Do you have a rehearsal for a civil ceremony?

Hi, Just after some advice, I'm sure lots of people must know the answer to this...

We're having a civil ceremony in August (not in a registry office). I know for weddings you have a rehearsal of the ceremony in the church (I did this as a bridesmaid once) so you know where to stand, what happens etc. basically a run through of the stages of the ceremony itself

Question is is this the norm for a civil ceremony? I'm having bridesmaids, walking down the aisle etc so it will be very 'weddingy' and I'm starting to think how will we all know what to do on the day and where to stand etc during the ceremony...The registrar costs are pretty high (I think over £400 in total). I know we have to meet them beforehand to get the details of our vows, music etc agreed but thats at the council offices I believe...

So do we get a chance to rehearse? Or shall I just work something out with the venue, plan what i want everyone to do/where to stand and then just tell the registrar?

Thanks image


  • no rehearsal - I am quite worried about this actually!

    about 2 months before wedding day you go to the registrar for a meeting and yu provide all the details, who walks in with who, music & readings etc.

    My brothers are ushers so I will make sure they get everyone to stand where they are meant to- prompted by my best girl.Best man makes sure h2b is standing where he is meant to and I walk in with my dad and then we choose if we are standing or sitting, say vows sign register and hey presto youre married! So thats the plan anyway! :-S

  • We didn't have a rehearsal for our civil ceremony but I really wouldn't worry about it.

    We had our meeting with the registrar prior to the ceremony and she talked us through everything. She told us not to worry about anything as she would guide us through it on the day (and she did).

    When we had our final meeting at the venue (a hotel) they went through everything with us so that they knew exactly how we were expecting things to run and so that we knew exactly what to expect.

    I made sure the bridesmaids knew where they had to walk and where they were going to sit and likewise for the best man.

    The registrar was FAB and she guided us through everything on the day. She spoke to the witnesses (best man and hubby's sis) before the ceremony to make sure they were clear on what they'd need to do.

    Everyone was happy that they knew what to do. I think part of the reason you don't have a rehearsal with a civil ceremony as that it's so much more laid back than a church service. We were basically just told to do whatever we felt comfortable with (eg kiss when we met at the front, hold hands during, etc), whereas the chuch services I've been to have been much more rigid.

    Everything will run smoothly! The people you'll be working with are absolute professionals and will make you feel completely at ease!

  • I am also a little anxious about this - hope it doesn't all end up being clumsey! Maybe we should have a mock up at home before hand just so everyone knows where they're going!
  • Ditto to Mrs A's post.

    It will all go smoothly.

  • We had a rehearsal for our wedding and it was a real help.

    We met with the registrar a few days before the wedding and she ran through everything in detail for us and reassured us that she would speak to everyone on the day to make sure they were happy with what they were doing.

    The manager of the venue was happy for us to have a rehearsal the evening before the wedding so we gathered the best man, bridesmaids, FOB, usher, witnesses and the people doing the readings together. The manager ran through how everyone would be seated, how we would go in (it was a country house hotel so there were several entrances and exits) and which room we would go into afterwards - which was dependent on the weather. I then ran through what order everything would happen in, so the people doing the readings particularly would know when they had to get up.

    It was the first time that most of us had been bride/groom/bridesmaids/best man etc so we found it really good at settling nerves and then we all went off to the pub to relax and meet up with the guests who were starting to arrive from all over the country,

    I would definitely recommend it if there are any first timers in the wedding party who might be getting nervous or who haven't had a chance to meet the other people involved - our best man was working abroad and only arrived back in the UK that day. Plus it did make a good start to the weekend's festivities.
  • kateherdkateherd Posts: 125
    Thanks, your replies do put my mind at rest....Fingers crossed our venue is going to be free the day before (no other weddings/conferences/events) as I would really like to go and decorate the place then rather than leave it to someone else the next morning...if if is I think I'll get everyone together to do a sneaky run through (just of things like where the bridesmaids will stand/sit)

    Thanks!! xx seems I can find the answer to everything on here!

    Ok here is one other quick question...I'm not really sure why but I would much rather a man do the marraige ceremony than a woman . Nothing sexist just a preference for the feeling, photos etc that I can't explain. I mentioned it in passing when we went to give notice to find one woman VERY stroppy about this...has anyone else been able to opt for a preference of registrars? (we fall into the Hertfordshire offices because of our venue location)

  • kathrynoukkathrynouk Posts: 2,250
    kte- i would have prefered a man as well- again I don't know why but the Lady that is sorting our wedding for us was so nice and reassuring that it didn't matter in the slightly in the end.

    She went through the whole ceremony and I know what is happening and even drew a pic for me
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