Who’d plan a major event at this time?
Off-putting as it may be – with regulations changing almost by the day and often ambiguous – people have not been deterred from arranging life-cycle events.
Although some have cancelled their wedding, most have been rearranging them.
The Latest Changes
You will probably have noted that weddings are now permissible again (obviously, subject to social distancing etc.). However, this good news is diluted by other realities.
Apparently, there is a serious shortage of registrars, so this is causing further delays. A number of people are therefore turning to civil celebrants so that they can at least have the service. They then book the legal ceremony at the register office whenever that is possible.
Another cause of delay is the venues. These have to consider risk assessments and may need to make major structural changes.
Assuming all is COVID-secure, here (based on the government’s guidelines this week) are some things you need to bear in mind for your wedding (in no particular order):
The conditions I’m about to mention currently seem to extend only to full religious or register office services. There is no clarity about celebrant-led ceremonies. Probably, the same rstrictions apply.
Services should be kept as short as possible.
Religions may need to adapt traditional practice (eg avoiding processions).
Numbers attending receptions should not exceed 30 people. Social distancing should be observed between different households.
There can be no food or drink during a service, unless required for solemnisation.
If rings are to be exchanged, hands should be washed before and after. Rings are to be handled by as few people as possible.
If an infant is involved, it should be held by its parent/guardian or household member.
Noise (singing, shouting, playing music etc.) should be kept to a minimum. Spoken responses likewise.
Avoid instruments that are blown into. If singing/chanting is required, only one person should do this. Recordings should be used, not communal singing.
So there is – cautious – progress!
If you’d like to discuss working with a civil celebrant, then I’d love to have a chat with you.