Weddings and civil partnerships with up to 30 people in attendance are now permitted in England and Wales – but when will receptions make a comeback?

As lockdown eases, there are signs of a rise in infections in certain parts of the UK. A plan to allow wedding receptions from August 1st has thus been postponed until at least August 15th.

Currently, in England, the same rules apply to wedding receptions as any other gathering, limiting them to two households indoors or six people outdoors.

Meanwhile, in Wales, the ban on weddings and civil partnerships has also been lifted, but no large celebrations are allowed. There is no restriction on travel to attend a wedding, but services must abide by social distancing rules and be COVID safe.

The rules do differ in England and Wales – complicating matters for those whose friends or family live over the border. In Wales, two households can now join to form an extended household. That household may meet indoors, stay overnight and have physical contact. In England, this type of arrangement is known as a ‘support bubble’ and is only permitted when there is just one adult in a household.

So, a wedding in England and Wales can include a reception, but currently, only one other household can attend. Larger gatherings are not yet permitted in either country, so hold on to those wedding invites for all and sundry at the moment.

While it is disappointing news for those who had planned a big wedding celebration, wedding receptions should hopefully make a comeback before too long – provided we all stay safe.