Why hire a Wedding Celebrant?

April 16, 2023

If I had a penny (not a pound) for every time I get asked this question, I would be a very rich woman by now! So where do I start?! There are many reasons why you should hire a Wedding Celebrant that I think the question should actually be “Why didn’t you hire a Celebrant”?

 Wadhurst Castle | Photo credit: Natan Sans


 “We were always impressed with her outstanding professionalism, attention to detail, limitless compassion and patience” 

 Eser and Jordi Clopes-Masjuan 

Historically, when couples get engaged the majority think of the two traditional routes of getting married; in a church or with a Registrar (whether that’s at a Registry Office or licensed venue).

Don’t get me wrong, both of those options are lovely – in their own right – but there is the third, and wonderful choice of having a Celebrant led wedding. It’s actually called a Wedding Celebration Ceremony, because once a couple have given their notice of intent to marry, they need to complete the legal formalities at their local registry office.

Groom’s mother reading a poem ‘Marriage is Love’ by Gloria Matthew Hilary and Kevin Hogan
Groom’s mother reading a poem ‘Marriage is Love’ by Gloria Matthew Hilary and Kevin Hogan
The Savoy London – Photo credit: Sanshine Photography

If you regularly attend church then it stands to reason that you would want to get married there. But, what if your partner isn’t a church goer?

What if your partner is a different faith to you? What if you want a totally different ceremony to which the church provides? If you decide to have a Registrar marry you, do you really want, more or less (in my head I always say this in Brazilian Portuguese “mais ou menos”) to have the same generic script as every other couple with some, but not much, flexibility? Do you want someone that you have just met 15-20 minutes beforehand to marry you? The real question is what if you want a completely bespoke ceremony?

If you answered “I hadn’t thought of that or no” to most or all of those questions read on, you’ll be pleasantly surprised. 

Wedding Celebrant Jennifer Patrice at Braxted Park – Photo credit: Matt Wing Photo
Braxted Park – Photo credit: Matt Wing Photo

“Thank you so much for the beautiful ceremony…… everyone was saying how perfect it was! Honestly had the best day xx” 

Neesha and Chuks Aneke 

A Celebrant gives you the wedding ceremony you have always dreamed of, always wanted, but never knew you could have.

There’s a veritable wealth of Celebrants, all completely different from the other, apart from the fact that we all do one thing. We all tell a story. We all tell your personal story. We take your relationship history and transform it into your ceremony. 

Wedding Celebrant Jennifer Patrice at Convocation House, Bodleian Library – Photo credit: MT Studio
Convocation House, Bodleian Library – Photo credit: MT Studio

First, however, you have to find a Celebrant that’s right for you and that you click with.

At this point some of the lyrics of ‘Getting to Know You’ sung by Dame Julie Andrews in ‘The King and I’ come to mind: 

“Getting to know you
Getting to know all about you
Getting to like you, getting to hope you like me 
Getting to know you
Putting it my way
But nicely
You are precisely
My cup of tea” 

There are 2 Types of Wedding Celebrant:


DOES NOT include religion in a ceremony


DOES or DOESN’T include religion, all depending on what you would like.
I’m an Independent

Once you have decided on what kind of ceremony you would like, done your research on Wedding Celebrants and carried out some preliminary interviews, you make a connection and decide who you are going to book. 

Booking your Wedding Celebrant can happen any time from three months to three years before your ceremony. Although, when I was booked to appear on Don’t Tell the Bride, I received the phone call on the Friday afternoon (when I was on my way to a meeting at The Savoy) and the wedding was on the Sunday. Once booked we begin to build a relationship and a rapport straight away. We become friends who hold your hand and support you over that time, to inevitably, write the perfect bespoke script which when you and your loved ones hear it will instantly recognise your story – the story that is unique to you. 

Wedding Celebrant Jennifer Patrice The London Eye - Photo credit: Sue Jordan for Keeneye Photography
The London Eye – Photo credit: Sue Jordan for Keeneye Photography

A Wedding Celebration Ceremony can have all the traditional elements e.g. a bridal party, the father or mother walking the bride or groom up the aisle, vows, ring exchange readings/poems, signing of a certificate. But, most importantly, as well as your story, woven into your script is family, friends and a little bit of theatre. This can include something like a sand pouring, a ring warming, a unity candle or even a wine blending or cocktail mixing. 

Wine Blending Ceremony, Oastbrook Weddings. Photo credit: Chris Barber Photography
Wine Blending Ceremony, Oastbrook Weddings | Oastbrook Vineyard – Photo credit: Chris Barber Photography

The other added benefit is that a ceremony which is conducted by a Wedding Celebrant can be, but does not have to be, in a licensed room.

Unlike Registrars we, Celebrants, can conduct Wedding Celebration Ceremonies anywhere, with no time restrictions. For me, at least, there is no such thing as running late as I never book more than one ceremony a day. I always tell my couple not rush, this is your moment, savour and enjoy it. Whether that’s on a pristine white beach, in a lush green vineyard, an iconic landmark in London, or the castle which was the location for The Crown; but why stop there? Why not on a cliff edge (elements permitting), or the top of a building overlooking your favourite city, or, when we can travel and survive there, space! 

Destination Wedding Celebrant Jennifer Patrice at Blea Tarn, Lake District – Photo credit: Emily Black Photography
Blea Tarn, Lake District – Photo credit: Emily Black Photography

Let your imagination run wild.

To quote Albert Einstein “Imagination is everything, it’s the preview of life’s coming attractions”. It is, after all, your wedding day. One of life’s important moments! So with the vision of your ceremony in your heart, the one you have always wanted but never knew you could have, why would you not hire a Wedding Celebrant? 

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