Ettiquette

Here I have given a small guide on the commonly used etiquette for weddings. Rules are always there to be broken to suit individual customer requirements, but these are how a traditional English wedding would run.

Church or Civil Ceremony
The custom when viewed from the back of the church or civil ceremony room is for the Bridegrooms family and friends to be on the right hand side, and the Brides family and friends on the left side.

Since medieval times, couples can only marry in the UK between 8am and 6pm, these being the normal daylight hours. This was so that the Bridegroom can see who he is marrying.

When entering the ceremony the Brides escort, usually a father, or relative would be on the Bride’s left side, except in some catholic weddings where the Brides escort is on the Brides right until she is handed over to the Bridegroom.

If a Bride is wearing a veil, this should be lifted as she reaches the front, so the Bridegroom can see he is marrying the right person.

The positions to the front looking from left to right would be:

Bridesmaids, Escort, Bride, Bridegroom, Best man or men if there is more than one Best Man.

The law in the UK is that the wedding must be witnessed by 2 people over the age of 16.

When walking “down the aisle”, the Bridegroom is on the Brides right, leaving his sword hand free to fend off any would be attackers (handed down from middle ages).

Photography
The usual pose is Bridegroom on Brides right, except for some reason in the Durham area every photographer puts the Bridegroom on the Brides left.

Receiving Line
If there is to be an official receiving line the accepted order is:-

Brides Mother, Bridegrooms Father, Bridegrooms Mother, Brides Father, Bride, Bridegroom Best Man and any Bridesmaids.

Entrance into Breakfast Room
All guests stand and applaud while couple walk to their seats and sit down, then everyone sits down.

Bride and Bridegroom are served first whether it is waiter service or Buffet style food.

Speeches
The traditional format for the official speeches is:-

- Brides escort (father, brother, relative or friend) who makes a toast to the couple

- Bridegroom who makes a toast to the bridesmaids

- Best Man who toasts the parents of the couple

Seating for top table (looking from the guests)
Bridesmaid, Maid of Honour, Grooms Father, Brides Mother, Groom, Bride, Brides Father, Grooms Mother, Best Man, Bridesmaid

Eating – Knives and Forks
Start from the outside working in towards the middle.