There are two main options when it comes to choosing the ceremony right for you. This can be in the form of a religious ceremony where you commit to each other in front of a God or a non-religious civil ceremony.
A civil ceremony lasts between 20 – 40 minutes and is conducted by a legal official, unlike a Church ceremony it is legal binding so no need to take a trip to the Registry Office to declare your marriage after the big day! Civil ceremonies usually take place in a Registry Office, however many couples do prefer to have their ceremony at the venue to coincide with the logistics of the day. It is usually a lot easier for guests and can be more relaxing for the Bride and Groom. The ceremony itself includes the exchanging of rings, vows and any reading you would like. Unlike a Church ceremony, you can walk down the aisle to your favourite pop song without feeling out of place. I’ve even witnessed a Bride making her entrance to Duran Duran – Girls on Film! The Registrars make you feel right at home and aren’t shy of a good joke or two. I’ll never forget my favourite line from a rainy wedding ceremony:
“A wet knot is harder to untie”
Just like Joey in ‘Friends’ who marries his friends Monica and Chandler, why don’t you ask a close friend to officiate the ceremony? You can get ordained online – it’s too easy to not!
A Church ceremony usually lasts between 1 hour and a half. Churches make for beautiful backdrops and can easily be dressed up with pew ribbons and flowers. I believe it is easier to secure a wedding ceremony at your local Church which may influence your choice of venue to avoid long traveling times. Some of the most exclusive venues do have Chapels in their grounds for blessings. To name one, Rudding Park in Follifoot near Harrogate is home to a stunning Chapel and is set in the grounds of the hotel itself.
I have witnessed many ceremonies in my time as a Wedding Coordinator. The most unusual was a humanist ceremony in which the couple had already been married for a number of weeks prior to their official wedding date… and unbeknown to their close family and friends! The reason was purely because their preferred ceremony time for their wedding date was unavailable with their local Registry Office. A humanist ceremony is not legally binding and is classed as a celebratory ceremony of the marriage rather than a religious one. Humanist ceremonies can even be held outside, if like me, you would love to get married outdoors!