Congratulations on your engagement! An exciting and happy time lies ahead and there will be so much to think about. Thank you for considering All Saints Grayswood as a place to be married; we hope you will have a very happy time planning your wedding.
If you require further information please contact the Church Office.
Who can get married at All Saints, Grayswood?
Please check at an early stage that you meet all the legal requirements in full - otherwise the wedding cannot take place. The Church of England minister does not only conduct the ceremony, but is also the registrar for the occasion, and as such has to ensure that everything is done properly.
These are the legal requirements for getting married in All Saints (common to all CofE churches) which you would need to meet.
1 If either of you live within the United Benefice (in Grayswood or Haslemere parish - St Bart’s and St Christopher’s, but not Shottermill, Weyhill) you have a right to be married in your parish church. You can check your parish by visiting A Church Near You and entering your postcode. You will need to know your parish for having Banns read where you live.
2 If that is not the case, but you have what’s called a ‘qualifying connection’ to either of the above parishes then you can fill in a form to that effect and everything else is straightforward. A qualifying connection includes: one or both of you, or your parents or grandparents have lived here or worshipped here for at least 6 months in your lifetime, or were married here, or you were baptised here.
3 If none of the above apply, there are two ways still open to you:
a) if you attend this church regularly, after 6 months you can be entered on the All Saints electoral roll – the membership list - and then it is straightforward.
b) you can apply directly to the Archbishop of Canterbury for a Special Licence although you would still have to give a good reason for wanting to be married here. This process can be lengthy and incurs additional fees.
What will my church wedding cost?
The statutory fees cover the cost of the publication of Banns (where applicable), the service and use of church and the marriage certificate. There are additional fees payable for the organist and the verger. If you would like the church choir to sing or would like someone to video the service these will incur additional fees.
The statutory fees are set nationally by the Church Commissioners for that year. You will be given a copy of the current fees during your preliminary interview and we can discuss your options. In law, you are not required to pay for the wedding before it takes place, but in practice, you may find it more convenient to do so, and you will be sent an invoice about a month before the service takes place.
The reading of Banns
Calling Banns is a very ancient practice and involves announcing in church your full names and your intention to marry, and requesting anyone who knows of an impediment to the marriage to declare it.
Banns are read here at the 10.00 am service and we will let you know the dates in good time. After your forthcoming marriage is announced, the congregation is invited to pray for you both. It can be quite special and moving to hear this, so do come along if you can.
The law requires that Banns are called no sooner than three months before the wedding, on three Sundays in the parish in which you each live. This means that if either or both of you live(s) outside the parish, Banns must be called there too, even if you are on this Electoral Roll. Note that this sometimes means that Banns will need to be called in three different parishes. It’s your responsibility to arrange any calling of Banns outside this parish and we strongly recommend that you arrange it straight away. If the Banns are not called in the parishes where you live and/or the certificate is not delivered to the church where the wedding is to take place, the marriage cannot legally go ahead. You will be charged a small fee for each publication of Banns and certificate. Where applicable, please deliver the certificate to the Grayswood church office at least 3 weeks before the wedding.
Meeting the requirements for Banns?
Most couples are married in church after the calling of Banns, providing both are British nationals or nationals of EEA countries or Switzerland*. (Under the 2014 Immigration Act proof of nationality is now required. If either partner is of non-EEA origin a Superintendent Registrar's Certificate (SRC) must be obtained as Banns cannot be called).
If there is not enough notice given for the banns to be read before the marriage is due to take place, or if one or both of you are British but do not live in England (or Wales), the Common Licence procedure needs to be used rather than banns. If you think this applies to you, please ask the Parish Administrator for details.
* EEA countries are the EU countries (Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom), plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.
Preparing for marriage
As a church we are concerned that you should have all the support and preparation you need, not just for the wedding day and service, but more especially for your married life together.
There are preparation meetings with the priest which allow you to form a good, friendly relationship with the person who conducts your wedding, so that you feel they can be approached if ever you feel the need once married to chat informally with someone who will be ready to listen.
There will usually be a couple of meetings on mutually agreed days and times:
- an initial ‘getting to know you’ meeting, when we will make sure that you are thinking ahead about the various practical issues, and the meaning of Christian marriage;
- one meeting which focuses on the wedding service itself
In between these meetings, you will be expected to do a little reading and thinking and to discuss particular issues together.
When will the wedding rehearsal take place?
- Best Man;
- Ushers - at least one of them;
- Attendants: bridesmaids, matron of honour, pageboys;
- Bride’s father (or whoever is accompanying the bride down the aisle);
- Lesson reader/s.
Getting to know you
We hope that you will be able to join us for worship on at least some Sundays as you prepare for your wedding. Our main service of the day is at 10am - details are on the church notice board. Coffee is served afterwards in the Village Hall.
The Parish Office is situated inside the Church building:
All Saints Church Parish Office
Grayswood, GU27 2DJ
The Parish Administrator and the priests work part-time. The Parish Office is usually open to visitors on Monday and Thursday from 9am - 12 noon. We’ll be pleased to assist you in any way we can in the preparations for your wedding.
You might also like to explore the Church of England website Your Church Wedding which has a wealth of information.
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Choices to make your wedding unique
The church flower arrangers are able to provide arrangements at a reasonable cost; details will be available at the preliminary interview. You may prefer to choose your own florist or do it yourselves. Please inform the church office of your choice so we know what’s happening.
The wedding car/s can stop outside the church gate to deliver and collect the bridal party.
The church itself has no car park, but if you book the Village Hall you can use their car park which is opposite the church. It's possible there may be a cricket match or other event on the same day as your wedding (the bookings secretary will be able to advise you: see their website).
Wedding Receptions can be held in the Village Hall (Village Hall Website: www.grayswood.org.uk).
Hymns and Music
You will need to choose music for:
- the entry of the bride
- three hymns (usually)
- the signing of the register
- the exit of the bridal pair
Our organist is happy to discuss options with you and to assist you in your choice if you wish. We recommend you choose well known hymns so that people feel comfortable joining in. There is also a small, robed church choir, which can be augmented for the occasion. Please contact the Parish Administrator who will liaise with the Organist and Choir Mistress.
Order of Service
Most couples like to have an order of service as they provide a memento of your special day and everything in one place for the convenience of your guests. If you are on a tight budget and you choose hymns which are in our hymn books, there is however, no need to produce one. When you meet with the priest, they will give you an outline of the service so you know what you should / needn’t include. The parish office can produce an order of service for you if you wish at very reasonable cost.
A wedding service is an act of worship in the presence of God, and we ask both guests and official photographers to respect that. No photos are allowed within the service itself, except by the official photographer under strictly limited conditions. Guests are invited (if you wish) to take photos as you process down the aisle after the service.
Prior permission must be sought if you wish to video the service. One static video camera only is allowed - either at the rear of the church or unobtrusively in the side chapel. If the weather is bad on the day of your wedding, you are welcome to have your photographs taken inside the church.
If you are travelling abroad for your honeymoon, regulations require that your passport and your ticket are in the same name. If the bride wants a new passport in her new name on the wedding day, it can be obtained beforehand, provided it is applied for in good time. Appropriate forms may be obtained from the Post Office, one of which has to be signed by the person conducting the wedding.
A word about confetti ... in order to minimise the chances of littering the graves, we’d be very grateful if you’d ask your guests to throw confetti only outside the church gate, unless it’s real petals. It’s also worth encouraging them to use the bio-degradable variety.