Outdoor civil marriage and partnership ceremonies to be legalized

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Civil marriage and partnership ceremonies will be able to take place for the first time outdoors in England and Wales from next month.

Laws for approved premises, such as hotels, currently require the ceremony to take place in an approved hall or permanent structure.

But from July 1, these places will be able to host the entire event outdoors as part of the legalization of open-air civil ceremonies.

Justice Secretary Robert Buckland said: “A couple’s wedding day is one of the most special times in their lives and this change will allow them to celebrate it however they want.

“At the same time, this step will support the wedding industry by offering more choice and helping venues meet the demand for larger ceremonies. “

It will be greeted as a boost for the wedding industry after the hardships of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The amendment to the law will be introduced through a statutory instrument, which means that a vote will not need to take place.

Meanwhile, a minor easing of coronavirus restrictions in England will see the 30-person ceiling for weddings lifted from Monday.

Instead, sites will be asked to limit the number based on space and apply social distancing measures, including wearing face coverings indoors.


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