HomeWho we areWhat's onServicesThe ChurchYouth

Information for your Wedding

Note if you want to get married in St. Mary's or you wish to have a Service of Blessing, you should first contact the Rector


Full text of a typical Church of England marriage service.

Planning your wedding and want ideas? check out the Church of England's wedding site


There is a non-refundable deposit of £50 to ensure your wedding date is held and is payable when the booking is taken - this deposit will count towards the final fee for your wedding. Below are the fees for the current year.

Wedding Fees 2019

Marriage Service: £455.00
Publication of banns of marriage: £30.00
Certificate of banns, if required : £14.00
Marriage Certificate (original) : £4.00
Marriage Certificate (further copies) : £14.00

Verger and Sound System: £50.00

Choir (doubled if video used): £100.00

Organist (doubled if video used): £95.00
(Fees may vary according to the music requested, the timing of the service and the availability of organists to play.

Bells: £90 (weekends), £120 (weekdays) average of 6 Bellringers for a Wedding

Flowers: £50.00 (basic charge for church expenses whatever option of flower arranging is used)
The church flower arrrangers would be pleased to undertake commissons for purchasing and arranging flowers for weddings.
For more details please contact Liz Moynihan 01462 742363.

Heating (if needed): £50.00


Wedding: inc choir, organ, bells,
flowers, no video,
no heating
Marriage Service: £455.00
Publication of Banns: £30.00
Verger & Sound: £50.00
Choir: £100.00
Organ:£ 95.00
Bells: £90.00 (weekend)
Basic Flower charge for church expenses: £50.00
Marriage Certificate: £4.00
Total: £ 874.00

Wedding: organ and Flowers no video, no heating

Marriage Service: £455.00
Publication of Banns: £30.00
Verger & Sound: £50.00
Organ: £95.00
Basic Flower charge for church expenses: £50.00
Marriage Certificate: £4.00
Total: £ 684.00

Wedding: inc choir, organ, bells, flowers, Video - no heating
Marriage Service 455.00
Publication of Banns 30.00
Verger & Sound 50.00
Choir 200.00
Organ 190.00
Bells 90.00 (weekend)
Basic Flower charge for church expenses 50.00
Marriage Certificate 4.00
Total: £ 1069.00
Wedding: no Organ, no choir
no bells, no heating
no flowers

Marriage Service 455.00
Publication of Banns 30.00
Verger & Sound 50.00
Marriage Certificate 4.00
Total: £ 539.00

Searches in Registers, etc.

For the first hour (inclusive of one copy of an entry in certain registers): £30.00

For each subsequent hour or part of an hour: £30.00

Additional copies of entries: £14.00

Please make cheques payable to Ashwell PCC


Note if you want to get married in St. Mary's you should first contact the Rector.

Guidelines for couples getting married at St.Mary's

The following guidelines are for those who would like to get married in the Parish church of St Mary's Ashwell. Planning your wedding and ensuring everything goes 'right' for the day is a very complex and often stressful experience for many couples, however you can alleviate much of this by understanding and following these basic guidelines and discussing things.

Can I get married in your church?

Under the new measure that started on 1st October 2008, you can get married in St Mary's if:
Either or Both of you ...
... live in the parish (check website map for parish boundary).
... are currently on the Church's Electoral Roll.
... were baptised in the parish.
... had your confirmation entered in our church register book.
... previously lived in the parish for at least 6 months.
... previously habitually attended public worship in St Mary's for at least 6 months.
... have a parent who during your lifetime lived in the parish for at least 6 months.
... have a parent who has habitually attended public worship in St Mary's for at least 6 months.
... have a parent or Grandparent who was married in the parish.
All of the above criteria need to be demonstrable at the point of booking your marriage.


All bookings for weddings are done through the Rector. You will need to initially meet to discuss your plans and fill in your application form. A deposit of £50 is required to secure your date and time and it is a good principle to arrange this initial meeting before committing to a date with your reception venue. No date can be held without the booking fee, and you should be aware that St. Mary's is a vibrant church which often has concerts and events at weekends that may negate your wedding taking place. All bookings are on a first come basis. The fee is non-refundable but it does form part of the final cost of your wedding.

Legal details

Your wedding at St Mary's is recognised in law, so it is your responsibility to ensure that all details you give on the application form are correct. Mistakes cannot be easily corrected after the event and you will need to have two witnesses for the signing of the registers.


Normally during the service there is at least one reading from the bible, and you will probably want to have other readings and poems that fit your wedding theme. I will be happy to discuss selection of suitable readings, and there are many websites which have plenty of content.


Choir: We have a very good choir, under the leadership of Judy Catterick. Our choir will not only able to help you with singing the hymns but can also provide an anthem during the signing of the registers from their wide repertoire.

Organist: Our organists are happy to play the full breadth of hymns and anthems together with the usual selection of music for entrance of the bride and your exit at the end of the service. It is important to discuss your choice with them, especially if you require something a little out of the ordinary, and in such cases the organist may charge an extra £50 for additional practice time if such a piece of music is not in their normal repertoire.

For both Choir and Organist we must have details of music at least two weeks before the service. 


We are delighted that you will be married at St Mary's and wish you well with all your preparations.

There is a dedicated and experienced team of flower arrangers who decorate the church week by week and who also create arrangements for special occasions such as Easter and Christmas.

Options for Wedding Flowers are:

(Please note that in all options the basic charge of £50 for church expenses would be paid separately see examples above)

1. Flowers to be arranged by family and friends.

2. Flowers to be arranged by professional florist.

3. Flowers to be arranged by Church Flower Arrangers.

In each case contact needs to be made with the Church Flower Organiser as soon as possible. Should you be planning either option 1 or option 2, it will be very helpful to discuss practical matters such as possible use of church stands, containers, watering and position of arrangements etc. In the case of option 3 a longer discussion about flowers and colours etc is suggested.

If the Church Flower team arrange the flowers, the cost is likely to be about a third of the cost of a professional arranger. The exact cost can only be agreed after discussion and depends on whether more exotic (expensive) flowers are chosen. We ask for a deposit four weeks before the wedding to cover the cost of ordering the flowers. Any profit made goes to the Church Flower Fund to help to buy flowers for special festivals such as Easter and Christmas.

During the discussion, any ideas for decorations, whether traditional or modern, and positions of arrangements can be agreed. Colours are most important, and a sample of dresses or ribbons helps in the colour choice.

Arrangements can be taken away if necessary to decorate the reception venue, but it is requested that the altar arrangement is left in place.

To make an appointment please contact: Liz Moynihan (01462 742363) - Church Flower Organiser


We have six bells in our church and you can choose to have them rung for your service. You will be asked if you would like these as you fill in the application form.


Bio-degradable confetti is allowed in the churchyard, and through experience, your best photos of confetti can be taken down by the lych-gate after the main set photos have been taken.


You may like to consider friends or family adding something 'extra' to the service, such as solo instrumentals, music pieces, addresses etc. There is plenty of scope to include these during your service, and you should discuss your ideas with me.

Service words & Vows

The order of service has to follow the order of the Church of England's services. Most couples choose the modern vows which are at the heart of the modern Church of England service. If however you would like to use the 1662 version of these then we can discuss your reasoning and style. A link to the full text of the service can be found on our website.


Most couples give and receive rings; however it may be that you only wish to use one ring, or even no rings. This can be discussed.


The current fees for our wedding services are published above. The final payment must be settled at least seven days before the wedding. If you need clarification of the final amount, don't hesitate to ask.


It is a good idea to have a rehearsal the evening before the wedding when all who will be attending can have a 'dry run' though the service. You will need to book a time with me for this to take place.


A 'normal' church service will take anything from 25mins to 45mins depending on the scope of readings and 'extras' you include. The service should start on time. (The 'tradition' that the bride is always 5 minutes late is because she arrives on time, and then the photographer makes her 5 minutes late.) As organist, choir and bell-ringers are all volunteers it must be pointed out that after 20 minutes we can't guarantee that they will be able to stay, and no refunds will be given.

Printed service books

Most couples like to print their own service books to include main headings, music, words of hymns and details of readings. You should include the words "Hymns reproduced under CCL 279050" in small letters somewhere on your service book so that you are covered by our church's music copyright licence for the reproduction of the words.

Photographers / Video

St Mary's is a wonderful church to have your photos and most photographers choose not to use flash during the service. If you would like to allow members of the congregation to take flash photographs during the service, please let me know, as normally I request them not to do so at the start of the service as they can prove distracting. If you choose to have a video, either professional or amateur, you must let us know as this affects the fees payable to the choir and organist under issues of performing rights.


If you satisfy one of the criteria for the 'Can I get married in your church' section then you will be married under the ancient system of Banns. We will automatically call your banns during our main 10:45 service on the first three Sundays of the month preceding your wedding. You need to ensure you have your banns called in the parish church of the parish where you reside. After they have been called, and there are no objections, you then pick up a certificate from your local church and present it to myself. Without this certificate, I am unable to perform the marriage.


There are a lot of things to synchronise before the 'big day' and it helps to spread these out, however there are a few important deadlines that must be met: Except where indicated, these can all be done through myself and I will let you know if you need to enquire further.

1 month before the wedding:

  • Finalise the order of service and agree on draft service book.
  • Agree on music, and details of any special arrangements/requirements.
  • Agree details of flowers with Liz

2 weeks before the wedding.

  • Finalise music requirements.

7 days before

  • Pay final payment.
  • Give your Banns certificate to the Priest who will take the wedding service (if applicable).

An agreed day before the wedding

  • Rehearsal in church.

In addition to this we will almost certainly arrange several meetings between us before the final month to get to know each other, to plan the 'shape' of the day, and for me to offer any additional guidance to make your day perfect.

Please click on the link if you would like to download an Application of Marriage form.