Wedding-hours change will not apply to the Church of England

A relaxation of the law that places a restriction on the hours when marriages may be solemnised does not apply to wedding services in the Church of England, lawyers from Church House said this week. They warned that conducting a marriage outside the permitted hours “would amount to an ecclesiastical offence for the purposes of the Clergy Discipline Measure 2003”.

At present, both canon law and the 1949 Marriage Act say that weddings can be conducted only between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. The restriction in the Marriage Act will be lifted from 1 October, when provisions in the Protection of Freedoms Act come into force. But the new law does not amend canon law.

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