We didn't quite expect a summer like this one with wedding venues and religious buildings firmly shut to all ceremonies, and postponements being normal for most of 2020. And as we gradually move out of unprecedented times, a glimmer of hope for weddings and other celebrations, is on the horizon. So when we can expect the traditional summer wedding to resume, and if it is to be held during 2020, what will a wedding in a post covid environment look like? Here's what we know. Not entirely as you dreamed it would be, but it's possible, just.
Image: Rembo Styling at Parham House Brides.
The Prime Minister, announced on the 23rd June, that as part of easing the lockdown, and from 4th July 2020, a marriage ceremony may be conducted in a place of worship, for no more than 30 people with social distancing in place, and this has since been extended to receptions from 1st August 2020 which is good news for couples who have a small guest list. However the guidance varies in different parts of the UK so we suggest you check with the local register office for a civil ceremony, or an officiant if the marriage is to take place in a religious buildng, in the region where this will take place. Your chosen venue will also advise on their own procedures as these become clear.
Large wedding receptions are not permitted for now.
Civil Ceremonies in the UK
All civil ceremonies, weddings and partnerships that are normally booked through the Registration Service in England and Wales, are currently on hold and couples are unable to book a date or give notice of marriage until the situation changes. Our venues advise that where the date is imminent, couples are being contacted to discuss if they wish the ceremony to go ahead. We recommend you to check these pages for updates on booking a civil ceremony or giving notice. https://www.gov.uk/marriages-civil-partnerships. and //www.gov.uk/marriages-civil-partnerships/give-notice
The Official Advice on Weddings in the UK
Here is the UK Government's advice for holding a wedding ceremony in a post covid environment.
The Church of England is allowing ceremonies for 5 people including the couple, two witnesses and the officiant. The Church are updating this and futher guidance will be published shortly. We strongly recommend checking the following links for further information. https://www.churchofengland.org/more/media-centre/news/church-updates-guidance-weddings-and-baptisms-light-coronavirus
At present the exceptions for wedding ceremonies are in Northern Ireland, where small weddings may be conducted outside for a maximum of ten people, including the bride and groom. And in exceptional circumstances, a wedding will be allowed where one partner is terminally ill in NI and other areas of the UK. From the 29th June 2020 the restrictions will allow up to 50 people indoors at the venue, to include the staff in Ireland.
Please note that the guidance on weddings is currently being discussed for Scotland but here is some useful information from The Church of Scotland.https://www.churchofscotland.org.uk/resources/covid-19-coronavirus-advice/advice-for-churches-covid-19-coronavirus
The Wedding Rules Post Covid.
It is highly likely that when the rules on lockdown are relaxed further, that the number of guests allowed for the rest of 2020 will be fewer than is considered normal, giving couples plenty to think about on their guest list alone, especially where family members and friends are vulnerable. Here's what you need to know. If this guidance is unpalatable, and we feel it might be, the only solution is to postpone the happy day until the situation changes. A wedding is a joyous occasion and one that the couple, their family and friends will want to remember for all the right reasons.
Finding Information and Planning Tools.
For couples who have postponed their dates until later this year or for 2021 and had already booked suppliers, there is much to re-organise, but we advise you to do this quickly. Luckily most couples have been pleased with their suppliers and are not cancelling their wedding plans. Couples who have yet to set a date, need to move fast as there will be an unprecedented demand for good services around the UK. Typically wedding fayres and exhibitions are a great source of information, and where these are taking place locally with new distancing guidelines in place, they might be worth a visit. One of the south west's longest serving show organisers, Love Actually Wedding Fayres have announced dates for autumn 2020 https://www.loveactuallyweddings.co.uk/
Bentley Mark VI by RR Elite Cars.
Bridal Retailers and Wedding Services.
From 15th June 2020, brides will be able to make appointments for UK bridal shops which are are now allowed to open with social distancing guidelines in place. Here at Wedding Whispers, we are updating the revised service policy for bridal shops and other wedding services including wedding car hire and florists, in fave wedding suppliers
Image: Courtesy of Dartmouth Weddings.
We invite you to browse our website. Happy wedding planning and stay safe!