Getting married is one of the most important events in anyone’s life and if we can help with your wedding service we would be delighted to do that.
These notes are intended to guide you as you plan your forthcoming wedding.  If you need any other information, please do not hesitate to contact the Minister 0131 444 1615, or by email:

Booking a date for your wedding

It is always important that you make early contact with the Minister to arrange a date for your wedding. This should be done at an early stage of your planning for your wedding to ensure that the church and Minister are available for the date you would like.

Meeting with the Minister

Mr Kennedy will arrange to meet with you to discuss the date and preliminary arrangements for your wedding. It is usual, about four months before the date of your wedding, for a further meeting to go over all the details for the service, you should contact Mr Kennedy about this time to make arrangements for this meeting.

Getting married in Church

Craiglockhart is a parish church and we understand that offering to conduct marriage services is part of our service to our parish. It would be usual for one or both of the Bride or Groom to live within the parish or to have a family connection to the congregation or parish.
There is no requirement for couples getting married at Craiglockhart to join the church. You are warmly welcomed and encouraged to join us for worship on Sunday morning at 10.30 am or on Sunday evening  at 6.30 pm. <can we have a link from these phrases to the relevant pages in the worship section?> It may be that a marriage preparation course is being run at the time you are planning your wedding and you will be invited to join this short course.

Civil Requirements

To get married at Craiglockhart Parish Church you must be legally entitled to get married. You must therefore register to be married with the Registrar. This should be done about three months before the date of your wedding. The Registrar will tell you when to collect the Schedule from them. The Schedule is the document signed by the Bride and Groom, the Minister and the two witnesses on the day of the service. This document must be returned to the Registrars within three days of the service so that your marriage may be recorded and a Marriage Certificate issued. The law requires the Schedule to be in the building where the ceremony takes place at the time of the ceremony and so it is vitally important that you make sure you have this Schedule and that it is in the church at the time of the service.


It is usual for there to be a rehearsal most often on the evening before the service. At the rehearsal the Bride and Groom, Best man and Bridesmaids, and all other members of the bridal party should attend. The rehearsal will last about 20 minutes and involves walking round where you will stand and how you will enter and leave the church during the service.


It is usual to have two hymns at a wedding service, but sometimes a couple will choose to have one hymn. The choice of hymns will be discussed with the Minister. Music for entry and retiral from the church will be discussed with the Minister and can also be discussed with the Church Organist. Our Church Organist is Mr Lewis Forbes and Lewis can be contacted at church on Sunday mornings or by email at

The Kirk Session cannot permit anyone other than the Church Organist to play without the prior consent of the Minister and the Church Organist being obtained.

Orders of Service

These can be printed through any stationers or printers but should normally contain the words of the hymns and the words of the Blessing if this is to be sung by the congregation.  The hymns are the choice of the bride and groom but the Minister is normally consulted before printing is arranged.


Flowers are the responsibility of the wedding party.  They should be undertaken tastefully and in accordance with the knowledge that the Church is a place of worship.  If the wedding takes place on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday, it is normal practice to leave the flowers in Church for Sunday Service, and thereafter for them to be given by the Church to the housebound, bereaved or ill.

As soon as the arrangements regarding the Church wedding flowers are made, please telephone the Flower Convener, Mrs Ursula Lauder 0131 441 1017, so that she can co-operate with you or the florist, whichever is applicable, over access to the Church premises whenever required.

The family may take the flowers after Sunday worship, or even after the wedding ceremony, if you wish.  However, if this is to be done, the Minister and/or Mrs Lauder should be told in advance.


Photographs may be taken at any suitable place outside the Church before and after the Service – for a reasonable length of time.  No photographs are to be taken during the wedding ceremony, either by an official photographer or by any guest attending the wedding.  The official photographer may photograph the signing of the Register.

The use of video cameras is not allowed, except from the gallery and by only one camera.  Again, no additional lighting can be permitted.

The Ceremony

The wedding ceremony is an Act of Public Worship.  The Minister is responsible for its conduct.  The Order followed is that of the Church of Scotland Book of Common Order.  During the Service, the bride and groom are asked to take vows.  The vows are:-

I, Groom now take you, Bride to be my wife.
In the presence of God and before these witnesses I promise to be a loving, faithful, and loyal husband to you, until God shall separate us by death.

I, Bride now take you, Groom to be my husband.
In the presence of God and before these witnesses I promise to be a loving, faithful, and loyal wife to you until God shall separate us by death.

They may, however, effect to affirm to a question being asked of them, as follows:-

Do you, Groom now take Bride to be your wife.
In the presence of God and before these witnesses do you promise to be a loving, faithful, and loyal husband to Bride, until God shall separate you by death.
Answer:  I do.

Do you, Bride now take Groom to be your husband.
In the presence of God and before these witnesses do you promise to be a loving, faithful, and loyal wife to Groom until God shall separate you by death.
Answer:  I do.

The Minister will discuss this with them.  One or two rings may be given and received.

On the day

On the Wedding Day, the Church will be open about one hour before the Service.  The Ushers should make themselves known to the Elder on duty and follow his instructions about the seating of guests.  The Ushers in the Vestibule of the Church usually hand the Order of Service to guests.  Confetti must not be thrown anywhere within the grounds of the Church and in the neighbouring streets.

Cars for the bridal party may enter the grounds of the Church, but only the Bridal car may remain there during the Service.  The other cars must park elsewhere.  Drivers of cars must exercise extreme care when manoeuvring within the grounds, as turning space is very limited.  All drivers of cars must not leave their vehicle in a position which would cause any inconvenience to residents in the vicinity of the Church.  In particular, cars must not obstruct access to or egress from a dwelling house.

The fees

The fees for a wedding at Craiglockhart Parish Church are: £300 for the church and £100 for the organist.  Cheques for these fees should be payable to “Craiglockhart Parish Church” and sent to the Treasurer, Mrs Kay Ferguson, Craiglockhart Parish Church, Craiglockhart Drive North, Edinburgh EH14 1HS.