FAQ about Celebrant Ceremonies: Why choose a Celebrant and not a Registrar?
- Many modern couples want to host their wedding ceremonies a non-licenced space. This could be their garden, or in a marquee or tipi in a farmer’s field. Their only option is a personalised Ceremony created and performed by an Independent or a Humanist Celebrant. Council Registrars can’t perform a marriage at a non-licenced premises.
- For venues which do have a Civil Licence, then using Registrars is the favoured option for many couples. But the basic civil marriage ceremony script has many limitations including the choice of wording, vows, music and spiritual content, as well as restraints over location and timings. With a Celebrant you have carte-blanche to create a ceremony that’s totally you – with your views, values and vows at its heart.
- If your budget is limited (and whose isn’t?), a licenced venue hire added to the cost of Registrars travelling out may be prohibitive. It’s more cost-effective to use a Celebrant.
- Why not book a self-catered property on airbnb, kate & tom’s, Mulberry Cottages or Big Cottages? Find somewhere that could host a large house-party to make a long weekend of it with friends and family? Once you stop searching for traditional ‘wedding venues’ there’s much more choice and your budget will stretch further! We love Roseyard!
FAQ: What’s the Difference?
- Celebrants write and create a bespoke ceremony script just for you – so no two will be the same. Registrars simply “fill the gaps” with Name A & Name B into a very basic script – it’s just not possible for them to personalise your wedding in the same way a Celebrant can.
- A personal Wedding Ceremony can incorporate many different elements – we like to tell your love story, and you can enhance these words with any symbolism like handfasting, ring-warming or a unity candle lighting.
- We encourage you to write your own personal wedding vows – with help if you need it. You may be lucky to get a choice of a couple of basic sentences when using a Registrar.
- A Celebrant gets to know you as they plan your ceremony, so that you feel comfortable and prepared. You wouldn’t meet a Registrar until your wedding day.
- We include a full in-person Rehearsal close to the wedding day in our full wedding package. For other ceremonies we might still practice but this is via Zoom or WhatsApp.
- Every Celebrant tailors their ceremonies to each couple, to produce a bespoke script. Some are intimate and brief, others longer and more complex but all will be absolutely personal!
- We meet all of our couples personally and they often book us months or years before the Wedding Day. Celebrants work together with their clients to produce the perfect ceremony that reflects you as a couple.
- You can hold your Wedding Ceremony anywhere and at any time. There’s nothing stopping you having a moonlit wedding ceremony under the stars! Most couples wish to spend the whole day with their guests and so generally weddings tend to start in the early afternoon.
FAQ: How Much do you Charge?
- Our prices are published here. All Celebrants are different, and come with varying price points. For some it’s a hobby or side hustle, to bolster either another employment or their early retirement. For Katie, it is her dedicated and only full-time profession, meaning you can get hold of her at any time, and there are more opportunities to meet or Zoom in the diary. It also means that weekday dates are available for your lovely weddings too.
- Our most popular wedding fee includes unlimited contact and as many meetings and revisions to the script as we need, plus a full in-situ rehearsal. It takes approximately 50 hours of work in total to produce, refine and deliver your script. Significantly more than the half an hour that your guests will see us for! We provide an infinitely more personal service than you’d receive from a Registrar, so please don’t try to compare the two.
- We always use a robust high-quality PA system outdoors. We know exactly how frustrating it can be for a guest who can’t hear the ceremony words. And particularly your beautifully-composed and emotional vows! We’ll play your ceremony music if you like, meaning you don’t need to source a separate PA. We offer a hand-held microphone to anyone who’s doing readings, and for you to speak your loving vows to one another.
- We’re super happy to coordinate and liaise with all the other professionals you’ve hired, ensuring your wedding runs just as smoothly as it can – again our fee includes this element of stage management – which you would certainly not get with a Registrar!
FAQ: Is the Ceremony Legal?
- A Celebrant-led Wedding Ceremony is symbolic, beautiful and personal, but not legal or binding. Another way people describe it is a Wedding Blessing.
- UK-based couples split the legal and ceremonial elements of their wedding into two parts. They have a basic legal marriage at a Register Office, before their Celebrant-led Wedding Ceremony. Most major Register Offices call this a ‘Statutory Registration of Marriage’ and it’s the quickest, cheapest way to organise the legalities.
- International couples may have already taken part in a brief legal marriage many months before their ‘English Wedding Day’. They still think of this as their “proper” wedding though.
- The Ceremony that we create for you will be forever remembered as your actual Wedding Day. We often hear that our personal wedding ceremonies have touched your family and friends very deeply!
- We adore performing weddings in the great outdoors – whether festival-style, or at home. This is one of the most popular reasons for having a Celebrant-led wedding.
- Under current Marriage Law in England & Wales, a Registrar civil licence is issued to venues with a permanent structure. This is why “Wedding Gazebos” pop up in hotel grounds so they can offer an “outdoor” wedding ceremony. Often it’s just your guests seated fully outside – you’re hidden away under the dark gloomy gazebo!
FAQ: Are you a Humanist?
No we’re not, but people do often get confused about the differences! Being completely independent, we can blend many ideas (religious, secular, modern or traditional) into our couples’ scripts, without imposing our own views. This creates the content that reflects your personalities and background. Often, our couples have had a religious upbringing but don’t want to marry in such a formal ceremony. We can incorporate any symbolic rituals from your heritage into your personal ceremony. We’ll perform modern handfastings, and can offer ring-warming, a mead toast or jumping the broom as “pagan-style” enhancements.
FAQ: What do you Allow in the Ceremony?
- The more creative, the better. We love dog ring-bearers, flower-boys or couple karaoke! Want to down shots with all your guests as a finale?
- If it means something to you, let’s include it! This could be spiritual content, modern contemporary writing, or best of all, live music.
- The best wedding ceremonies have fun and humour running through them, as well as the serious stuff. We firmly believe that it’s your ceremony, and you own it! Friends, family, children or pets can play a part – or if you like, we can get all your guests involved too!
I hope you found our FAQ about Celebrant Ceremonies useful. Please get in touch using any of the methods on the Contact Us page. We’d love to hear from you!