Sophie starts by giving us some background information on the company before we quiz her....
My father Nic Mines started Mines Leisure Hire nearly 40 years ago. He started very small with a couple of marquees, some cutlery and crockery and continually grew it, into a very successful marquee hire company. Three years ago he decided to downsize the company as he became ill. He sold a lot of his wide span marquees and decided to invest in pagodas (Chinese hat style roof’s) in silver and white instead. I became involved in the accounting side of the business on my two days off from my part time job, with the intention of taking on the role permanently when our part time accounting lady retired at the end of 2017.
Dad then sadly became seriously ill and was forced to retire. It was at that point that I made a life changing decision to step into the Managing Director’s (very large) shoes! Sadly I lost my dad Christmas Eve 2017, and from that moment onward's, the weight was truly on my shoulder to take over the running of the business - which I gladly took on. I cannot think of any better tribute to my dad than to keep the family name going.
My vision for the company is to grow it again. Sadly as we'd sold all our large marquees, wedding’s haven’t been possible until now. This year I have however invested in two large 10m x 10m white pagodas which create a space for up to 200 people at a wedding. I like to think we are a bit different from the other existing companies out there, with our peaked roofs!
We pride ourselves on excellent customer service – nothing is ever to much trouble where our customers are concerned.
What is your greatest fear when you are working on a wedding?
The greatest fear when working on a wedding is obviously ensuring the bride and groom are happy with the job you are doing!
What is your greatest extravagance that helps you get through the day?
I am not a very extravagant person. I suppose my treat that gets me through the day is a Costa Coffee in the morning and a bit of chocolate!!!
What has been your favourite wedding to be involved in?
The best wedding I ever went to was my sisters (after my own!), she had a beautiful wide span marquee which obviously my father did and everything was perfect and beautiful – the flowers , the chairs, the twinkly roof above the dance floor, the band, the food, everything was perfect!
Where is your favourite setting for a Mines Leisure Hire Marquee?
Euridge Manor possibly. Somewhere with outdoor space of course!
When was the last time you laughed out loud at a wedding? What happened?
The last time I laughed out loud at a wedding was last year at the groom’s speech! I'm afraid it's not one i can share on here!!
What is the one thing you can’t live without in your job?
The one thing I can’t live without in my job is a telephone, as we wouldn’t be able to contact our customers or they couldn’t contact us!
What moment are you most proud of in your profession?
The moment I’m most proud of is when we received a thank you card from a customer recently saying how wonderful my team were, from the girls on the desk to the guys that put up their pagoda for their sons christening.
Where do you draw inspiration from for your work?
I draw a lot of my ideas from trade shows or magazines and most importantly my mum, as I feel she has lovely taste and great ideas! It really is a family business!
What question do you wish every couple would ask you when you are meeting with them for the first time?
It’s nice when they ask for your personal opinion, it means they trust you!
What would people be surprised to learn about you and/or your work?
I guess customers may be surprised to learn (or may be not) that if we don’t have an item in stock rather than say ‘no’ to them then we would buy that item in rather than let a customer down…but I don’t think that is unusual?
Hiring a marquee or pagoda for your wedding is a wonderful idea. They are a blank canvas which means that you can add your own decorations to reflect your personal style and taste. In effect, a well decorated marquee is THE “pop up” wedding venue.
So... if your searching for something beautiful and unique that is a little different to the traditional clear-span marquees then Mines Leisure Hire pagodas may be just the ticket for you. They quite simply look amazing and have the 'wow' factor for you and your guests. Don't be put off if you're hoping for an out of season wedding either, as they have heating to suit all seasons!
For further information and more stunning images to swoon over, head over to their Directory Page HERE. Alternatively, feel free to pop over to their showroom in Wiltshire to see the different options and meet the team!