Guide to getting married in the parish of The Rivers, Retford:


Guide to getting married in the parish of The Rivers, Retford:

Congratulations! We hope that your wedding is a special day and the service becomes a significant beginning of your married life.

We are pleased to be able to welcome you into one of our churches and will be praying for you as you prepare to celebrate your love for each other within the love and presence of God.

We want you to have a good experience and will do our part in helping to make your marriage special and memorable.

Getting married in a small village church is different from a hotel or civil building and so here are some guidelines to assist you.


Marriage Askham Parish Church September 2008

  • The Church of England has relaxed its rulings on where you can marry. So, if you or your parents have every lived in one of the villages in the Retford area for more than 6 months you can marry in that church! So now there is no need to pretend to still be living with your parents to be eligible if you have moved away!
  • Divorcees are welcome but we do need to see your decree absolute and have a chat before we can go forward. Our faith though, is built on the foundation of repentance and reconciliation recognising that we all make mistakes and need new beginnings, so please don’t be worried, but come prepared to be open and honest
  • Everybody is invited to a marriage prep day but please be aware that this is a mandatory requirement for divorcees.
  • Marriage prep is necessary to aid your understanding of a Christian marriage, the service in church and to talk through the vows you are making to one another.

The day also provides an opportunity for your priest  get to know you informally and for you to think seriously about your marriage vows. Most couples are surprised at how much they enjoy the day! They appreciate the relaxed atmosphere, some time together talking about and listening to each other.

  • After prep day we will arrange dates to meet to plan your service and rehearsal Some dos and maybe not!!

Some dos and maybe not !!!!

  • You may get married any day of the week apart from Sundays which is usually already a very full day!
  • We are still required legally to marry you within daylight hours…so anytime before 5pm as a general rule!
  • All our churches are open as regular places of worship and as such your wedding is a service of worship…it is not just a wedding venue!
  • One bible reading is a requirement in a church wedding but other readings/poetry etc. can also be included to make your service unique to you
  • A couple of hymns are usually included
  • Bells and organist booked through church
  • Please leave one pedestal of flowers in the church following the service.
  • If you are thinking of having the service videoed please discuss as there are restraints.
  • Have as many photos as you like before and after the signing of registers but photographers are asked to refrain from recording the sacred part of the service.
  • No dogs (or horses!!) as bridesmaids!! (Yes, I have been asked!) but of course guide dogs for the blind, hearing or special aids are welcome!


Legal requirements:

Banns, which are a formal statement of your intent to marry, are read for 3 consecutive weeks, within 3 months of the wedding date. They are read in both the wedding parish and the one in which you live. These are legal requirements and you cannot be married if they haven’t been read!! The church you are to be married in will take responsibility for the banns but you are responsible for contacting the parish priest where you live. The website ‘a church near you’ will give you your local Parish Church if you don’t know!



Capacity of churches

  • East Markham…..200 max
  • Askham 90
  • Headon 100
  • Grove 100 *extra chairs possible to get to 120
  • East Drayton 120 max


  • No deposit is necessary but it is helpful to pay 4 weeks before the wedding if possible. Cheques should be made to the pcc of the church in which you are marrying.
  • The fees for the year are laid out on a separate sheet

And finally!!

Please feel free to contact us at any time if you have any questions or anxieties that arise through this exciting but busy time!!

Please contact:

The Revd Canon Bronwen Gamble, Rector Designate of The Rivers, Retford

Chair of DAC, Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham

The Rectory, Lincoln Road, East Markham, Nottingham. NG22 0SH

01777 870 848   Mobile 07568 722101




Marriage Prep Day