Having been suspended when lockdown measures were introduced in March, registration of marriages and civil partnerships was finally allowed to resume on 15 August. The government has issued guidance on how ceremonies and receptions should be conducted in order to be as safe as reasonably possible. Some of the provisions are eye-catching, and will make for quite different weddings to those we are used to:
1. There should be no more than 30 attendees, including the couple themselves, at the ceremony or the reception.
2. Social distancing between members of different households should be maintained.
3. Excessively loud singing, shouting, or otherwise raising your voice should be avoided.
4. The requirement to wear face coverings applies to guests at register offices, places of worship and other common indoor wedding venues. However, the couple themselves and the person officiating are excluded from this requirement.
5. Reception venues have been instructed to prohibit live music and dancing.
6. Potential guests over the age of 70 are advised not to attend.
Given the restrictions in place, the number of weddings taking place is likely to remain lower than usual for some time to come, with many couples opting to wait until things are a little closer to normal.
COVID-19: Guidance for small marriages and civil partnerships