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Small Weddings are Back in the UK: How to Enjoy Your Perfectly Formed (Smaller) Celebration

Small Weddings

Since the UK lockdown in March 2020 the event industry has been closed. We’ve had no real idea when it could get back to normal… or even the ‘new normal’ that keeps being spoken about!

Events were a clear risk at the beginning of the UK Coronavirus breakout, and it was understandable that we all retreated and took time to help slow the spread of the virus and protect the NHS.

But as the UK lockdown as been slowly lifted, Wales, Northern Ireland and now England have had their wedding ban lifted, leaving us open to some new wedding options for our couples and, more specifically, small weddings.

It seems that larger family gatherings are still something in the distant future, but on June 23rd though we finally heard some positive news that we (in the events and wedding sector) had been waiting for:

“Weddings will restart from July 4, with up to 30 people able to attend ceremonies under social distancing rules.

However, at present only two households will be permitted to attend a wedding reception held at an indoor hospitality venue afterwards.

The changes coincide with the reopening of churches and religious places of worship, which will be required to observe new social distancing guidance including limits on singing and hymns.” – The Telegraph

So, for now, it’s clear that small weddings in the UK are the way forward.

Planning to get married in 2020 or just looking to have a smaller wedding party? It’s not good news (especially for the struggling events industry). Small celebrations haven’t made the cut just yet. Along with a vast list of things you can and can’t do at a smaller wedding, the celebrations after are a no no… for now.

Here’s the latest news on weddings.

But we’re optimistic that we’ll soon be able to celebrate, but also conscious that this will be a gradual transition and that’s very likely to mean smaller gatherings to start with.

Can’t wait for the time when we can have big gathering again? Here are the advantages of holding a small, intimate marriage celebration.


Small Weddings are more cost-effective

Smaller weddings can certainly cost you a lot less and if you were struggling on budget at the beginning of your wedding planning journey, then the good news is that now you have more to play with (hopefully).

A smaller wedding means less food, fewer tables and chairs, smaller venues, and less spacious marquees. Even after lockdown is totally lifted, a small wedding will really help your wedding budget per head. 


Small weddings allow you to be more lavish!

Got a budget for 100 that can only be spent on 30 according the June 2020 guidelines? Well why not use it all on the 30 and give them three times the celebration? 

Now you could have better reception drinks as you’ll need fewer bottles of champagne, you can opt for that dream wedding cake as you’ll have fewer people to serve, and you could also go for a more upmarket venue for the same cost as that large, less luxury one. You can find small wedding ideas and inspiration with our articles on wedding equipment hireplanning wedding foodplanning wedding drinks, and wedding entertainment.


Small weddings can mean small, boutique venues

Your choice of venues changes when you have fewer people to invite is immense. Certainly, when you look to large Indian weddings that usually reach the dizzy heights of 3-400, the venue capacity limitations often rule out many choices. Outdoor weddings are also proving to be popular allowing for safe social distancing outdoors and with beautiful views.


Small weddings allow for more options

The more guests you have, the more you have to organise, and (as we mentioned above) the fewer choices you have with venues, entertainment, churches, and more.

When you work with a small wedding party, you’re suddenly met with more exciting small wedding ideas that might make you feel a little better about saying goodbye to the larger gathering that you had in mind. If you have anxiety about large gatherings or you’re naturally introverted, then maybe a small wedding is exactly what you need to feel more comfortable.


Less stressful organisation

Two heads are better than one, but 100 heads are more work than 30! The simple fact is organising a wedding can be stressful! Good news: whether it's planning catering for your wedding venue, booking wedding entertainment or wedding equipment hire, a small wedding reduces the stress a little.

Now you don’t have to choose between second cousins and great aunts, you don’t have as many food allergies to deal with, and you’re less likely to have an eclectic mix of people who don’t quite mix! Smaller really can be more perfectly formed! Check out our handy event planning checklist.


More time with your guests

One of the things we often hear from our couples is that the day was incredible, but it went so fast! “We didn’t get to speak to everyone” is a common comment we hear. So… now you can! What couple can’t speak to 30 people over the course of a day? At a smaller, more intimate wedding it’s far easier to socialise with all your guests.


Small weddings can be more relaxed

More guests, more problems? Well, sometimes – yes! Weddings are a masterpiece in organisation and if you’re not careful, a large event can run away with you. The timings of your event can easily slip and the more guests you have, the more chances you have that you’ll fall behind with essential timings like the wedding breakfast, first dance, cake cutting, and more…

A small wedding day schedule can be far more relaxed as you’ll have more flexibility and room for things to go over. Serving food to 100 takes a lot longer than 30 and getting 30 people from a church to your wedding breakfast is far easier than 130! 


You can have a wedding reception at home

Of course, now you’re only looking at a small number of guests you could have the party at home. Depending on your garden size, you could have a marquee in the garden, or even a long table in the house.

100 people in one house might be best left for the mansion owners amongst you, but a small post-lockdown wedding of 30 is more well-suited to a home wedding for sure.


Need help planning your wedding catering hire?

For over 20 years we’ve been kitting out dinner parties to grand ceremonies with our event hire services.

If you need help planning or re-planning your large or small wedding post-lockdown then please do contact us now. We’d love to talk to you!

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