We’ve asked Truly Marv exhibitor and celebrant Bridget Garrett to explain to us exactly what is a wedding celebrant?
Who are they?
Celebrants have been trained in all aspects of planning, writing and conducting ceremonies. From choosing music and readings, poems and symbolic actions, they will listen and interpret your ideas.
A celebrant will start with a blank sheet of paper and will fill it with all your personal stories, history, cultural and/or religious traditions and particularly, your humour. It will be recognisably your story with your stamp on it.
How is it different to a Civil Ceremony?
No couples are the same, your path to love is unique and why would you want your ceremony to sound like everyone else’s?
Every Celebrant led wedding ceremony will be personalised. The Celebrant will help you write the whole script and your special vows. You get to approve every word of the ceremony. You can if you wish include religious content (which a Registrar cannot). You can include your family, your children, your friends or your pets. You can really go for a theme - the more creative, the better if you want to conga down the aisle, then go for it. The only limit is your imagination!
A Celebrant can conduct ceremonies at any time of the day and at any venue. So you can marry at dawn on a cliff top or at dusk in a forest, if you want to. Venues do not need a licence, so the options are truly endless.
Is it a legal marriage?
No. Celebrants cannot conduct the legalities of a marriage so you have to legally register before a Registrar. You can easily do this by using a short registration service at your local Registry Office before two witnesses no rings, no vows, no fuss, until your ‘real’ ceremony with a Celebrant.
What does the service include?
A Celebrant becomes one of your wedding team. They will meet you in person, often at your venue, to discuss your ceremony. Over the following months they will work on all aspects of the ceremony until it is perfect, liaising with you via email, Skype or meetings in person. Significantly, Celebrants rehearse with you before the event so you know exactly what to expect on the big day. They will work with all the other wedding professionals in your team, so your day goes according to plan. Most Celebrants will give you a presentation copy of your ceremony to keep and of course you’ll have all those fantastic memories of your very own personal wedding ceremony to look back on.
What does it cost?
Prices can vary, some Celebrants will quote for each wedding, others have a fixed price, but most start from between £300-£500. It’s around the same price as using a Registrar to come to a venue, but the added value you get from a Celebrant is significant.
Choosing a Wedding Celebrant for your wedding will give you more control, wider options and a much more personal and memorable ceremony for your special day.
Bridget Garrett is an Accredited Civil Celebrant living and working in Ipswich. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phoning 07913 203177.