Marrying in the Woodford Valley
Our parish has within it the three wonderful church buildings of All Saints Middle Woodford, St Andrew’s Great Durnford and St Michael’s Wilsford, each uniquely beautiful and each able to offer the setting for a wonderful country church wedding. Whether that is to be in the height of summer or on a frosty day around Christmas we aim to help you have the wedding day you have dreamt of and help you look forward to many years of happy marriage together. Mike, the Vicar, has over twenty years’ experience of conducting marriages and he will be literally at your service every step of the way.
Who can be married in the parish?
In order to be able to be legally married in the parish you need to establish what is called ‘a qualifying connection’ and these are set down in law. Some may be obvious such as living in the parish (which includes the Archers and Kings Gate estates - see this map for full details) or having been christened in the parish. Some are less so, for example you can marry in the church where your parents or grandparents were married. A full list of these qualifying connections, is given in the footnote below and if you are in any doubt do contact Mike, the Vicar. If we cannot establish one of these it is still possible by coming to worship with us at least once a month over six months or, if there are good pastoral reasons by applying for an Archbishop’s Licence. There are some other legal restrictions relating to age and relatedness but do note that you do not need to have been Christened (baptised) to be married in church.
Marriage after Divorce
We regularly conduct marriages of people who have been divorced. In these cases we would want first sensitively to explore with you the previous relationship and how that has been resolved. .
Mixed Faith Couples
People of other religious faiths can legally marry in church and therefore we can conduct the marriage of mixed faith couples.
Same Sex Marriage
At the current time we cannot legally conduct same sex marriages. We would however want to affirm the value of the love between same sex partners.
The cost of marrying in a Church of England church is set nationally, and currently is a total of £539. Fees increase year on year, but the church is deliberately keeping the increase below inflation.
The Next Step
If you would like to find out more the next step is to give Mike, the Vicar, a ring on
01722 782 310 and he can arrange with you a meeting with you.
A recent wedding at St Andrew's, Great Durnford
Footnote: Qualifying Connections, taken from the 2008 Marriage Measure.
For the purposes of this section a person has a qualifying connection with a parish in which the marriage is to be solemnized if—
(a) that person was baptised in that parish (unless the baptism took place in a combined rite which included baptism and confirmation) or is a person whose confirmation has been entered in the register book of confirmation for any church or chapel in that parish;
(b) that person has at any time had his or her usual place of residence in that parish for a period of not less than six months;
(c) that person has at any time habitually attended public worship in that parish for a period of not less than six months;
(d) a parent of that person has during the lifetime of that person had his or her usual place of residence in that parish for a period of not less than six months or habitually attended public worship in that parish for that period; or
(e) a parent or grandparent of that person has been married in that parish.
For the purpose of (d) or (e) above “parent” includes an adoptive parent and any other person who has undertaken the care and upbringing of the person seeking to establish a qualifying connection and “grandparent” shall be construed accordingly.