Congratulations on your engagement and I am sure you are looking forward to the next stage, the wedding day itself. We at St. Andrew’s are here to ensure that your special day will be just that and it will mark the start of a long and happy marriage.
As a good starting point, and if you are not already part of our congregation, we would encourage you to start coming along to our Church services. This gives us the opportunity to get to know you, and it will help you to familiarise yourself with the Church and the ‘spiritual nature’ of our services before the BIG DAY!
We would also wish to help you prepare for this great adventure by offering you a short course of marriage preparation, along with a meeting to put together the service.
For an informal chat or to arrange to come and meet with us to discuss the arrangements contact the Parish Office on (01892) 837617
However, before we get to this point we need to look at the legal requirements of getting married at St Andrew’s.
For a Methodist wedding you will need to fill out a banns form which give the basic information required by the presiding minister to contact you and make the preliminary arrangements required to make your day go smoothly. You will also be notified that you will be required to contact the Civil Registrar to have your banns called prior to your wedding.
For a Church of England Wedding you need first to fulfil some preliminary requirements.
- You or your partner need to live / have lived within the parish of St Andrew’s Paddock Wood for a period of time.
- You or your partner’s family need to have some sort of qualifying connection with St Andrew’s Church e.g. parents were married, baptised, or confirmed in the church.
- You or your partner are on the electoral roll (membership list) of St Andrew’s.
Furthermore, the following must be noted for all Church of England weddings.
If either of you holds citizenship outside of the UK and the EU you will be required to contact the Civil Registrar to obtain a Superintendent Registrar’s Certificate. Whilst a booking can be taken here at St Andrew’s before the certificate is obtained, no Wedding service can or will be conducted without it being presented to the presiding minister a week before the Wedding Day. Individuals needing to take this route will need an address of residency in the UK for 7 whole days, and to understand that such an application can take up to 70 days process. As a parish we have no control over this what so ever. There is also an additional cost per certificate of £47.00
If you hold citizenship outside of the UK but within the EU you will be required to contact a Surrogate Vicar to swear an affidavit showing you are legally entitled to marry and obtain a ‘Common License’. Whilst a booking can be taken here at St Andrew’s before the affidavit is sworn and the certificate is obtained, no Wedding service can or will be conducted without it being presented to the presiding minister a week before the Wedding Day.
If you hold citizenship in the UK and have grounds on which to marry at St Andrew’s (e.g you live in the parish, are on the membership roll or have a qualifying connection) then we can proceed with the calling of banns both in this parish and /or where you reside. Certificates will however be required to prove your banns have been called in another parish and presented a week before the Wedding.
All of this we can help you with to make sure you qualify, legally, to marry here.
SECOND MARRIAGE The breakdown of marriages is a sad reality in society today. As a Church we can offer marriage of divorcees within certain circumstances. Those wishing to apply for marriage after a divorce should be aware that interviews must be held and information collected before permission to proceed is obtained.
MARRIAGE BLESSING Those who choose a Civil Marriage (in a Registry Office) can also apply to the Church for a Service of Celebration after a Civil marriage. This is similar to a Wedding but its starting point is that you are already married and we now come to call upon God for his blessing.
ANNIVERSARY We also are happy to work with you if you have a special milestone of years happily married that you wish to celebrate. This can be done on a smaller or larger scale depending on what you want.