Congratulations on your engagement! We’re delighted you’re seeking information about being married at St Michael’s.
Getting married is one of the most important occasions in life and cannot happen without a service! We will do everything we can to ensure that it is really special and that your arrangements are right for you. We are also here to help you prepare for your married life together. By getting married in church, you are asking for God’s blessing on your life together – the best start you can have.
Can we get married at St Michael’s?
If one or both of you live in the parish or worship regularly in St Michael’s you are entitled to get married here by banns. This is an old tradition, still legally required, whereby an announcement of your impending marriage is read out in church on three Sundays beforehand. Traditionally, this gives members of the public a chance to object to the marriage but this is extremely rare these days! To find out if you live in our parish, please click here.
If neither of you live in the Parish, it may still be possible to get married here, for example if you or one of your parents have lived in the parish in the past. If you choose to attend services regularly for six months you can apply to be placed on the church electoral roll and therefore get married by banns. The vicar will be happy to advise you on this. There may be other circumstances under which a wedding here would be possible – please contact us.
Why get married in church?
There are many venues now available for weddings, so why choose to get married in a church? People get married in church for many different reasons. But by choosing to have a Christian marriage service in church you are seeking God’s help to sustain you in your marriage over the years to come. We do encourage everyone getting married at St Michael’s to come and join us in worship for a few Sunday mornings – this helps you feel more comfortable on your wedding day.
I have been previously married and am now divorced. Can I be married at St Michael’s?
The Church of England affirms that marriage should always be undertaken as a “solemn, public and life-long covenant between a man and a woman“. It recognises that sometimes there is an irreconcilable breakdown in relationships. The church also recognises that the Christian faith is about new beginnings. It would be important that anyone applying to be considered for a marriage in church after divorce had all the issues from their first marriage amicably settled. The vicar will need to speak with you in some detail and will need to see your decree absolute. Marriage is not usually solemnised in church after more than one divorce.
When do we have to book?
It is best to book the church as soon as you have decided to get married. We currently have bookings up to two years in advance but there are still plenty of spare dates in the calendar. It is important to check with us that the church is available before booking your reception. Usually we do not have more than two weddings on any day – it is important that you do not feel rushed, and the clergy, choir and organist are all fresh to help make your day special.
What does the service consist of?
The normal pattern for a service contains music for the entrance of the bride, two or three hymns, music during the signing of the register and music as the couple walk back down the aisle. The church organist will be happy to talk through these items with you. The service also includes one or two readings – one of which must be a Bible reading. Our choir can sing at the service, and the bells can be rung at the end of the service to greet the married couple.
Do you allow our guests to throw confetti?
Yes – but please away from the church door! We do ask confetti is biodegradable; we have lots of squirrels and birds in our church garden.
Do we have to get married on a Saturday?
No – it is possible to get married on any day of the week, providing that the church is available. If you wish to get married on another day of the week please enquire. A choir may not always be available at midweek services but we will do our best to accommodate your request.
What do we need to do now?
To discuss the possibility of getting married at St Michael’s or if you have further questions please contact us.