Choose readings from your favourite books, poems that offer guidance, songs that you’ll never forget and personal promises that will last a lifetime. If you would like to write a piece about yourselves as a couple, your journey to this point or tell us about an experience you have shared together, then the registrar will be more than happy to include this for you.

Please note that the following suggestions are only for licensed venue ceremonies. For Register Office ceremonies, please contact us for advice on how you can personalise your ceremony.

Legal Vows and Promises

Choosing your vows

Lawfully, there are only two places in the ceremony where specific wording must be used:

  • During the declaration
  • During the contractual vows

However, it is still possible to choose from three legal options, which we show you in your Ceremony Pack.

Renewal of Vows

Listen to one of our couples read a personal and emotional reflection on their marriage during their Renewal of vows ceremony at our beautiful Hexham House.

Exchanging of rings

We offer a choice of five ring vows, which will be shown in your Ceremony Pack. However, we also invite you to write your own personal ring exchange words. If you’re ceremony is in one of our animal friendly venues – you could have your pet dog or even an owl as your ring bearer. We truly believe it is your day, your way!


Personal promises

Personal promises are a great way to incorporate values and vows that have particular significance to you as a couple. Your ceremony pack also contains several options, but we are more than happy for you to write your own.

Please note that no wording may be used from any religious ceremony.

In this video you can see how writing your own personal promises can be a wonderful touch to your ceremony…


Ceremony Personal Touches

The Rose Ceremony

This is a simple yet moving ceremony where the couple exchange two roses symbolising the giving and receiving of their love for each other. The roses can be given to the couple by members of their family, friends or even the Registrar.

An example of the wording can be found using google to search for “Rose ceremonies for a Civil Ceremony”, however the wording can be tailored by you for a more personal touch.

Watch one version of a real Rose Ceremony here:

The Hand Ceremony

A lovely time to include a hand ceremony is just after you have exchanged wedding rings, while you remain holding hands the registrar, or a guest of your choice can read the words of the hand ceremony. Here is an example of a hand ceremony at one of our weddings…

A Unity Candle Ceremony

A candle is a powerful symbol of love and light and as such can be used in a number of ways as part of this ceremony. Whether you are celebrating the unity of two families, or just the union of you as a couple, we can work with you to create a format that is personal and meaningful.

For example, the Registrar can invite two family members to light a candle, representing each of your families. Using these two candles, the couple then light a central candle which represents their union and that of their families.

An example of the wording can be found by using google to search for “Unity candle ceremonies for a Civil Ceremony”, however the wording can be tailored by you for a more personal touch.

A Memory Candle Ceremony

A memory candle can be lit to remember the loved ones who can’t be with you on your day, you can decide where to include this in your ceremony and the choice of wording that we use. If you are unsure we can provide you with some lovely examples, it can make a very special moment for you as it did for our couple, Jaz and Andrew, in this video.

The Sand Ceremony

This very ancient ceremony is similar to the candle ceremony, but has the advantage of leaving a permanent memento for the couple on their special day.

In this ritual, the couple pour two different coloured sands into one special container. The flowing of the sand and the blending of the colours symbolise the joining of two lives, representing everything the couple have been, or will become, in the future.

An example of the wording can be found by using google to search for “Sand ceremonies for a Civil Ceremony”, however the wording can be tailored by you for a more personal touch.



​Music is one of the best ways to bring your ceremony to life and can be incorporated in a number of different ways.

There are four key points throughout the ceremony where music could be used:

  • As your guests are assembling.
  • Your entrance.
  • During the signing of the register and photographs.
  • Your exit.

You are very welcome to have a live performance as part of the ceremony itself in place of a reading, be it instrumental, vocal or a guest sing along!



​Whether a reading is humorous, serious, poetic or classic, it will always add something personal to your ceremony and is a lovely way to involve your family or friends.

Examples of readings can be found by using google to search for “Reading for a Civil Ceremonies”, however readings can be tailored by you for a more personal touch.

Watch a heartfelt reading delivered by father of the groom here:

Watch this super sweet reading from the daughter of one of our happy couples below

Themed weddings

​We encourage all unique and personal approaches to your special day and themed weddings are a great way to do this. We may even be able to join in with your theme, just ask!

If you would like to discuss your ideas for a themed ceremony call our Ceremony Coordination Team on 01665 602870.