Today the Law Commission published their proposals for reforms to the law governing weddings.
Many of the current laws date back to 1800's and are no longer relevant to the way we live our lives now
In their Consultation Paper, they suggest a
comprehensive new legislative scheme to replace
the outdated, overly restrictive current law of
"Individuals will be able to give notice of their intended wedding remotely, and choose the registration district where they attend to complete the preliminaries.
All weddings will be legally permitted to take place in a location chosen by the couple. Couples will be able to marry outdoors and in their own homes.
There will be no prescribed words, giving couples greater freedom as to the form their wedding takes, enabling the law to recognise the variety of ceremonies that people use to mark their weddings, including religious ceremonies.
So long as it is still identifiable as a civil ceremony, couples will be able to have religious songs, readings and hymns as part of their civil weddings."
Something that has been overdue for a while I feel.
What do you think ?
My final tip to all couples is be organised and aim to have all decisions made at least a week before your big day.
Ask family and friends to be responsible for aspects of the planning so that you do not have to do everything.
On the day - relax and enjoy it !
Just as all couples are different so are all celebrants. It is worthwhile contacting more than one to see who you feel shares your vision for your day.
It is a matter of personal choice how many different suppliers you engage to make your day special. You may wish to use the services of others or ask family and friends to each made a specific contribution. Inviting people to bring their own picnic is a great way to ensure that everyone stays safe. Also getting friends and family involved can help to share the load, and the excitement, in the build up to your ceremony.
As a legal marriage ceremony can only take place on licensed premises couples wishing to have a Wedding ceremony at home should can book a statutory ceremony (often referred to as a “two plus two”) at their local Registry office.
For your wedding day use a Celebrant to create and conduct your ceremony.
Alternatively you may wish to have a Commitment ceremony. A Commitment ceremony is as the name suggests an opportunity to express your commitment to each other but has no legal foundation.
Set your budget and try to stick to it !
Setting your budget at the start of the planning process is a good idea because it will help you decide on your priorities. Think about what you need to purchase and what could be hired or borrowed. Try to only purchase big items if they can be of use after the wedding.
Hiring items or asking friends of family to loan you things can be a good option.
Choose your theme.
Deciding on a theme will help with the decisions you will need to make further along the line and it is worth spending some time thinking about this.
Think of what truly represents you as a couple what you love and what you share.
Should it be romantic ?
Would you prefer something whimsical ?
Are you looking for something simple and naturalistic?
It makes no difference. If you wish you can incorporate the blending of your families in your ceremony.
“Home is where the heart is” this well known saying holds a great deal of truth. This has been even more appropriate over the last few months with many of us spending far more time at home than we would usually do.
As an Independent Celebrant I conduct non-statutory ceremonies. If you are considering a ceremony at home (or any other venue) choosing a Celebrant led ceremony gives you the freedom to create a ceremony which reflects you as a couple.
If you have completed the legal declarations then you might wish to have a Wedding ceremony. If you have yet to complete the legal declarations then you could have a Commitment ceremony.
It is important to follow the current COVID-19 guidance to ensure that everyone stays safe. As guidance changes on a regular basis it is best to check the changes on a regular basis too.
Here are my top tips for creating the perfect venue.
Before you start ask yourselves these questions
Where do we want our ceremony to take place? Most couples opt for an outdoor space but remember to have somewhere inside just in case the weather isn’t kind. Marquees or barns may provide the solution.
How many guests can we accommodate ? This will not only depend on the amount of space you have available but also on the current guidance for gatherings
In my next few blogs I will be sharing some on my top tips.
I was pleased to hear that the outcome of the High Court Action by Humanists UK has had the best outcome at this time for everyone, including the six couples who bought the action.
I feel strongly that couples, who choose to marry, should be given the freedom of choice to celebrate their marriage in a way that they feel is both significant and reflective of them. They should also be able to select from a range of ways in which their ceremony is delivered and by whom, including Church, Registrar, Humanists and Independent Celebrants.
The decision to refer the judgement offers a possibility that this issue is being seriously considered.
I will await with interest the final judgement.
How do you feel about this ?
No, the legal aspect of your marriage must be done first at a registry office. You can choose a "two plus two" ceremony which takes place in an office and takes approximately ten minutes. This fulfils all legal requirements.
Choosing a Celebrant to help you create that special ceremony is an important step towards making your occasion a really memorable one. Why not take advantage of the free initial meeting I offer ? I believe it is important to meet informally to discuss your ideas and what I can offer. Meeting also gives us an opportunity to explore the type of ceremony that would best suit your needs.