4pm afternoon tea style sit down meal including sandwiches, cakes, scones and then im thinking a couple of cheese and pate boards to bulk it out or maybe something else savoury e.g mini tartlets/quiches on each table with a couple more glasses of champagne (or tea if they want!!)
then the evening will start at 7/7.30pm and an evening buffet will come out (more substantial/hot food etc) around 8-9pm
This is exactly what we're doing. Afternoon tea at 4pm, bbq at 8pm. We're not having canapes so we're a bit concerned about people being hungry. We haven't yet decided if we're doing canapes yet.
Its not cheaper though. In fact its £30 per head.
That is a lot cheaper than a sit down 3 course meal!!!! We are having a basic 3 course wedding breakfast, and it's working out at just under £100 per person! Nothing fancy, no cheese course... We're getting married in winter so afternoon tea wouldn't really work, but from researching it does work out significantly cheaper if you can do it :-)
plus, there's scope to personalise it a bit more, and make it exactly what you want!