Christmas Day Weddings

Christmas is often a time for proposals, couples getting engaged and planning for their future wedding.  The run up to December 25th is a wonderful opportunity for festive weddings.  However, getting married on the day itself is not so popular anymore.  Despite it having an obvious romantic appeal, cost is unfortunately a major deciding factor; like everything else during this period premium prices are demanded. Yet, go back a few centuries and we find that Christmas Day and Boxing Day were the most popular days in the calendar to be married.  

Recently, while attempting to read A Christmas Carol yet again. (It is a wonderful story, but its language and writing style, doesn’t lend itself easily to a modern reader.  Or is it just me? ) I was reminded of how, in the time of Charles Dickens, December 25th was a normal working day for most people. It wasn’t a public or traditional holiday as we now know it to be. During those times most people worked six days a week.  Any holidays were a luxury and time off often meant without pay. It was only in the 1830’s that Christmas Day became recognised as a holiday. 

Couples wanting to marry latched onto the idea quickly and being married on Christmas Day soon became the popular choice.  A little later when Boxing Day became a bank holiday too, it meant they had two days to choose from.  Christmas weddings became  fashionable. Demand for weddings on these days grew, in some busy cities the Church would hold group weddings on Christmas Day.  Something I really can’t see making a revival today unless the day was to be shared by other family members and their spouses.  

These traditions gradually faded out as working conditions improved.  The advent of Trade Unions ensured workers were able to take advantage of bank holidays and request days off to suit their own ideals.  Nowadays, weddings can take place anytime and anywhere to suit couples individuality and their perfect wedding day.  This year I have been able to conduct a wedding by a lakeside and next year I’ll be up Helvellyn, fingers crossed and weather permitting.  It is a joy to enable couples such variety.

May I take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year.