©William Prescott


A wonderful day to begin the rest of your life

© Julia Conway Photography
© William Prescott
© Julia Conway Photography
©William Prescott

Practical Matters

Are we allowed to take your wedding?

There are a set of rules by which we are legally allowed to take your wedding, these are detailed in the Marriage Measure guidance.pdf, however, briefly they are:

A person has a Qualifying Connection with a parish if:

He or she:

• was baptised in the parish. (This does not apply where the baptism formed part of a combined service of baptism or confirmation); or
• had his or her confirmation entered in a church register book of a church or chapel in the parish; or
• has at any time had his or her usual place of residence in the parish for at least 6 months; or
• has at any time habitually attended public worship in the parish for at least 6 months;
a Parent of that person has at any time during that person’s lifetime:
• had his or her usual place of residence in the parish for at least 6 months; or
• habitually attended public worship in the parish for at least 6 months; •
a Parent or Grandparent of that person was married in the parish.

If you are divorced this is no legal bar to being married in church. However, vicars/rectors have the right to refuse to conduct such weddings or allow them to be conducted in their church. The present rector of CHO will conduct weddings of divorced people but please contact him first to discuss your particular situation.

How much will it cost?

2024 Wedding Fees are comprised of mandatory items and optional items as follows:
Mandatory Fees
Wedding Service – £531
Reading of Banns – £36

Optional Items
Organist – £130 (by liaison with organist)
Choir – £50
Bells rung at the end of the service – by arrangement with the bell ringers

Heating – £50

An invoice will be sent out about a month prior to your wedding which can be paid by cheque made payable to ‘Compton PCC’, ‘Hursley PCC’, or ‘Otterbourne PCC’ as appropriate. If you would prefer to settle your account earlier or in stages please contact the administrator to discuss this.

Please note wedding fees are revised by General Synod every year.


Parking in Compton

On street parking near All Saints’ Compton is very limited and is reserved for the wedding cars and disabled guests.

There is a field opposite the church and in dry weather this may be used for parking, to arrange this please contact our administrator. It is also possible to use the adjacent school playground by arrangement with the Compton C of E Primary School – telephone 01962 712035, or email adminoffice@compton.hants.sch.uk

Parking in Hursley

On street parking near All Saints’ Hursley is very limited and should be reserved for the wedding cars and disabled guests.

Arrangements can be made through IBM Hursley Security Control (01962 815000) or via uklabscomms@uk.ibm.com.

Parking in Otterbourne

Parking in front of St. Matthew’s Church is reserved for the weddings cars and disabled guests.

There is some free public car parking available very near the church, just off Cranbourne Drive.

Service Matters

The Service itself

The PDF behind the following link is a possible order of service for your wedding.

Common Worship Marriage Service

The Rector will discuss various options for your service when you first meet, you may then meet again to review your chosen order of service before going to print.

This link will take you to a PDF containing various alternative prayers, etc., to make your wedding unique to you.

Marriage alternatives & suggested prayers

As a private arrangement we have someone who is able to produce orders of service for an additional fee. 


It is traditional for the bride to walk into church to a piece of music and for the couple to walk out to a different piece. Either or both may be played live, or from recorded music.

The norm is for 3 hymns, the first should be easy to sing, not too loud or too high (some of your guests might be a bit out of practice!), the last should be stiring and joyful. The middle hymn can be either.

During the signing of the registers you can choose a piece to be played on the organ, or the choir (if you have them) can sing an anthem. If you have friends who play an instrument or sing you might like to ask them to consider performing during this part of the service. Recorded music is also an option.

Our Rector and our organists will be able to help you with your choices.


The following link gives some suggested bible readings, the list is not exhaustive, but it might give you some ideas. The norm is for your wedding service to have at least one bible reading and one non-bible reading. There are lots of websites giving suggestions for non-bible readings. It makes the service more personal if a family member or friend is able to read the passages chosen.

Wedding Readings


• How long does the service take?
The service usually takes about 45 minutes, then time for photos needs to be added on. The ushers should be on duty half an hour before the start of the service, the groom and best man should arrive about 30 minutes before the start. The bride should arrive allowing time for photos to be taken before entering the church. It is worth bearing in mind that the rector and/or the organist might need to leave to take another wedding after yours.

• Who can be involved?
You will need at least two ushers at the door, bridesmaids / best man as you choose, someone to give the bride away and 2 or more witnesses. You can also have friends and family involved in the readings or play/sing music.

• Can anyone witness a wedding?
Yes, if they are old enough to understand what they are doing.

• May guests throw confetti?
Yes but please not in the church doorway as it blows back into the church and is difficult to clear up – outside in the church grounds or by the gate is fine. Also please request guests only use biodegradable confetti, no metallic pieces please.

• Can the service be videoed?

• Does the bride have to be ‘given away’?
No, if the bride chooses to be given away it can be by a male or female relative or friend.

• What are banns?
Banns are the public announcement of your intention to marry. It is a legal requirement that these be called in the church where you are to be married and also in the churches of the parishes where you are both resident. If you both live within this benefice, we will take care of the banns for you, but if one or both of you live outside the benefice you are responsible for organising the calling of your banns in those churches.

• Can divorced people be married in the benefice?

• What is the difference between a wedding and a service of wedding blessing?
The service of wedding blessing, properly known as ‘prayers following civil marriage’, follows a civil wedding ceremony at a registry office. It is not a statutory service and banns do not have to be read.

• How do we get our Marriage certificate?
Since the change of procedure at the General Register Office churches can no longer issue new Marriage Certificates for weddings after May 2021. For a wedding in the Winchester district you must go to: https://www.hants.gov.uk/birthsdeathsandceremonies/copycertificates/marriagecertificate
 from there the procedure is very simple.

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