How to book St Mary's for your New Forest Church Wedding.

It’s a real delight for us to host wedding services at St.Mary’s, Copythorne. The church provides a wonderful location with a truly beautiful setting for the vows and giving and receiving of rings. The Wedding Day is a crowning day in anybody’s life, and it is our privilege to prepare the couple by giving time to getting the order of service just right, explaining the meaning of the symbolism and words used, and to help with the decoration of the church and choice of hymns, readings and music. John, our Priest-in-Charge will give time to each couple to ensure it is the very best of days.

In the Wedding service what it means to love and be loved is affirmed and celebrated. For the couple it is a time of intimacy with family and friends – the church at St. Mary’s, Copythorne offers far more than a ‘venue’ – the church becomes, through the wedding celebration, a very special building for generations to come. At St,Mary’s we have an excellent choir and musical expertise to ensure the day is a real time of celebration.

If you are interested in getting married with us at St. Mary’s, Copythorne, do get in touch with John (see below).


 ‘Weddings’ flower festival 2017

See the church and get ideas for your wedding in this short video of our Weddings Flower Festival held in September 2017.


Who can get married at St Mary’s

Most people can get married at St Mary’s – and we welcome brides and grooms to choose our church for such an important day in their lives. You can get married at the church if

  1. You have a qualifying connection through one or more of the following
  • One of you has at any time lived in the parish for a period of at least 6 months, or
  • One of your parents has lived here for at least six months during your lifetime, or
  • A parent or grandparent was married here, or
  • You attended Copythorne Infant School (or Bartley Junior School), or
  • You were baptised or confirmed in St Mary’s, or
  • You are on the church electoral roll, or
  • You (or one of your parents) have at any time regularly gone to normal church service at St Mary’s for a period of at least six months.
  1. You can create a connection simply by attending St Mary’s usual service at least once a month for six consecutive months. If you decide to do this, you’ll need leave another two months before the wedding for the banns to be read too.
  2. If the above options aren’t suitable for you but you really want to get married at St Mary’s and feel that you have a special connection to the Church, then you might be able to apply for the ‘Archbishop’s Special Licence’.    It may be that your parents lived here before you were born, or you have a grant parent living in the Parish – in this instance St Mary’s Vicar, John will be able to help you apply for a Special Licence.  These take time, and are not automatically granted, so make sure you plan in advance.

We have provision for re-marrying divorcees, so please do not feel awkward about approaching us in relation to getting married here at St. Mary’s. One of our clergy will happily meet with you both to discuss planning your big day.

What is the process

We want you to truly enjoy your wedding day and so want to make sure that you know exactly what will happen and when. We know that a very important part of your choice to get married in Church is knowing who will be marrying you.   Rev’d John will provide for you two preparation sessions to ensure the practical details of organisation etc are taken care of, and also to prepare for the actual service – the bits you have to say – so you can really enter into the service relaxed (as much as you can be!) and full of anticipation. You will also have a rehearsal for the service to give you chance to say the words prior to the big day. These times are greatly appreciated and go a long way to ensure the day is full of wonderful memories for you.

Did you know that the Church of England have a website dedicated to helping you plan you wedding, with huge amounts of practical information incuding

  • the costs
  • the legal aspects
  • the different roles
  • suggestions for hymns (including the chance to listen to them)
  • suggestions for readings (both bible and other)
  • Photography

Useful Information

The church has a choir which can be booked for weddings and we also have organists available to play at your wedding. The church looks beautiful when decorated with flowers for a wedding – why not come along to our Wedding Flower Festival on the 8-10th September to have a look. There are some fabulous places to take stunning wedding photographs – talk to Rev’d John for some pointers for your to brief your photographer.

How do I book?

To book a wedding at St. Mary’s Copythorne please contact either: The Rev’d John Reeve Julie Godden, Parish Administrator: 023 8086 5103 (only Tuesday and Friday mornings 9.00am-12 noon) When making a booking, please specify very clearly you are booking for St.Mary’s Copythorne