Where you hold your wedding is likely to be a vital question for you to resolve. You surely want to be married in a place that you both love.
The obvious choices
It’s simple, if you go down the full religious route. It’ll be your religious building.
It’s almost as simple if you’re having a Register Office affair. You make an appointment to attend the office, with two witnesses, and that can be it. (However, the Registrars will come out to some venues – though at quite a price!)
There’s another choice
You don’t have to be bound by those two alternatives. You can opt for the civil celebrant route, and then it’s a different ball-game.
This doesn’t negate the Registrars. You still have to get legally married first. That means making an appointment before the ceremony (as above).
The difference is that now you can also have your personalised ceremony – in the venue of your dreams.
And that means almost anywhere! It could be in your back garden or (with permission, of course) in a field next to a canal, up the Shard, at Stonehenge, by the seaside, in the Savoy Hotel, in a hot-air balloon … – well, you get the picture!
If you’re arranging the ceremony yourself, you’ll need a celebrant, and probably suppliers such as florists, photographers, make-up artists, caterers, etc.
You may want to hire a wedding planner. For the extra cost, you get peace of mind. Depending on the package you agree, every detail can be organised and overseen for you.
Regardless, you need to get permission/pay for the venue you may be using.
All this should be arranged well in advance – generally, at least a year ahead, as some of the suppliers get booked up quite early.
With all suppliers, try and get first-hand reports from people who have used them. This may be word-of-mouth or website testimonials, but speaking to them directly is important. You can ask your questions and get a feel for the supplier’s attitude.
Remember good old health and safety – especially if you’re organising everything yourself. (No trailing wires; ensure there are sufficient toilets; check signposting etc. etc.)
The bottom line is that you really can choose where (and how) to mark your big day. Of course, if you need any advice on the ceremony, just contact your friendly neighbourhood celebrant!