In a statement just released, the Wedding Taskforce are meeting with Minister Scully tomorrow (Wednesday 17th March) to discuss the published article 24th February of the Step 2 Road map for England.
The statement says
”The Weddings Taskforce has been seeking clarity over inconsistencies and ambiguities between the roadmap announcements (and accompanying Government-produced graphics), the ‘COVID-19 Response – Spring 2021’ published 22nd February, and the ‘Re-opening businesses and venues in England’ published 24th February by the Cabinet Office.
We have now received confirmation that weddings and receptions are only permitted for 15 guests between 12th April and 16th May in: places of worship, public buildings, locations and outdoor settings that are already permitted to open. This does not include the vast majority of England’s licensed wedding venues where over 70% of weddings take place”.
This news means that no one has been able to answer brides and worried couples questions regarding their location plans.
”The Taskforce estimates this news affects circa 7,000 weddings planned before 17th May. We believe Government should honour the reasonable assumptions made by couples, venues, suppliers and their own Registrars (who have been booking weddings for couples in licensed wedding venues in the same period). All weddings and receptions for up to 15 people should be permitted in COVID-secure wedding venues. Couples understand the limitations, and venues, by law, operate with strict safety protocols in place. A fact the Prime Minster overlooked in his Q&A on Sunday when attempting to explain the disparity between weddings and other events in Step 3 of the roadmap.
We have asked BEIS and Minister Scully to intervene and drawn their attention to the Government’s own contradictory information, which in the publication: ‘Re-opening businesses and venues in England’ implies weddings have an explicit exemption to the meeting indoors rules in Step 2 of the reopening plan. The Taskforce is meeting with the Minister and his department Wednesday afternoon. We will also seek an explanation as to why the updated Weddings Guidance remains unpublished more than three weeks after the roadmap announcements”
Step 2 road map outlines details of businesses and attractions etc that will be allowed to be open from April 12th but despite several meetings the weddings and events sector has been left out.
Step 2 – no earlier than 12 April
Following the move to Step 2, further settings will be permitted to open. Unless a specific exemption exists, these must only be attended/used in line with the wider social contact limits at this stage – as a single household or bubble indoors; or in a group of 6 people or 2 households outdoors.
The government website then goes on to say
“In all the venues listed, indoor events that bring people together – even if they do not mix with other households – must not run until Step 3. This is only permitted if there is an explicit exemption – this includes support groups, supervised activities for children, parent-and-child groups (up to 15 people, not counting those aged under five), communal worship, or a wedding, reception or commemorative event like a wake.”
Step 3 – no earlier than 17 May
Following the move to Step 3, further settings will be permitted to open. Unless a specific exemption exists, these must only be attended/used in line with the wider social contact limits at this stage – in a group of 6 people or 2 households indoors; or in a group of no more than 30 people outdoors.
Indoor areas of hospitality venues will reopen. As outdoors, table service will be required.
To read the all the details on the government road map CLICK HERE
The British Florist Association continues to sit on the Council of Representatives for the UK Wedding Taskforce and will relay information from the meetings on this matter as soon as we hear anything. For Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland there has been no specific change but meetings are still happening and the Taskforce continues to support these talks.