As lockdown measures change, weddings and civil ceremonies are back on but you’ll have to adhere to these new lockdown wedding rules.
Ever since the coronavirus pandemic hit, we’ve been speculating the fate of the wedding industry and trying to predict what weddings after COVID-19 will look like. While an earlier ease in lockdown measures saw the ban on weddings and civil ceremonies lifted, and a later update saw receptions of up to 30 people permitted, the government has now introduced new guidelines. Wedding ceremonies and ‘sit-down’ receptions will now be limited to 15 people.
Plus there are some stringed COVID-19 wedding rules you’ll need to stick to.
If you’ve already had to postpone your wedding and have a new date in the pipeline, or your big day has always been set for summer 2020, you might be tying the knot sooner than previously suggested. However, while you can rejoice in the fact your wedding day may be just around the corner, there’s quite a hefty list of lockdown wedding rules you’ll need to stick to, and the big day you imagined could still be quite a long way off.
The Post-Lockdown Wedding Rules
When the Prime Minister gave permission for weddings and civil ceremonies to take place from Saturday 4th July, he also introduced a series of COVID-19 wedding rules. These rules and restrictions have been adapted as we continue to fight the global pandemic and are subject to change. Check out the latest lockdown wedding rules you’ll need to follow:
- Only 15 people in total allowed to attend the ceremony
- ‘Sit-down’ receptions of up to 15 people permitted
- Outdoor receptions can have up to 15 people from different households
- Social distancing: members of the different households will have to adhere to the new 1m social distancing measures.
- Father’s cannot walk their daughters arm-in-arm down the aisle (if they’re in different households)
- Couples need to wash their hands after exchanging rings
- No food or drink to be served or consumed
- No singing
- No using instruments that need to be blown into
- Organs are allowed but need to be cleaned before use
- Spoken vows and readings to ‘not be in a raised voice’
What the new Lockdown Wedding Rules Mean
Although the easing of lockdown measures has meant many brides and grooms-to-be can move ahead with their wedding plans in the UK from the 4th July, these new rules will have a huge affect on how your wedding day will run and what it will look like.
Social Distancing at Weddings in Lockdown
After initially enforcing a full-on ban on all weddings and ceremonies on 23rd March 2020, from next week weddings will be permitted in England. However, as some lockdown measures and social distancing are still being enforced, you’re big day will look very different.
Be aware that these new social distancing rules in particular may takeaway some of the intimate moments you should treasure from your wedding. For example fathers will not be able to walk their daughters down the aisle arm-in-arm and hugs of congratulations from members of another household will be discouraged.
This may also mean big changes to the layout of your venue and order of the day.
More Ceremony Rules
During the wedding ceremony singing in groups is not permitted, nor are any instruments which require the user to blow into them. You will also need to ensure any speeches, readings or vows avoid any raised voices.
When it comes to food and drink at your wedding, serving or consuming is not permitted unless under exceptional circumstances and couples will need to wash their hands after the exchange of rings.
Venues will be advised to keep a record of all visitors for 21 days, in case they need to be traced following an outbreak of coronavirus within the wedding party.Couples are also advised to keep their ceremonies as short as possible.
COVID-19 Wedding Reception Rules
It was previously “strongly advised” for receptions after the wedding to take place, and a number of venues had banned them all together.
Now, the government has given the go-ahead for wedding receptions of up to 30 guests to take place from 15 August.
If you are planning a small wedding reception, be weary that for the time being it is only small celebrations that are permitted and you will need to adhere to strict guidelines. Your venues may also have their own social distancing measures and rules in place.