Ceremony

Did you miss the ceremony? Would you like to relive it in some kind of strange computer-based form? Or were you just not paying enough attention at the time because the bears behind you were more interesting? If any of these is the case, this page is for you!

This page contains the full text of our wedding ceremony, with links to the readings and music it featured. Enjoy!

Paul and Edith walking up the aisleProcessional

(to music arranged and recorded by the bride)

Bride, Groom, Best Men and Bridesmaids enter and walk along aisle in pairs, to music.

Introduction

(by the Superintendent Registrar)

The Superintendent Registrar reading our introductionGood afternoon, and a warm welcome to you all. My name is Paresh Prajapati, the Superintendent Registrar, and with me is the Registrar.

We are here today to witness the marriage of Paul and Edith, and on their behalf I would like to thank you for joining them. I know it means a great deal to them that you can be here at London Zoo to share in their happiness on this occasion.

The five years for which Paul and Edith have been a couple have taken them through a range of circumstances, which have not always been easy. A year living 500 miles apart was more pleasantly followed by a year in the same city, and the subsequent two years of weekend and holiday visits at last gave way to them settling together in their new home last year. As we witness their vows today, we witness the start of the rest of their lives together.

Many things about marriage have changed significantly in the past century. No longer is a husband expected to be a breadwinner, and a wife a dependent housewife. A husband and a wife can now assume equal responsibility for any aspects of a marriage.

The most fundamental tenets of marriage, however, remain unchanged, and as important to any relationship as they have ever been. Marriage is the ultimate form of partnership, requiring devotion, the ability to listen, the wisdom to know when we are wrong, and the strength to put things right.

For Paul and Edith, getting married today is a proud confirmation of their commitment to each other, and of the love, the respect and the true friendship that they have for each other. Together they will be stronger to meet whatever life holds for them.

Susannah giving her readingReading 1

O Tell Me The Truth About Love - WH Auden

Read by Susannah Goodyear

Exchange of vows

Paul and Edith, today you will exchange vows which will unite you as husband and wife. The words are a formal and public pledge of your love, and a promise of lifelong dedication to each other.

Before you are joined in matrimony, it is my duty to remind you of the solemn and binding character of the vows you are about to make. Marriage according to the law of this country is the union of one man with one woman, voluntarily entered into for life to the exclusion of all others.

I am now going to ask each of you to declare that you know of no lawful reason why you may not be joined in matrimony to each other.

Groom, please repeat after me:

Paul and Edith exchange vowsI declare that I know of no legal reason why I, Paul Speller, may not be joined in marriage to Edith Gray.

Bride, please repeat after me:

I declare that I know of no legal reason why I, Edith Gray, may not be joined in marriage to Paul Speller.

Paul and Edith, you have gathered about you those whom you love most. You invited them here to receive their encouragement and support, and to celebrate with you at this special time. I ask you now in the presence of this company:

Paul Andrew John Speller, will you take Edith Ann Gray to be your wife? Will you comfort her in life's sorrow and pain, will you rejoice with her through good times, and will you remain true to her for the rest of your lives together?

I will.

Edith Ann Gray, will you take Paul Andrew John Speller to be your husband? Will you comfort him in life's sorrow and pain, will you rejoice with him through good times, and will you remain true to him for the rest of your lives together?

I will.

The moment has now come for this couple to make their marriage contract with each other.

Groom, please repeat after me:

I, Paul Andrew John Speller, take you, Edith Ann Gray, to be my wedded wife.

Bride, please repeat after me:

I, Edith Gray, take you, Paul Andrew John Speller, to be my wedded husband.

Paul's grandmothers giving their readingReading 2

The Art Of A Good Marriage - Wilferd Arlan Peterson

Read by Joan Huxley and Margaret Speller

Exchange of rings

We have now come to the exchange of rings, which is the traditional way of sealing the vows you have just made. The wedding ring is the unbroken circle symbolising unending and everlasting love and is the outward sign of the promise you have made to each other.

Groom, please repeat after me:

Paul putting Edith's wedding ring on her fingerEdith, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love and commitment.

Bride, please repeat after me:

Paul, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love and commitment.

Paul and Edith, you have both made the declarations required by law, and you have made solemn promises to each other in the presence of your friends and family gathered here today.

This day is the start of married life for you together. We hope that the feelings of love that you have for each other will deepen and grow ever stronger throughout the years to come.

It gives me great pleasure to declare that you are now husband and wife - congratulations!

Paul signing the registerSigning of the Register

to music: It's Only Time - The Magnetic Fields

Paul and Edith walking back along the aisleRecessional

to music: Northern Sky - Nick Drake

zoolyweds - Paul and Edith's wedding

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Marriage timer

Paul and Edith have now been married for 4459 days, 8 hours and 21 minutes!

Information correct at time of page loading (00:51 19/11/17)