May 2013 | Ideal Bride Magazine
Are you dreaming of a white wedding in Church? Couples looking to marry in a Church in 2013 can expect to pay around £1000 or more after the Church of England announced an increase in its fees.
With a 40 per cent increase in the fees paid to the Church, brides and grooms will face a bill of £415 just for staging the ceremony. This price does not cover the full costs of the Church, a further fee for the services of the verger and another bill for heating the Church will come as extra. The increase of just over 40 per cent is nearly 10 times the current rate of inflation according to the Consumer Prices Index, the measure favoured by the Treasury.
Brides that opt for an organist, a choir, bell ringers and flowers can expect the price of her church ceremony to top the £1,000 mark. The new fees were set in the wake of the first increase in numbers of church weddings in eight years. White church weddings went up by four per cent, according to recent figures, after new rules allowed more couples to marry in a church of their choice rather than their closest parish church.
The fee for a wedding will go up from £296 to £415, a price which includes the reading of the banns for three Sundays in advance of the ceremony and a certificate to show the banns have been read. The £415 includes the time of clergy, prices at £22.75 an hour, and a further £32.75 an hour for use of church buildings.
A new fee system to cover weddings and funerals was designed last year, after lawyers discovered a glitch in ecclesiastical wedding law which meant the Church needed to pass new regulations through parliament, the new fee system has been approved at Westminster.
The price increase comes at a time when numbers of weddings in the country are at a historic low. Church weddings dropped to just 56,700 in 2009 as many couples chose the alternative of a civil ceremony in approved venues such as stately homes and hotels.
2010 saw an increase in numbers to 58,700 as the reforms which allowed couples a much wider choice of churches took effect. It is expected that the recent rise in costs will make Church weddings the less affordable and favourable choice with brides and grooms.
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