United Kingdom

Couple leave register office after getting married as receptions for up to 30 guests are allowed

A bride and groom have been showered in confetti as they left the register office after getting married as the Government relax coronavirus restrictions.

Bride Sarneet Singh, a geriatric trainee at St Mary's, and groom Neil Bhadresha, a doctor at St Thomas, were surrounded by guests as they left Kensington and Chelsea register office today. 

The couple beamed and were flooded with confetti by their wedding guests as they left Chelsea's old town hall.   

Wedding receptions for up to 30 guests will now be permitted in a further easing of England's lockdown, after plans to allow celebrations were put on hold.

Bride Sarneet Singh and groom Neil Bhadresha beamed as guests threw confetti when they left Kensington and Chelsea register office today

Guests celebrate the wedding as receptions for up to 30 guests are now allowed in England

Boris Johnson announced that, from Saturday, newlyweds will be able to mark the occasion with friends and family at a small reception following the ceremony. 

But this must only be in a location that adheres to Covid-19 guidelines, and should not take place in people's homes or gardens, according to Government guidance.

Plans to allow receptions to go ahead from August 1 were postponed by the Prime Minister with just 24 hours notice due to a rise in the prevalence of coronavirus in the community.

Wedding guests gather around a car as the bride and groom drive away from the register office

A photographer takes pictures of the wedding party standing outside the register office

Making the announcement, Mr Johnson acknowledged that it would be 'a real blow' to those who had made plans. 

Updated guidance says that, where possible, attendees at a wedding reception should remain seated, while dancing should not be allowed due to a risk of transmission.

Seating arrangements should follow social distancing guidance, meaning at most two households are seated together, with outdoor table service preferred.

People stand outside and watch a live stream of Sarneet Singh and Neil Bhadresha's wedding

Activities such as cake cutting should limit the number of guests involved where possible, the guidance states, while recommending that throwing of confetti or a bouquet is avoided.

It says that speeches should be given outside or in well-ventilated areas and advises that neither the speaker or any observers raise their voices, to avoid a risk of aerosol transmission of the virus. 

Previously, wedding receptions or parties were not allowed to take place, with any celebration following the ceremony instructed to follow the social distancing rules of six people outside or two households inside.

Weddings and civil partnerships with up to 30 guests have been permitted in England since July 4, where this can be safely accommodation while adhering to social distancing. 

One woman wipes her eye as another grins while they watch the live stream of the wedding

Guests who could not attend the ceremony watched on a live stream outside

This is the maximum number for all attendees at the event, including the couple, guests and any third-party suppliers, such as photographers. 

Casinos, bowling alleys, theatres and gig venues were also reopened, along with allowing up to 30 guests at wedding receptions, today.  

Audiences are allowed back into theatres and indoor venues, providing audiences keep to social distancing guidelines.

Tattoo studios, beauty salons, spas and hairdressers can also now offer additional services, including front-of-face treatments such as eyebrow threading.  

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