Church versus Civil Ceremony

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If you’ve recently become engaged then you’ll busy with the excitement of the first stages of planning the big day. You might not be sure whether to go for a church wedding or a civil ceremony and whatever you want personally, you’ll need to bear in mind how your guests will feel too. This can be a tricky decision if you are from a particularly religious background.

You may still wish to tie the knot in a religious setting, whether it’s to take your vows in the sight of God or purely because you respect the tradition. If you’re dead against a church ceremony but are seeking to appease those in your family that would prefer a religious ceremony – be aware that you won’t be able to have any religious elements in a civil ceremony, not even candles and particularly no religious readings.

If you want a church for traditional reasons – then the path is straightforward. You’ll need to find the church and then choose a reception venue. For Essex Wedding Venues, visit A registry office can usually be found in the centre of a town or city, so if you choose a rural reception venue you’ll need transport.

The third option is to hold your wedding in a location that has a licence for conducting marriages and holding receptions. There are many hotels and historic venues that offer such a service, which means you can spend your whole day at one location, making life easier for you and guests as there is no need for travel.

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The advantage of the tradition set up, a church wedding and reception elsewhere is that you can choose to hold your reception party anywhere and have more flexibility. However, this also causes more effort in the planning stages, as well as creating more opportunities for things to go wrong.

Keeping everything in one place does restrict your options somewhat but there are also multiple benefits. Moving all your guests from one to venue to another will be more time consuming than the simplicity of moving from one room to another. Having all your guests and helpful staff under one roof is a great stress-reducer, leaving you to relax and enjoy the day more without worrying about why someone hasn’t yet arrived from the church.

Another lovely thing about having your wedding under one roof is that it prolongs the festivities. Family members and friends who have travelled to join you on your big day will most likely take advantage of any slight discount for hotel rooms booked by members of the wedding party. This means that you can all congregate for breakfast in the morning and share some giggles and memories of the previous day.

Whatever you decide, make sure that you are making the right decision for you and your partner. Hopefully, you’ll only have one big day and so it needs to be the day that you both want and not the day you feel pressured into having for the benefit of your family.