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New Law May Change Wedding Plans For Thousand Of Church Ceremonies

Gregory Robinson

Published 
| Last updated 

New Law May Change Wedding Plans For Thousand Of Church Ceremonies

Featured Image Credit: Unsplash

A groundbreaking law change in the UK could mean churches will be allowed to hold weddings for the outdoors permanently.

The Ministry of Justice launched a consultation on Monday to extend the relaxed, temporary rules that were introduced in order to increase the size of weddings in July this year.

This rule change gave couples a chance to move ahead with their plans to tie the knot after being impacted by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Churches will be able to hold weddings outdoors again (Credit: Unsplah)
Churches will be able to hold weddings outdoors again (Credit: Unsplah)

The plans, should they go ahead, could affect an estimated 55,000 ceremonies each year by allowing them to happen at places of worship, like the grounds of a church.

The proposed changes mirror medieval weddings, when it was common for ceremonies to take place outside the front of the church. This is why many churches from that period have a projecting porch.

No group would be forced to provide outdoor ceremonies if they decide not to and current protections to safeguard religious freedoms would remain in place.

Rules were introduced last summer to help those affected by the pandemic get married (Credit: Unsplash)
Rules were introduced last summer to help those affected by the pandemic get married (Credit: Unsplash)

If the changes are approved, the Marriages and Civil Partnerships (Approved Premises) Regulations 2005 would be amended.

Tom Pursglove, a justice minister, said: "A wedding is one of the absolute highlights of a person's life and it is right that couples should have greater choice in how they celebrate their special day.”

Ministers say the aim of the new rules is to give people greater flexibility and to reduce cost.

Before the pandemic ushered in the temporary rules last summer, civil ceremonies could take place indoors at an approved location with a “permanent structure”, such as a hotel.

Should the rules go ahead, churches will not be forced to host outdoor weddings (Credit: Unsplash)
Should the rules go ahead, churches will not be forced to host outdoor weddings (Credit: Unsplash)

Pursglove added: “Our proposals would afford them that choice whether they choose a civil or religious ceremony, and would mark a huge boost for those planning a wedding over the coming years.

"Crucially, this will also support the wedding sector by ensuring venues can continue to safely meet the demand for larger ceremonies."

Topics: Wedding, Sex and Relationships, News

Gregory Robinson
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