Weddings at All Saints’ Chapel, Wardour –Guidance Sheet

1.       Weddings are joyous occasions requiring a lot of planning, both from the Religious requirements being met in full and the practical aspects of a Wardour wedding being addressed. This guidance sheet is designed to help the couple being married navigate all these hurdles successfully. All contact details are given at the end of this guidance sheet.


2.       The Canon Law of the Catholic Church requires that a marriage normally takes place in the Parish Church of either party, if both are Catholic, or in the Parish Church of the Catholic party, if it is a ‘mixed’ marriage.  As All Saints’ Chapel, Wardour, is not a parish church, it follows that for a marriage at Wardour two permissions may be required – one from the Parish Priest of either the bride or groom, or both, and one from the Parish Priest who is responsible for all the liturgical arrangements at Wardour.


3.       At the very beginning of the journey a couple wishing to be married at Wardour should make an appointment with the Parish Priest of Tisbury and Wardour, resident in Salisbury, or the Wardour Deacon to meet in person and explain their reasons for wishing to be married there. Some connection to Wardour is essential – merely wishing to be married in a beautiful Chapel in lovely countryside will not suffice.  No date can be set until the Parish Priest or Deacon is satisfied that the couple are free to marry and that they are available to celebrate the wedding. The couple must have obtained permission to be married outside their own parish – this must come from the Parish Priest of either party, if both are Catholic, or from the Parish Priest of the Catholic party, if it is a ‘mixed’ marriage. If the couple wish to invite a visiting priest, such as a family friend, to marry them then the Parish Priest must give his approval.



4.       Before any marriage can take place the couple must be in contact with a priest who will

   a) prepare their marriage documents and

   b) arrange marriage preparation for them.  The latter he will either do himself or he will ask the couple to attend a course of preparation.  This priest will normally be the Parish Priest from whom permission to be married at Wardour was obtained. 


       5. Documents like baptismal certificates (which for a Catholic also serves as a Freedom to Marry certificate) may have to be obtained from afar, so the couple should be in contact with their priest at least six months before their intended marriage.  A non-Catholic will be required to produce a statement that s/he has not previously been married.  The marriage documents should be forwarded to the Parish Priest in Salisbury in good time before the wedding.  If they are prepared outside Clifton  Diocese, they will have to be approved by at least two Diocesan authorities, before being sent onto Salisbury; if they have not been received the Parish Priest cannot allow the wedding to proceed.


6.  The normal requirements of Civil Law must also be fulfilled.  Wardour Chapel is not licensed for weddings.  This means that each party must give notice in their local Register Office and in due course collect the appropriate Certificate.  The physical presence of a Registrar, normally based in Salisbury, will be necessary on the wedding date to witness the signing of the Registers, so the couple must contact the Salisbury Register Office in good time to make the necessary arrangements.  When the marriage has taken place, this will be entered in both Church and Civil Registers, and the Registrar will issue a Civil certificate.


7.   Music.  There is no regular choir so the couple should arrange their own choir or soloist if so wished. The official Chapel organist is appointed by the Chapel Trustees.  Their fee is £175.  If an alternative organist is requested, or some other source of music is used, the Chapel organist attracts a fee of £100 as required by their contract with the Chapel.


       8.  The couple must consult the Priest about planning the Marriage Ceremony and an Order of  Service.  If the Parish Priest or Deacon is not to officiate at the marriage, then the priest or deacon  who does must be approved by him.


9.    Rehearsals in the Chapel must be arranged with the Parish Priest so that the Chapel may be opened and closed at appropriate times.  The person usually opening/closing the Chapel will be Mrs Josephine Connolly. An initial fee of £40 will be due to her for this, and £30 for each subsequent opening/closing.


10.   Mrs Sarah Howard is available to advise on flowers. The couple may of course have a friend to do the flowers which is perfectly acceptable.  The rule is always less rather than more as the Chapel is itself very ornate.  Only one free-standing arrangement may be placed in the sanctuary, on the left-hand side, near but not obstructing the lectern (which must not be moved).  The other side of the sanctuary must be kept clear for the registration.  Other arrangements may be placed in the Chapel porch. 


11.   The grounds outside the Chapel are private.  They do not belong to Wardour Chapel Trust.  It is absolutely forbidden to throw confetti or the like.


12.   Parking is very limited in the immediate vicinity of the Chapel, and because the grounds are private all parking arrangements are coordinated by the Estate Manager, Mr David Howell. On the day the majority of the cars will turn right to the lower car park.  This will leave space in front of the main building for residents, the disabled, and the bridal party.  Mr Howell will have been notified in advance of the date and time of your wedding and of the rehearsal.


      13. Summary of Fees which must all be paid in advance.

Wardour Chapel Fee

Charge of £800

Registrar Fee

To be advised


£175 or a fee of £100 is payable if couple bring their own organist


£40 for initial Chapel opening (£30 per opening thereafter)


To be arranged with ushers at the rehersal as directed by estate manager;


otherwise £80 for two car parkers arranged by the estate manager

Chapel Cleaning (before and after)

Charge of £30

Celebrating Priest or Deacon

At discretion (suggest £150)

Parish Priest of Wardour

At discretion (suggest £100)

Priest for instruction

As agreed by instructing priest


14.  Contact details.

       Parish Priest. Fr Anthony Paris.

      Salisbury Parish Office

      Deacon Michael Hughes of Wardour.

     Tisbury Parish Office.

     Chapel Trustee Nick Wright. Nick is the Chapel Trustee responsible for coordinating all practical aspects of a Wardour wedding including confirming the Chapel is available. He is your first point of contact after approval in principle for the wedding has been granted by the Parish Priest. He can answer most of your practical, as opposed to Religious queries, so please do get in touch, however trivial your query.


Approved by the Parish Priest and Trustees. 1 March 2023