What is a wedding celebrant

Have you ever wondered what a wedding celebrant is? If you want the freedom of organising a personalised wedding which is unique to you, a celebrant may be the perfect choice.

Wedding Celebrant

What is the Difference Between a Celebrant and a Registrar?

There is a big difference between a celebrant and a registrar. A registrar is employed by the local authorities; their purpose is to conduct and register marriages in a registry office and other approved venues. Registry ceremonies stick to a standard script and can only be personalised with a limited choice of readings and music. To be legally married in the UK, you are required to sign a marriage license in front of a registrar or a priest. The vows and the exchanging of rings are purely ceremonial, they are not a legal obligation.

A wedding celebrant is a person who has been trained by a relevant organisation, and will conduct non-legally binding wedding ceremonies. The legal side of your wedding will have to be conducted at the registry office. The legal ceremony and signing of the register and license takes around 10 minutes, and costs around £100. As a couple you can either do the legal bit before or after your ‘wedding’. You can then have your celebrant conduct a more personal wedding service for you, which can include writing your own vows. You can conduct this type of ceremony in almost any location.

Why Choose a Wedding Celebrant?

The reason why some couples choose a wedding celebrant is because this gives them the freedom to really personalise their wedding ceremony. Couples can write their own vows, read poems, add symbolic rituals, and have the ceremony anywhere they like. If you fancy getting married on the beach or in the forest, you can! Jennifer Constant is the founder of The Celebrant Directory, and laid out the facts for Wedding Ideas Magazine:

“While many will have heard of a wedding celebrant, not everyone understands exactly what they do, and there are a surprising amount of misconceptions, which it’s time to clear up…Simply put, a celebrant is a person who performs and officiates formal ceremonies, and whilst commonly seen at weddings they can also conduct other services like renewals, baby naming and funeral rites. The beauty of what celebrants offer is the sheer versatility to help couples create tailored, unique ceremonies that reflect their personalities and love for each other.”

You will not be required to sign any documentation during the ceremony, although many couples wish to sign a commemorative certificate. This can be presented in a keepsake folder with personal vows and readings included, and will be offered at the close of the ceremony. This a lovely memento to a very special day.

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