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Marriage Ceremonies - The Options!

Marriage Ceremonies - The Options!

In England and Wales there are two main forms of marriage ceremony, a religious/faith service and a civil ceremony or partnership which can either take place in the Register Office or a venue approved for conducting Civil Ceremonies. Since 1995 the popular choice of using a wedding venue for the marriage ceremony has overtaken those in a Church or Religious building. It is now estimated that 2/3rds of all marriages in England and Wales are civil, most likely due to the many options and beautiful locations to hold both the ceremony, wedding party and a place to crash afterwards! A civil ceremony/partnership can be conducted only in an approved venue and one that meets with the requirements of the local Registrar where no religous content or references are permitted. From 29th March 2014 same-sex weddings can now be conducted in England and Wales, but check local conditions as these will vary according to faith e.g. The Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, the Muslim Council of Great Britain and The Network of Sikh Organisations have apposed plans to allow gay marriage.

An unusual and lesser know option is that of using the services of an Independent Civil Celebrant who can offer the option of choosing your own readings and vows and have a ceremony in a place of your choosing, in front of family and friends, even on a beach at sunset. These services are arranged at a time after the legal formalities of marriage have been conducted in front of a Registrar at a Register Office and which could be the same day or some time after. For some sound advice and information, have a look at south-west based Sarah Chapman, Independent Civil Celebrant, for some ideas at www.celebrationceremoniessouthwest.com

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