Things can move very quickly – it is fair to say that this has so far been an unprecedented year globally. However, since lockdown, speed of change seems to have slowed considerably. Some business owners – notably, in the food and drink and the leisure industries – must feel that change can’t come soon enough.
My own field – life-cycle ceremonies, especially weddings and funerals – is still surrounded by uncertainty.
There is no longer any obligation to have direct cremation, although the option remains. So there is at least the opportunity for a ceremony and a degree of closure for families. However, social distancing restrictions mean families cannot attend, if they number more than 30. Those that do often can’t sit together or share a hug for consolation.
There is still the option, of course, for memorial services, scattering of ashes ceremonies, or celebration of life events later – but who knows when these will be permissible?!
As of 22nd June, in Wales weddings may take place once more. That means that registrars will conduct ceremonies, with two witnesses present. However, no big celebrations will be allowed. So marriages and receptions will presumably be separate as well as small. (At least, there is the possibility of live-streaming to a wider audience.)
Currently, similar developments will be happening in England from 4th July, so there is a little light at the end of the tunnel.
The 30-people (plus social distancing) limit will apply. There will probably be restrictions on locations too.
The same will apply to namings and vow renewals (which don’t need registrars).
Well, let’s hope things can soon progress and that it will become easier to plan life-cycle events.
I’m happy to chat things over with you, if you are considering such a ceremony.