Who doesn't love an outdoor civil wedding ceremony? We at Rock My Wedding certainly do. One of the many, many difficulties brought about by COVID-19 was the halting of weddings. The industry went through a particularly turbulent time over the last few years, but it wasn't just the people working within it. Hundreds of thousands of couples had to reschedule or cancel their weddings. This caused mass distress for families, suppliers and venues alike. It wasn't all bad, though - we saw some gorgeous weddings as restrictions slowly eased. Like Lauren & Robert's town hall COVID wedding! When temporary measures were brought about in July 2021 opening up a much wider range of locations for couples to get married outdoors, the wedding world rejoiced! And these laws have now been made permanent! Today, we'll be going over the laws, how they've changed, what it means for you, and where you can have an outdoor civil wedding ceremony now.
If you're planning an outdoor civil wedding ceremony, this is for you!
So, how have the laws changed?
In short, the temporary measures that were introduced during the pandemic are now going to continue indefinitely. As aforemetioned, in July 2021 a new law came into place that allowed for a bigger pool of options for outdoor wedding venues. These measures were meant to end in April 2022. An overwhelming 90% of people backed the permanent legislation of outdoor weddings, according to GOV.UK. This law change will definitely provide more flexibility and choice for couples - hooray!
The new law brings about a lot of positive change. Firstly, when the legislation was not permanent, it meant there was an air of uncertainty about how long it would last, what it meant for the wedding industry, and how the sector would be able to invest. Now that it's permanent, it allows the wedding industry some financial certainty. Secondly, couples are now able to have the whole ceremony outside. Not only this is super aesthetically pleasing, but it's safer, more eco-friendly, and more flexible. Now, that's a lot of positivity!
Where can I have an outdoor civil wedding ceremony?
This change applies to venues in England and Wales that already have an indoor civil wedding ceremony license. As long as the venue in question has a license in at least one area, then an outdoor civil wedding ceremony can commence outdoors there. That is to say, anywhere within its own boundary. It's important to remember that this law change does not apply to venues that don't have a license. By this, we mean places without a permanent structure. Think beaches, fields, private gardens, etc. There is a loophole here, though. If you decide to get a celebrant, then you can have your outdoor wedding anywhere you want! If that tickles your fancy, we've got a host of brilliant wedding celebrants to choose from.
Will the laws change again?
In a nutshell, we're not entirely sure. There is currently an ongoing Law Commision report about marriage laws, due to be published in July. This report is looking into modernising and improving marriage law. This would include enlarging the options for wedding locations, and whether more kinds of weddings should be legalised. If you're planning your wedding soon, and have always wanted to get married somewhere special and personal to you, that could very well happen soon! We at Rock My Wedding absolutely love to see this positive change in the wedding industry, and we will continue to support them today, tomorrow, and forever!
Outdoor civil wedding ceremony rules just got better!
So, there we have it. A brief run-through of the new law regarding outdoor weddings. Hopefully you've been able to gleam some useful information that will come in handy when planning your own outdoor wedding. If you want some visual aids of gorgeous outdoor weddings, look no further - we've got you. Beth & Nic's beautiful outdoor wedding was a two-day celebration bonanza! Keeping your wedding outdoors is great for your ecological footprint. If you need some green-fingered advice, then our article on eco-friendly weddings is a great place to start. In line with eco-friendly weddings, DIYing your own decor is a great idea, and looks fantastic at outdoor (and indoor!) weddings. Luckily, Rock My Wedding's TikTok page has lots of DIY videos to have a scroll through.