Congratulations. We are always delighted to be approached by couples wanting to hold their wedding in one of our four beautiful churches and will do everything we can to help you do that.
Why marry in church?
A church is so much more than simply a beautiful venue for your wedding. A church wedding adds a spiritual dimension to your marriage. The ceremony includes God and looks to him for help and guidance. God’s blessing is the main attraction for many couples, whatever their beliefs, and your vicar will try and help you think through what it means to enter into a Christian marriage.
And after your wedding – the church family will always be there for you.
Which Church can I be married in?
There are some legalities about which church someone can marry in – but the good news is that they have been made much simpler in recent years.
You can now marry in a Church of England church if you can show that one of you:
- has at any time lived in the parish for a period of at least 6 months, or
- was baptised (christened) in the parish concerned, or
- is confirmed and your confirmation was entered in the register of confirmations for a church or chapel in the parish (this will usually be the case if you were prepared for confirmation in the parish), or
- has at any time regularly gone to normal church services in the parish church for a period of at least 6 months
That one of your parents, at any time after you were born:
- has lived in the parish for a period of at least 6 months, or
- has regularly gone to normal church services in the parish church for a period of at least 6 months
That one of your parents or grandparents:
- was married in the parish
And did you know that if you move house, you’re immediately connected to the church there? That means you can marry in the church of your new parish.
If you cannot demonstrate any of the above connections, you could create one, simply by attending your chosen church’s usual services at least once a month for six consecutive months. If you decide to do this, leave enough time after your attendance for the banns to be read before your wedding too – about another two months should be enough.
Talk to the Vicar there well in advance to discuss the options open to you.
If you’re marrying in a special church that’s not where you live, your local church would still love to support you as you prepare for the wedding, and afterwards too.
Legal requirements in order to be married in church
There are certain things that must happen in a church wedding to ensure the marriage complies with both UK civil and church law. In marriage you take on a whole new legal status. The rector knows how to advise and prepare you for your wedding day and everything must comply with all relevant UK and Church of England laws.
These are the main legal points to consider before you begin planning:
You must be old enough
If you are under 18 years old you will need your parents’ consent to marry and by law you cannot be married in the UK until you are 16.
Changes to same-sex marriage legislation
Although same sex-marriage legislation is now in force, it remains the case that it is not legally possible for same-sex couples to marry in the Church of England.
Marrying away from where you live
It’s possible to get married in a church that’s away from where you live if you have a certain kind of connection with it. You may be legally connected to a number of churches in different ways. (See above)
Time of wedding
The wedding must take place between 8am and 6pm on any day.
Guidelines for divorcees
There are special guidelines on marriage in the church if you are divorced. There may well be a way forward, but you will need to talk to the Vicar about your situation to explore the possibilities for you.
Reading of Banns
In order to be married in a church, you will normally have to have your Banns read. You will need them to be read in the church in which you are marrying AND in the church of the parish in which you live. If you are unsure of which is your nearest church, you can check on achurchnearyou.com. Banns are read over 3 weeks and are valid for 3 months from the point of reading.You won’t need to arrange banns until about four months before your wedding date.
If there is not enough notice given for the banns to be read before the marriage is due to take place, or in the case of the marriage of people who are not nationals of a country within the European Economic Area, or if one or both of you does not live in England or Wales, it is recommended that the ‘Licence’ procedure be used rather than banns.
There are some circumstances in which you may need a Special Licence, Common Licence or a Superintendent Registrar’s Certificate to marry in church. Your vicar will let you know if these apply to you.
How much will it cost?
There are statutory fees for marrying in church and also optional extras.
Fees for 2017 are listed below:
Please note that these fees are increased in January each year by the Church of England and are therefore a guide only.
Welford, Weston, Quinton and Long Marston
|Statutory Fees inc Banns and wedding certificate
(as set by the Church of England)
|£424 + 28 + 4 = £456|
|Banns + Certificate only||£41|
|Bells (optional) Welford||£150|
|Bells (Optional) Quinton||£100|
|Additional Candles at Long Marston (optional)||£25|
Booking the wedding?
Telephone Ros Greenhalgh, the Rector (Vicar), on 01789 751546 and she will make an appointment to meet with you and help you prepare for this important occasion.
We do our best to work to your preferred date and book the church when we get your enquiry however the date can only be confirmed when you have met with the vicar. Please do not book your wedding reception venue before you have confirmed that the church and vicar are available.
Documents you’ll need to show before the wedding can be booked:
- All couples will need to show the vicar their passport as proof of nationality. If you don’t have a passport, there are other documents which would be acceptable, so ask your vicar about this.
- If either or both of you are divorced, you will need to bring your decree absolute for the vicar to see.
- You will also be asked to provide evidence of your connection to the church, such as utility bills which show you live or have lived in the parish, or your parents’ marriage certificate if they were married there, for example. You vicar will guide you on acceptable documents for your particular connection.
Useful website: yourchurchwedding.org