Celebrant or Registrar – What’s The Difference?

Unless you’re in the wedding industry you might not know the difference between a celebrant and a registrar. Today it’s my great pleasure to hand over to Tori Bond, a Sussex based celebrant. She will explain the difference between the two which will help you to make your choice for your own celebrations.

Tori Bond Celebrant
Photo credit – https://cole-youngphotography.com/

Who will conduct your ceremony?

Your wedding day is imminent. Do you feel stressed about all the organising you have to do? Who will conduct the most important ceremony of your life? Choosing the right person for your wedding is so important to making your day as special as it can be.

Celebrant or Registrar?

Many people ask me what the difference is between a registrar and a celebrant? A registrar usually conducts a non-religious legal marriage ceremony and is often employed by the council. A celebrant will also conduct a non-religious ceremony, but cannot perform the legal aspects of your wedding.

Then Why a Celebrant?

Because celebrants are not employed by the council, come from all walks of life, and have plenty of time to give. Celebrants are not bound by time restraints. They don’t have to rush off to another wedding or be elsewhere. The best thing about a celebrant is their complete commitment and devotion to your day.

A good celebrant will do just one wedding on that day, devoting their time to the chosen couple. With a celebrant, you can choose exactly how you want the ceremony to be, what readings and music you want, down to the finest detail. The wedding can also be at a length that suits you..

A personal ceremony
Photo Credit – https://cole-youngphotography.com/

A Celebrant’s Point of View

As a celebrant, my priority is to get to know my couple well and devote time to understanding their needs for their wedding day. We usually meet a few times prior to the ceremony and it will always be your choice of how you want your special day to run.

I will find out about how you met, your loves and pet hates, and create a ceremony all about you. I can even help you with your vows if you so wish! Just because the ceremonies are predominantly non-religious, it doesn’t mean you can’t have religious aspects added. You can choose as many or as few religious elements as you like.

The best thing about having a celebrant is that you can get married just about anywhere you choose! Many people and venues don’t know that celebrants are not restricted to licensed venues. If you want to get married on a beach, at home or in a tree house then your wish is my command! Just give me a bit of warning so I can prepare myself in advance!

The Registry Office

Many couples choose to go to a registry office and do the legal bit before the big day. Or some even have a registrar at their wedding venue. The role of the celebrant is to personalise you ceremony and make it as special as they can for you. It’s up to you what you tell your guests about the legalities of the day and when that took place. You may even choose not to and keep that for close friends and family.

Your Choice

So, if you want your dream wedding with no restrictions, outdoors or indoors, then a celebrant is your best choice. My approach is all about adding a light-hearted, fun and uniquely personal touch to your ceremony.

Remember that your wedding ceremony is your day and nobody else’s! If you want bohemian, unconventional or something a bit unusual then just go for it – the world is your oyster! The difficulty you may have is choosing the right celebrant that suits your needs.

nicki komorowski photography
Tori conducting a ceremony at Great Betley Farmhouse Photo Credit – https://www.nickikomorowskiphotography.com/


Thank you Tori! I should also like to add that the cost of having a registrar come out to a licenced venue is roughly the same as a celebrant would cost. But as Tori says,  you don’t get such personal elements with a registrar.

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