Outdoor weddings now allowed permanently

18th March 2022

Legislation to allow civil marriages and civil partnerships to take place in outdoor areas on licensed premises permanently has been approved and comes into effect in April.

This continues the measures introduced during the pandemic to allow greater flexibility to operators to be able to provide more choice to couples for their special day.

Following consultation, 96% of respondents supported these changes.

Historically, civil ceremonies taking place at a licensed venue had to take place indoors or within a permanent structure within the grounds.

Many venues have beautiful grounds outside their premises and operators have wanted to use these spaces for a long time to be able to enhance the packages they can offer.

The changes only apply to approved premises, with the amendments to The Marriages and Civil Partnerships (Approved Premises) (Amendment) Regulations 2022 coming into force on 6 April 2022.

The changes will offer couples more choice and provide a welcome boost for all those involved in the wedding sector.

Further changes are expected during the summer following an ongoing Law Commission report seeking to modernise marriage laws. This will include the possibility of adding more locations to the list of premises. The government will also look to legalise religious outdoor weddings in due course; however, changes to primary legislation would be required to enable this.

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