East London’s most iconic wedding venues.

Wedding ceremonies at Asylum Chapel

The Chapel is licensed for ceremonies to be performed by Southwark Registrars – you can contact them via their website.

Alternatively, it’s a great space for an alternative wedding ceremony – either performed by a celebrant or maybe a friend – I’ve seen some wonderful, bespoke ceremonies there over the years, including Kaia & John’s which was performed in the round. It may also be possible to host a religious blessing in the space, although that would not be legally binding.

Where to go after your Asylum wedding

Asylum no longer hosts full wedding receptions – this is to minimise disruption to those residents who live in the almhouses, and is instead a kind of ceremony and a drink kind of place (but what a place).

Asylum has pretty good access, and I’ve photographed weddings that have gone onto venues in East London like Shoreditch Studios or other locations. However, if you want to keep it local, there are loads of other great spots in South East London – in fact I’ve pulled together a blog post about some of London’s best Pub wedding venues which might give you a good start – pubs like The Lordship in East Dulwich are super popular post-Asylum spots. They also now run their own warehouse style wedding venue in a railway arch just off the Old Kent Road – AMP studios, which I have yet to visit, but looks pretty cool.

How I photograph Asylum weddings

I’ll take this opportunity to say that every wedding is different, and my approach is always bespoke, but I think when you’re photographing a wedding at a venue like Asylum, you want to convey the beauty of the place – you’ve chosen it to get married precisely because it’s not a typical wedding venue. You want the crumbling blue walls, the inscriptions, the candles, your flowers, the dramatic light that streams in through the window.

I’d suggest that after the ceremony, we get all of your guests onto the front steps ready to throw some confetti , and then after that, if you want one, it’s a great location to get a photo of all of your guests, since they’re mostly already on the steps.

Deepending on the time of year, you can do a handful of group photos either on the steps or inside, if it’s winter or wet.

And then, once you start to move your guests on, we can seize the last 10-15 minutes of the booking for some awesome photos of just the two of you in the space.


Some favourite images from Asylum weddings



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