Sum­mer Wed­dings

The Oban Times - - FEATURE - Look for the coun­cil’s ded­i­cated reg­is­tra­tion web­page at­riage/ for ev­ery­thing you need to know about get­ting mar­ried here.

With a gor­geous nat­u­ral back­drop and a plethora of fairy­tale venues, the West High­lands are a renowned wed­ding des­ti­na­tion, for lo­cal cou­ples and from those com­ing from the fur­thest cor­ners of the world. A wed­ding may be the big­gest party a cou­ple will ever or­gan­ise, so noth­ing should be left to chance. The

Oban Times sum­mer wed­ding guide will help the bride and groom plan their per­fect day. And a few tips will help make the process even smoother. Com­pro­mise is an es­sen­tial part of the wed­ding plan­ning. This may be the big­gest day of a bride’s life, but the groom can be in­volved as well. He may not be in­ter­ested in the colours, the cake or the brides­maid’s dresses and, in fact, he may not even care about the de­tails – all he is think­ing about is how happy his blush­ing bride will make him. But by ask­ing him to make some im­por­tant de­ci­sions, such as set­ting a bud­get, choos­ing grooms­men out­fits, sourc­ing rings and or­gan­is­ing the honey­moon, the bride won’t feel like she is do­ing ev­ery­thing – and he gets to put in his tup­pence worth. Our ad­ver­tis­ers can help make de­ci­sions as well, tak­ing some of the strain off the cou­ple. With that in mind, here is The Oban Times’ five-point plan to help or­gan­ise the big day with a min­i­mum of stress.


Wed­dings can be ex­pen­sive, so make a pri­or­ity list and be ready to com­pro­mise. Our ad­ver­tis­ers can help with this. And re­mem­ber, years from now, ev­ery­one will re­mem­ber the love and the fun, not whether they ate the most costly cake or drank the finest cham­pagne.


Speak to the cel­e­brant first, whether it is a min­is­ter or a mem­ber of the coun­cil of­fice, and get the date penned in be­fore you make any plans. Then the venue can be booked and in­vi­ta­tions printed.


By keep­ing a to-do list and plan­ning well ahead, the busy bride can stay or­gan­ised and keep on top of tasks. Keep records of ev­ery­thing, from dis­cus­sions with the venue man­ager and caterer to fab­ric swatches.


Think about the skills of peo­ple in the wed­ding party and fam­ily and ask them to be in­volved. Does Aunt Mary have mad cal­lig­ra­phy skills? Have her ad­dress the in­vi­ta­tions. Is the brides­maid a keen baker? Ask if she can make the cake. And for ev­ery­thing else, the friendly and knowl­edge­able Oban

Times ad­ver­tis­ers have all the bases cov­ered – it’s what they do.


Af­ter months of stress­ful plan­ning, by the time the wed­ding day ar­rives, the bride and groom can be at the end of their teth­ers. But if they let the pro­fes­sion­als do their jobs and al­low their fam­ily and friends to pam­per and as­sist in the last de­tails, the stressed out cou­ple can trans­form into the happy cou­ple – how it’s sup­posed to be. Just re­lax, smile and en­joy. As the first point of con­tact for cou­ples wish­ing to tie the knot in a civil cer­e­mony, the friendly and help­ful staff at the Argyll and Bute Coun­cil reg­is­trar’s of­fice will guide you through the en­tire process. And with new leg­is­la­tion al­low­ing cer­e­monies to be held at al­most any lo­ca­tion, brides and grooms have more flex­i­bil­ity than ever to cre­ate their dream day.

‘With re­cent leg­is­la­tion, reg­is­trars are au­tho­rised to con­duct cer­e­monies out­with their own of­fices at any venue with­out a spe­cific li­cence,’ said Gemma Cum­mins, reg­is­trar for Oban. ‘We do per­form a health and safety check prior, but we are free to marry wher­ever we feel is a suit­able place, so it makes it so much eas­ier for cou­ples now.’

Ms Cum­mins chal­lenges the tra­di­tional view that civil cer­e­monies have to be cut and dried. ‘Our motto is “It’s your day, so we do it your way”. We en­cour­age the in­clu­sion of mu­sic and po­etry – which is not to say cou­ples must have that – but we want to give them as much choice as they can pos­si­bly have so at the end of the day it’s per­fect. We are now al­lowed re­li­gious con­tent and al­ter­na­tive cer­e­monies such as hand­fast­ing and can­dle cer­e­monies are be­com­ing re­ally pop­u­lar.’

Hav­ing the cer­e­mony where the re­cep­tion is held, such as at a ho­tel, cas­tle or gath­er­ing hall, has be­come a pop­u­lar trend, but there are sev­eral stun­ning coun­cil mar­riage rooms avail­able through­out Argyll, in­clud­ing a new fa­cil­ity in He­lens­burgh, the cas­tle house in Dunoon, a room over the Linda McCart­ney gar­den in Camp­bel­town and a room over­look­ing Tober­mory Bay on Mull. In­creas­ingly, cou­ples are go­ing to the reg­is­trar for cer­e­monies to re­new their wed­ding vows, or hold a baby nam­ing cer­e­mony – these can even be com­bined for a spe­cial fam­ily day. Depend­ing on the venue, they can seat two to 80 guests, but if the cou­ple doesn’t have wit­nesses, the of­fice can sup­ply those as well.

Cou­ples are en­cour­aged to con­tact the reg­is­trar early in the process. ‘De­cide where and when you would like to be mar­ried, then con­tact your lo­cal reg­is­trar as soon as pos­si­ble to en­sure their avail­abil­ity and check out the le­gal re­quire­ments for your mar­riage,’ Ms Cum­mins said. ‘You can book the wed­ding with­out lodg­ing your forms.’

There is no res­i­dency re­quire­ment to get mar­ried in Scot­land, but ev­ery cou­ple is re­quired to give the reg­is­trar in the district they wish to be mar­ried at least 28 days’ no­tice. ‘We en­cour­age cou­ples to make con­tact with the reg­is­trar early, as dif­fer­ent cou­ples will have dif­fer­ent re­quire­ments. For ex­am­ple, if you are di­vorced or a sur­viv­ing part­ner, you will need your doc­u­ments and there are dif­fer­ent rules that ap­ply for cou­ples who are com­ing from out­with the EU. We do like to stress to cou­ples to make sure that ev­ery­thing is or­der – and we will guide them. Forms are valid for three months, but you can book a year or more in ad­vance.’

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