Name of business: Dovecote Events
Name of Directors: Louise Hodge
What year did you launch your business? 2013
Where is your business located? Bo Peep Farm, Adderbury, Banbury, Oxfordshire, OX17 3NP
Describe your business in two sentences…
Dovecote Events is a creative events company based in Oxfordshire, offering services including marquee and tipi hire, bespoke catering and event management and is also home to Dovecote Barn, an exclusive countryside wedding venue. With a small but experienced team of professionals, Dovecote Events can cater for unique and specialised events, delivering a quality and personalised service from initial enquiry through to the end of the event.
Who are your target customers?
Dovecote Events target customers who are looking to hold quality events, from weddings and special occasions to corporate entertaining and festivals.
What services and facilities for outdoor events do you offer?
Outdoor events can either be hosted on our extensive site in rural Adderbury, using either our marquees, tipi or rustic barn, or Dovecote Events can bring the services to your doorstep including offsite marquee hire, bespoke catering and event management services.
How would you describe your style?
Being a small and family run business, Dovecote Events prides itself on providing a tailor-made service to all its customers, from initial consultation, and working closely with the client through the event planning process right through to the event day itself where the event manager ensures the event runs seamlessly from start to finish.
Why did you decide to add tipis as an additional offering?
Tipis have recently become a very popular choice by most young couples looking to hold something a little different to the usual indoor venue. With the land we have available at Bo Peep Farm, a tipi seemed like the ideal outdoor structure, fitting in perfectly amongst the beautiful rural vistas. A tipi can also add a new dimension to a business, creating a wider variation on the services and style of event on offer, exposing the business to a wider market of potential clients.
Why did you choose tipis from The Tipi Company?
After visiting the Showman Show in 2015 we found the team at The Tipi Company extremely knowledgeable and found they had a good reputation within the industry. What excited us most was their keenness for expansion and creativity, constantly adapting to the market and experimenting with new techniques, materials and products.
What tipi configuration did you invest in and why?
We opted for two Big Hats and one Baby Tipi initially, later adding a catering tent to match. The configuration suited the site we had chosen to erect the formation on and seemed suited to the demand for events in terms of size and space – we seat up to 100 people in there so it covers a variety of events.
You invested in our Weatherproofing Kit – have you found this useful for your offering and why?
Yes. Our tipi has now been so popular at Bo Peep Farm that it has stayed up for longer than just the summer. With the Weatherproofing Kit, we can ensure that the tipi is more durable and withstands conditions throughout the year, and not just the summer.
What are the future plans for your events venue?
We hope to build on the success of our first year of owning a tipi and grow Dovecote Events to be a recognised and respected business within the events industry. We have big plans and hope to see the business grow year after year.
What advice would you give to those who are thinking about adding tipis to their current offering?
Tipis are a great tool for growing your current market. They bring diversity to any venue or hire company. I would ensure you have a good team who can maintain the products and who are confident in building structures like this, or at least a team who are ready and willing to learn some new building techniques.
*The Tipi Company offers a 1-2-1 Training Programme so that your team can be fully trained on the safe build and maintenance of your investment. In addition to this, there is the Online Training Portal which is full of informative How-to videos, pictures and diagrams that you can access via an iPad while you are out in the field.