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Humanist Wedding Ceremonies

Fun, Relaxed, Meaningful

Rachael Meyer - Wedding Celebrant, North Yorkshire

Fabulous, Non-Religious, Humanist Wedding Ceremonies in Harrogate, Leeds, York, the Yorkshire Dales and Newcastle

Alternative, Celebrant-led Wedding Ceremonies

 

If you're dreaming of a non-religious wedding ceremony that's more meaningful, fun, relaxed, personalised and interesting than a civil ceremony, the pizzazz of a story-led humanist wedding ceremony is probably exactly right for you. I'm a professional, creative writer , an unflappable and engaging presenter and an enthusiastic, smiley wedding celebrant, accredited by Humanists UK. I'm based in Harrogate, North Yorkshire; and  I tell stories of life and love in wedding ceremonies around Harrogate, Leeds, Skipton and York areas, right up through the Yorkshire Dales and up the A1 to Newcastle.

When you've worked so hard at pulling together an incredible wedding day with the ultimate individuality and attention to detail, a ceremony whose beating heart totally captures the essence of "YOU" will delight you and your guests. With a detailed, well written, inclusive script, delivered with love, passion and flair  we can get your party started with a buzz that will carry on way past your first dance. If you want all the pomp and ceremony with insight, smiles, sentimentality, romance, energy, laughs and tears of loveliness, you're in the right place!

 

Some of my couples come from backgrounds with different traditions, religions, cultural and spiritual beliefs. No problem. Whatever your vibe, my wedding ceremonies are all about love, marriage and you - your journey, your story. And therefore, they are interesting, relevant and inclusive for all. We can keep it simple and traditional, or we can respectfully borrow and blend elements of familial / cultural reference. I've delivered some incredible multi-cultural wedding ceremonies - all free of restriction, religious content or legal jargon. With a little help from me, you can be sure that "you do you", with your story, your promises, and the celebration of your marriage always front and centre of your wedding ceremony.

 

Where can a humanist wedding take place?

 

A humanist wedding ceremony can be held anywhere you like as they are not yet legally recognised. That bit you can do separately for around £50-£60, with the registrar. There are no restrictions, so you don't have to choose a wedding venue that is licensed for civil weddings (hurray for the cost reduction and the travel logistics). Whatever venue you choose - indoors or outdoors - your ceremony can be in a tithe barn, or village hall, at a hotel or castle; in a pub, a tipi, amidst abbey ruins or in your own garden; and whether your guest numbers are intimate or grand, I work  across Harrogate, Knaresborough, Leeds, Wetherby, Ripon and York; Skipton, Burnsall, Pateley Bridge, Grassington, Bolton Abbey, Thirsk and Masham in the Yorkshire Dales; and also Northallerton, Newcastle, and Northumberland.. 

 
Hello..... Is It Me You're Looking For?

 

The best way of understanding how your ceremony could look and feel with me as your wedding celebrant is to read my reviews. But I've also included a few videos, photos, and lots of info, to give you a head start. And then I really hope you'll give me a call or send me an email. 

There's a LOT of info on here, which I hope will be helpful., But if it's too much, and you prefer to pick up the phone for a quick chat, or ping me an email or a text/Whatsapp message, just get in touch... any time. For a quick synopsis on what I can offer, see below!

1. I write and deliver highly personalised wedding ceremonies with beauty, romance, a little kick,  a little humour, laughs, tears, smiles and meaning - an emotional rollercoaster that will totally captivate your guests.  My ceremonies are story-led, inclusive, intimate, engaging, vibrant, thoughtful, insightful, and the ultimate party starter - the complete opposite vibe to a registrar-led ceremony. I don't do boring....

 

2. I'm a professional, creative writer. Each of my wedding scripts and ceremonies is totally different because each and every couple is unique. There is no better story than a love story, and there is no better place to share a love story than on your wedding day. I put days of work into ensuring your wedding script is perfect for you. After I've drilled down and got all the juicy bits of info about you both at a 2-3 hour very chilled meeting, I go away and write your script. When it lands in your inbox a month before your big day, you'll be amazed at how detailed and how "you" your story is. 

 

I craft your script with attention to detail, emotion and humour, I write about your reasons for getting married, your commitment to one another and your hopes and dreams. From start to finish, I weave in all kinds of interesting, fun and touching facts about you as individuals and as a couple; and about your journey to your vows.

 

Your ceremony script will include words about love; tales of first dates, milestone events, challenges you've supported each other through, brilliant experiences you've shared, hilarious character observations and tiny details featuring your family members, fur babies or friends. I also research other components of your ceremony, such as song lyrics, poetry and readings to create the best flow, By the time you say your wedding vows, your guests will feel totally involved, uplifted and ready to celebrate.

 

3. I'm a trained public speaker and event manager. Every ceremony is delivered with 0flair, passion, clarity, and emotions that will surprise, delight and keep your guests on the edge of their seats from start to finish. I liaise with your suppliers and contributors  to ensure that everything is perfectly aligned, I take a few photos of you after the ceremony (I used to be a wedding photographer) to include on your final script, and... focusing on the aesthetics even more closely.. I even try and tie in with your colour theme!!

4. I have no rules. No restrictions. I get to know you. You get to get to know me, and I'm very smiley, friendly, flexible, unflappable, unshockable, professional and calming, so everything is super relaxed on your wedding day. Dogs, kids, cinematic readings? Bring 'em on!

 

5. You don't need to do a thing. No stress. We have a conversation. I do everything else. Easy. I am here to bring ideas, guide you through every decision, write your story and write and perform the most magical wedding ceremony for you to enjoy.

 

6. You do you. You have total freedom with the style. 50% of my ceremonies have a classic, traditional feel, with nothing but words, music and wedding vows with a ring exchange. But if you like, we can mix it up. We can include: a groom team entrance;  you can literally tie the knot with a hand fasting, you can have a shot of whisky or tequila with all your guests, cut your wedding cake, plant a tree, light a unity candle or have a singalong! 

 

You can write your own vows or I can write them for you. We can have a blend of modern and traditional vows.  

7. I have a professional PA (busking amp) with mics, which we can use to amplify speech if you have an outdoor ceremony or over 100 guests, and play music through if your venue doesn't have mics or a sound system (or a good enough sound system). I also have a load more props that you can borrow - candlesticks, storm lantern, hand fasting chords, oath stones and quaich - all included within my fee. 

I'd love to hear from you. Please get in touch as soon as possible to secure your date.

Call: 07795 122009. Email: hello@rachaelmeyer.com

"We had so many compliments on the ceremony - it was definitely the favourite part of the day for everyone we spoke to afterwards"

- Georgia and Richard, Rudding Park, Harrogate

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"Reading the draft ceremony, which was a pitch perfect mix of emotion and laugh out loud, instantly put us at ease. Rache's advantage here is her writing background, she is a gifted story writer and teller, this is the most important part of a humanist ceremony. Of course, on our big day, she also delivered it all with aplomb. 5 stars doesn't cover it, don't hesitate in speaking with Rachael. - worth every penny"

Kevin and Vicki - Nation of Shopkeepers, Leeds wedding

Rachael Meyer wedding ceremony Grassfield Hall

Here's what my lovely bride, Olivia said, after the ceremony I delivered for her and Alex:

 

“We can’t thank you enough for making our wedding ceremony so wonderful. You made everything about the process so seamless and enjoyable, from our planning meeting, to sharing the script, to the perfect delivery on the day. Everyone commented on the ceremony – and said it was the perfect reflection of us both – exactly as we wanted!

You made our day extra special and we’re so glad that you were part of our love story and our singalong! Thank you, thank you, thank you!”"

SOUND ON for this highlights video of Olivia and Alex's wedding at Thirsk Lodge Barn, North Yorkshire on New Years Eve 2022, which was created by the lovely James Turner Videography. It was the first time he'd ever used the narrative from a celebrant in such a way. I was very proud that he did. Words written and spoken by Rachael Meyer, Celebrant, North Yorkshire.

"The way you delivered the ceremony was brilliant - I could watch you and listen to you for hours. The whole thing was both moving, insightful and funny, but the way you told their story, with all the little facial expressions and smiles, connection and pauses showcased you as a real pro. I'm a presenter and a voice coach, and I couldn't have wished for anything better." - wedding guest, Wood Hall wedding

About You

First things first. My wedding ceremonies don't include any religious content but you don't have to be a card carrying humanist. Humanism is simply a non religious philosophy on life, based around kindness, tolerance and happiness.

 

You might have been to a humanist wedding ceremony and decided it would be perfect for you. You may share humanist values. You may be just looking for a personalised, flexible, fun, personalised and meaningful alternative to a civil marriage ceremony.

 

You may be getting married for the first, second or third time. You may be young, old; of opposite sex or the same sex. Maybe the registrar just can't make it to the venue of your dreams on your chosen date! 

 

Whatever your reason for looking into a humanist wedding ceremony, and whatever style of wedding you prefer, I'm with you every step of the way! Whatever your story, I come smiling, without templates, and with eyes and ears open. I arrive at every meeting with excitement, enthusiasm and creativity to craft your dream ceremony,

 

Click here to read some more reviews from my couples!

"We couldn't have chosen a better celebrant. Your words were magic"

 

Josh and Beth (elopement) - Swinton Park, Masham

What does a humanist wedding ceremony typically include?

 

Your wedding ceremony can be anything between 25-45 minutes. However long you choose it to be, your family and friends will learn your story, understand your values, witness your promises, learn something new about you both, enjoy the journey and really, truly celebrate your love by the time you walk back down the aisle as newly-weds.. 

I can help you decide what will work best for you, or you can come armed with anything you want to include. You can invite contributions from family and friends, or I can do all the writing and all the talking! There is no standard ceremony. I work with you in any way you want!

 

Click here to see what your ceremony could include and some answers to FAQs, or click on the Ceremonies tab to see a collection of wedding music, non-religious wedding readings, symbolic acts and wedding vows styles. 

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"Thank you once again for performing such a beautiful ceremony for us. When Paul and I reflect on the day, it is the part we love and talk about the most. You are like the Fairy Godmother of Ceremonies! We shared with you our story, and with a little magic and 'Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo' you made all our dreams come true! " -

Hayley and Paul, Skipbridge Country Weddings, York

Whether you're planning a wedding day with over a hundred guests, an intimate affair in your garden or an elopement style wedding, I'm with you all the way. Please have a look around my website and then  get in touch! 

 

I'd love to hear from you and am very happy to have a no-obligation Zoom or phone call.

I was very excited to be asked by BBC Look North to talk on telly about the national rise in demand for humanist weddings in Yorkshire! Check it out!

What exactly is a humanist wedding ceremony?

 

A humanist ceremony is a religion-free, story-led ceremony, written especially for you by a professional celebrant like me, who's been trained and accredited by the human rights charity, Humanists UK.

 

Humanist wedding ceremonies have been around for over 100 years, but with huge support from the wedding industry, they're bang on trend and becoming more and more popular! Photographers, venues and photographers LOVE them because they are so engaging and so personalised! And because your wedding ceremony is religion-free, it's about you and your story so it's inclusive for every single one of your guests. 

 

Why choose me as your wedding celebrant?

 

Every celebrant has their own personality, style of interviewing, writing and presenting,  On one of the best days of your life, it's important for you to choose someone who's right for you, whose work you like the look of, who has great reviews, and on whom you can depend. As a professional writer, ex event manager and storyteller, with over 100 humanist wedding ceremonies under my belt, I can share your past, your present and your future with your guests in a way that will have everyone buzzing! Guaranteed! The best thing to do to get the measure of me is to watch a few of the videos on my website, and read some reviews from couples.

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"The ceremony was so meaningful to us both, it suited us as a couple down to the ground. I’m so grateful to Rachael for doing an incredible job and I would 100% recommend her without reservation - what a wonderful thing to be able to do for others on the most special day of their lives. We can’t thank you enough. A star!"

- Ruth and Dave, Harrogate wedding

Below is another gorgeous video highlights reel from one of my wedding ceremonies. Sound on! Thank you to Sabah, Neal and Midgely Wedding Films.

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OK. I'm In! What's your availability and how do I book you?

I'd really love to hear from you. I am nearly fully booked for 2024 but I do have a few dates left towards the end of the year, or earlier, for exceptional circumstances - please do ask.

 

I'm now taking bookings for 2024 and 2025 so please do have a look around my website, and ping me an email or pick up the phone. Jump on board - you'll absolutely love it!

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“Thank you for putting together and delivering our ceremony – it was perfect for us and we absolutely loved it. It was the best way to kick off the day and was everything we wanted it to be.” 

 

Laura and Karl – Ripley Castle wedding

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