A guide to renewing your wedding vows

27 Sep 2018

A Renewal of Vows ceremony is the perfect opportunity to revisit your wedding day and the vows you made. Here's what you need to know...

Image: Desiree Fawn via Unsplash

When the wedding has been and gone and you've been happily married for a few years or more, you may feel the time is right to renew your wedding vows and reaffirm your commitment to one another. 

What does a Renewal of Vows ceremony involve?

A renewal of your vows is not legally binding and does not require a licence or formal paperwork. It is simply a symbolic way to pledge your love, dedication, honesty and fidelity to one another for the rest of eternity. You can write your own vows or use a generic script which incorporates the key promises you want to make.

The ceremony can be religious or non-religious, held in a location of your choice and personalised with a host of elements that add a meaningful touch. Use your original rings (perhaps with an engraving to mark the date of your vow renewal), or opt for new rings altogether. 

Who conducts a Renewal of Vows ceremony?

You can hire a professionally trained celebrant or draw on the provision of your local registration service. The Norfolk Registration Service (Celebrate in Norfolk) offers vow renewals as part of their extensive portfolio of services and can conduct a ceremony that is memorable, special and unique. Celebrate in Norfolk's team of experts can support and advise you with the wording for your ceremony and put a bespoke script together from your choices. This will allow you to create a ceremony that can take place where you want, is delivered how you want, and without limitations.

Here, the Celebrate in Norfolk team share their top reasons for choosing to renew your vows:

  1. It can be a great way to celebrate a special anniversary; maybe you have been married one, five, 10, 20 or even 30 years and want to say "I do" all over again. Maybe you wish to reaffirm your vows after a difficult period in your lives together; whatever your reason, it is up to you.
  2. It can be held anywhere – indoors or outdoors (don’t forget to gain permission from any landowners if necessary).
  3. It can be as formal or informal as you like; it’s your choice, although it is wise to let any guests know of dress codes/themes etc in advance.
  4. It can include several personal elements: readings, music, poetry, the exchange of rings or the re-dedication of your original rings.
  5. It can be organised just as you’d like it to be – let your imagination run wild. A Renewal of Vows ceremony holds no legal status, therefore, there are no legalities to worry about. 

How can I make my ceremony my own?

A renewal of vows is usually more relaxed than a wedding day and this means your guest list should be limited to your nearest and dearest. A vow renewal ceremony is also a beautiful idea for a couple who has had children since their wedding and can now make their vows with their new family present.

Keep it private, intimate and personal in every aspect to ensure that it strikes the perfect tone for the occasion. By keeping numbers to a minimum, this will also allow you to save money on catering and invitations. You could even wear your original wedding dress or suit for a budget-conscious, yet sentimental, approach to your outfits.

Still, it's a good idea to spend out on your photographer and videographer, if you choose to have one. Photographs (and video footage) are the hard copy memories you will keep forever and will be passed down the generations for years to come, so ensure you have someone there to document the day.  

Are you planning to renew your vows? We want to hear from you; email sarah.george@archant.co.uk

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