Weddings and Vow Renewals

Richard is delighted to have been accredited by Humanists UK to perform weddings and vow renewals.

He works with excited couples in crafting together their unique ceremony at their chosen location and understands how such a significant occasion in a couple and families life requires a bespoke and individual ceremony.

A humanist wedding ceremony embeds a couple within their family, their friends and their community.  Weddings can either be traditionally lavish or a quieter affair.  There are not many scenarios ‘out of bounds’ in Richard’s opinion.

A humanist wedding ceremony, or vow renewal, is a wonderful, personal and unique ceremony which is tailored to the requirements of the couple and is a public reflection of you, your relationship and your hopes for the future.

Humanist wedding ceremonies are both non-religious and extremely personal, in that they don’t follow a set script – your wedding is, literally, your wedding!   That said, Richard ensures that his ceremonies are inclusive and definitely not designed to cause any discomfort to others that hold different beliefs to his.

It is important that a humanist celebrant, the couple and often others work as a team to facilitate and produce a fitting ceremony, which not only matches the couple’s requirements but is also a true reflection of their commitment to each other.

You may also be looking to renew your wedding vows for a variety of different reasons.  Richard is happy to talk through with you your options for such a ceremony.

This is a suggested structure for a humanist wedding ceremony, which consists of: –

  • Entry– usually to a piece of music chosen by the couple
  • Introductory remarks– including the celebrant welcoming those present, describing the ceremony, describing the important role of those present and so on.
  • Your journey – the most important (and exciting) part of the ceremony where those present will hear about the history of your relationship followed by your commitments, aspirations and intentions to each other for many years to come.
  • Vows, Ring Exchange etc. Bespoke vows are ordinarily exchanged along with wedding rings.  There are other symbolic features to consider, such as hand fasting, ring-warming and sand-blending.
  • Closing words – includes the expression of good wishes and exit to chosen music.

You may also wish to involve close family members and friends in your ceremony by, for example, reciting meaningful poetry or readings, or performing music. There are a number of recognised rituals which can also form part of the ceremony. Richard has plenty of suggestions and examples for you to consider.

Ceremonies last somewhere between 20 and 45 mins, but ordinarily for around half an hour – once again this depends on your requirements.

Further information on Humanist wedding ceremonies, including frequently asked questions and a downloadable wedding video, can be found at this link https://humanism.org.uk/ceremonies/non-religious-weddings/.

Unfortunately, humanist wedding ceremonies are not yet legally recognised in England and Wales, as they are in other parts of the United Kingdom.  Whilst this is anticipated to change in the future, sadly this will not be soon enough for your wedding.  You will need to legally register your wedding, usually before your humanist wedding ceremony.  Richard can advise you regarding this necessary process.

Richard’s fee will depend on the type of ceremony and any potential additional costs but will never exceed the amount of a local registrar’s maximum charge.  For example, in the Blackpool area this would be around £450.  Vow renewals will ordinarily be less than a wedding dependent upon what is required.

Included in the fee is the following: –

  • All travelling within a 50-mile radius.
  • An initial meeting where I can get to know you and your requirements and discuss the type of ceremony you desire.
  • A second meeting (usually 3 months before the big day!) where I gather all the information I need and, sometimes, set you some homework!
  • A unique script for your ceremony which will be amended throughout the planning process to ensure you are happy with it, it matches your requirements and is perfect for you both. This can be done by telephone or email.
  • A final meeting to read through the script or at a rehearsal at the venue.
  • On the day of your wedding, I will arrive in good time and make sure everything is in place.
  • I will lead your wedding ceremony and present to you a commemorative copy of your ceremony for you to keep.
  • After the ceremony I will send you an electronic copy of the script so that you can share it with family and friends, especially those who were unable to attend.

If you decide that you would like a humanist wedding ceremony and afford Richard the absolute privilege to conduct it, then please contact him as soon as possible so that you can meet in person and commence the planning.

Contact details are

Tel: 07447 908305

Email: Richard.spedding@humanistceremonies.org.uk

Web: https://humanist.org.uk/richardspedding/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/richardspeddingcelebrant/