Bridesmaids posing with the Bride at Mesnes Park

On the day

We’ve put together a few details to help your day run as smoothly as possible.

Arrival and pre-ceremony checks

Before your ceremony can take place, the registrar and celebrant will meet you both separately to:

  • Ensure the details provided at your notice of marriage are recorded accurately in the marriage register and on your certificates
  • Ask details of natural, step or adopted fathers’ full names and occupations
  • Discuss the order of your ceremony and any personal requirements you may have

We ask that the groom arrive 30 minutes before the ceremony begins. The bride should arrive no later than 15 mins before the ceremony and will be shown to a private room, so that no one will see you until you make your entrance down the aisle.

Guests should be advised to arrive 20 minutes before the start of the ceremony, to ensure that they are all seated before the bride’s entrance.

Don’t be late!

Ceremonies cannot be delayed due to late arrivals. Our registrars may have other ceremonies to attend after yours.

Please factor in extra time if you are planning photographs.


We suggest a special song for the entrance of the Bride, two songs for signing the register and a song to play as you leave the venue following your announcement as a newly married couple.

If you’re having music, you will need to bring this on a CD or alternatively a phone or tablet to be played via Bluetooth. If you wish, you may bring a small portable speaker to play the music.

Approved premises – Please arrange your music directly with the venue.

Your ceremony

If you’re being ‘given away’ and will be accompanied by bridesmaids, attendants etc., the registrars will co-ordinate this for you.

For same sex marriages, one partner can be given away or both if you wish.

Everything you say (your vows) during the ceremony you will simply repeat after the Celebrant, so you do not need to learn or remember anything. All words are said in short sentences.

If you have chosen additional vows these are added after the legal wording. If you have personal words to say to each other, or any readings by friends or family, the Celebrant will include these in the ceremony.

Your rings can be placed on the ring cushion, or they can be brought forward by the best man, or your child/children.


The law requires you to have two witnesses at your marriage. They can be relatives or friends but must be able to speak and understand English.

Children and young people can sign the register as additional witnesses.

Signing the register

After your wedding ceremony you will be asked to sign the register. Please make sure you read the information recorded carefully before doing so.

If you wish to amend any information in the register please discuss this directly with the Register Office before signing.

Any request to change or update information after it has been signed will be subject to a charge of up to £90 depending on the error and in some cases it will not be possible to change the information recorded.

We will arrange a photo opportunity after the ceremony to capture this special moment.


If one or both of you are unable to speak and/or understand English you will need to provide an interpreter. You can’t interpret for each other.

If the registrar is not satisfied with your understanding of English they will be unable to continue.


You will receive a marriage certificate on the day. If you would like to order any extra marriage certificates, you can do so online through MyAccount.

If you would like a commemorative certificate as a keepsake, or to present as a gift to parents or grandparents, they must be ordered in advance as they’re signed by the couple, witnesses and Celebrant after the ceremony. We also have beautiful white gift boxes to keep your marriage certificate in. If ordered in advance your marriage certificate will be presented to you on the day in this special box.

If you need help or advice with your special day get in touch

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