UK Destination Weddings

Since legislation changed it has become more difficult for overseas couple to spend the necessary 28 days in the UK in order to qualify to be married in this country (please see gov.uk/marriages and civil partnerships for foreign nationals for more information on current legislation), and so more and more couples are choosing to undertake the brief, rubber-stamped legal formalities in their own country, before travelling to the UK for a celebration with friends and family.

At least half of Diana's bookings over the years have been for Destination Weddings and clients have travelled from the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, Qatar, France, South Africa and Hong Kong, all choosing to have a bespoke Wedding Blessing ceremony written and conducted by Diana.

With so many beautiful, quintessentially English venues with magnificent gardens and outdoor spaces, it is understandable that overseas couples should want to choose a traditional English setting for their public wedding ceremony with family and friends.

Some couples have explored all the possibilities in their own country, and throughout Europe, and have felt they would have better service and value for money in the UK. They were impressed with the attention to detail and customer care offered at UK venues, and interestingly, they were attracted to having a venue for exclusive use as it enabled them to spend quality time with the family and friends who had flown from overseas with them to attend their wedding ceremony.

Despite the British reputation for weather, many couples wish to have an outdoor ceremony when they book their destination wedding in the UK. In Diana’s experience, all the outdoor ceremonies booked with her have, with a little patience and trust, successfully been held in their desired location, even when storm clouds have gathered overhead only moments before – although this of course cannot be guaranteed and venues usually offer a wet-weather alternative!

An advantage to choosing a destination wedding in the UK is the desire for an intimate wedding with close friends and family: if the wedding is held in their own country, the couple would have a far bigger celebration than they really wanted and would feel obliged to invite work colleagues and acquaintances so as not to offend anyone.
A wedding in the UK can become an opportunity to travel in both Great Britain and Europe. The family and guests can take time to travel around the area before the ceremony, and take part in pre-wedding photography shoots, making the best use of their time in a foreign country and taking advantage of top quality photographers.

With a diversity of venues from castles, to country houses and estates, beach fronted venues and converted barns, historical homes and palaces, and a country steeped in history, the appeal of a UK wedding is understandable.

Diana uses Skype to bridge the distance with her overseas clients, from the first consultation through to the finalising of their personalised script. Often just hearing a perfectly spoken, friendly and professional English voice can be sufficient to ensure a booking, other times it will be Diana's experience and knowledge of wedding etiquette and procedure, together with her enviable connections with exclusive venues, national wedding planners and suppliers which draws clients to her.

Although clients choose the UK for many reasons and particularly appreciate an archetypal British wedding, many also wish to incorporate some links to their own country and heritage, and Diana is more than happy to research and include references and rituals from anywhere in the world, from a Japanese tea ceremony to a Celtic handfasting to a Sikh flower garland exchange.

For a list of some of the UK venues Diana recommends, please see her page of Valued and Trusted Suppliers.

"Many thanks indeed for helping us make our wedding celebration so special, personal and meaningful. Arranging a wedding from afar can be challenging, and it gave us great comfort to be working with someone so professional, experienced and committed to their work as you. Many of our guests commented on the moving ceremony, and for Tony and I, it was really, genuinely, the best part of the day. Thank you for being part of that."

 

"Some people are very lucky to be both great at what they do, and happy doing it. You very much gave us the impression of both, and we hope you continue to help other couples stop, pause and realise the importance and beauty of their commitment. With thanks and kind regards"

Helen and Tony, Hong Kong