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Midnight Marriages available in Wiltshire

September 7, 2012 10:23 AM

A pair of wedding rings (small) (Jeff Belmonte. Licensed as Creative Commons Attribution 2.0.)Wiltshire Council is to remove restrictions on wedding times. The Marriage Act 1949 restricts the hours during which a marriage can be legally solemnised to between 8.00 am and 6.00 pm, but that has now been overtaken by The Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, which permits Local Authorities to remove the time restrictions for marriages and civil partnerships as of October 1st this year.

The only thing which might stop a couple getting married in the middle of the night or on Christmas Day would be finding two registration officers to do the job. The standard fee for a wedding ranges from £385 on weekdays to £490 on Bank Holidays. Costs for Civil Partnerships range from £105 Monday to Friday to £164 on Bank Holidays.

In another change to the rules churches and religious establishments will be able to apply for a license to hold civil ceremonies. Despite the fact that churches have usually been marrying people for centuries such a license would only be granted after an inspection to make sure modern rules on Health & Safety and disabled access were satisfied. Also the rules say that religious and secular ceremonies musn't be mixed, so if you hold a civil marriage in a church there's no stopping half way through for a quick pray.

Full report on WC website