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Couple Ceremony FAQs

It’s a ceremony, which you design, with our help, conducted in front of all your family and friends who can witness you making promises of love and commitment to each other, and exchanging or re-dedicating your rings. You can have readings, prayers and blessings if you wish and even symbolic gestures – and it’s all topped off by signing a commemorative certificate.
This ceremony does not replace your legal formalities, but it is designed to be a perfect solution to some of the dilemmas couples can face when getting married.

Absolutely anywhere of your choosing! Anywhere from a marquee in the garden, a hotel, a village hall, a restaurant, a castle or even a boat, the choice is yours.

We recommend that if you are thinking of having your ceremony outside, you need to plan for shelter if the weather conditions are bad. Also bear in mind locations like pubs or beaches are open to the public and can therefore be rather disruptive and noisy. Please note that we are not involved in organising ceremony venues – they will have their own charges for room hire, catering etc.

Yes you can hold your ceremony at home, your celebrant will visit you first to ensure that your home meets the required Health & Safety standards.

Look at Guidelines for Ceremonies at Home which will give you an idea of the things to consider.

Any day at any time! Most of our ceremonies are conducted on either Saturdays or Sundays but they can be held on any day of the week, the ceremony fee is the same.

Most ceremonies happen on the same as the legal formalities of marriage, or soon afterwards. Any time of day is available and evenings are popular for guests attending an evening reception.

If the time lapse between your legal wedding and your celebration is more than a year then we would recommend a Renewal of Vows might be more appropriate.

Broadly speaking yes, however, we are unable to say or do anything which may mislead the guests into thinking that the Wedding Celebration Ceremony is in any way part of a legal formality of marriage, because these ceremonies do not have legal status.

Consequently, we are not able to use the statutory declarations from either a religious or civil marriage. However, we are able to use a similar format when making promises and exchanging rings, as well as having access to an extensive range of symbolic actions, which add very special and personal meaning to the ceremony.

When you receive your Bespoke Ceremony pack from us, do consider all the options and choices carefully and include your own additional words if you wish. Our Bespoke Ceremony Specialist Team will ensure your ceremony is exactly as you wish.

Yes, some couples do include religious references and this is no problem, although if you require a fully religious ceremony, we would suggest that you contact your church or religious community.

This is your choice:

Delivered by a Celebrant – one of our fully trained professional Celebrants can carry out the ceremony for you according to the choices you make. They will meet with you beforehand to discuss the ceremony content and arrangements.

‘Script Only’ option – you may prefer to arrange for someone you know to conduct the ceremony for you. If this is something that you prefer, you can purchase your Script from us directly by phone or by visiting the script only page.

Yes, you would meet the Celebrant beforehand. All of our Celebrants are trained professionals. If you are having your ceremony at home your Celebrant is required to visit you there to comply with Health and Safety requirements. If you are having the ceremony at a venue they will meet you there to discuss things like room layout and any special requirements. The only exception to this is if the ceremony were to be arranged at very short notice or if the Celebrant lives a huge distance from the ceremony. This will be discussed at the time of booking.

Your Celebrant’s primary goal is to ensure that your ceremony runs smoothly and that you have a truly memorable day.

We do not offer Wedding Celebration Ceremonies to couples that are not married. Commitment Ceremonies can be performed for those who are not married but wish to pledge themselves to a lasting relationship. If you would like to discuss which of these ceremonies would suit you best, do call us to talk through the available options.

We do need all of the paperwork back in our office 6 weeks before the ceremony takes place to allow us enough time to script it. If you are wishing to book a Celebrant for your ceremony we do really need to know your chosen date as early as possible, in order to check availability.

The wording required by law in a marriage ceremony is the only element that cannot be used in a Wedding Celebration Ceremony. Therefore, apart from the note below, there’s nothing that has to be said and done. You choose what to say and do, from the beginning right through to the end. The ceremony can incorporate elements from any religion or culture if you wish.

The main elements of a Wedding Celebration are:

Introduction / Opening Words

First Reading

Promises/Vows of Commitment

Blessing/Giving/Rededication of Rings

Further Reading

Closing Words

Signing a commemorative certificate

There are additional optional elements such as prayers, symbolic actions (e.g. joining of hands, lighting a candle) and new step-parent’s promises. The ceremony usually lasts between 20 and 40 minutes, but does depend largely on content chosen.

Note: Just so that your guests aren’t confused or misled in any way, all Wedding Celebration Ceremonies include a reference to where and when you carried out the legal formalities of your marriage.

Design of the Ceremony

We will provide you with two guides. Part one takes you through all the decisions you need to make about the ceremony and suggests ways in which you can make it meaningful and totally personal to you as a couple. Part two contains a huge selection of phrases and paragraphs, which you could incorporate into your ceremony. You simply make your choices, or you can use our suggestions as inspiration to write your own words. In addition, we provide an extensive selection of poetry and readings for you to choose from.

Yes! Once your ceremony is scripted we will send you a copy of it by email for you to check. Once you are happy with the script we will then send you a hard copy in the post along with your Order of Ceremony. This is useful to print for your guests to enable them to follow the ceremony. Your script will also be forwarded to your Celebrant.

Yes, the wording of your Certificate will be sent to you at the same time as the script. Once checked it will then be posted to the celebrant to bring with them on the day.

Any other questions?

If you cannot find the answer you are looking for then please do not hesitate to contact us on 01480 276080 or email us at info@civilceremonies.co.uk

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