I’ve been to a fair few weddings in my time, including my own. I’ve sat in cold churches and depressing registry offices; I’ve looked over lakes at stately homes while vows were exchanged and watched as a Caribbean sun sank behind a white painted arbour (I wasn’t invited to that one but still…).
And this weekend I went to a wedding where the Vet was Maid of Honour and looked stunning (I’m her dad, that’s allowed) though the Bride was, of course, the star in female glamour stakes. It was held in St Lawrence Jewry, a Wren Church next to the Guildhall in central London. It was one of the more enjoyable celebrations, in part because both Bride and Groom are committed to their faith and for a significant part of the congregation every word of the ceremony carried a deeper meaning than at a lot of weddings I’ve attended.
I’m not of any religion and tend to watch at these events at one remove but you do get swept up in it all, especially when there is genuine enjoyment all around. And standing there, rather ignoring the words and allowing the music to take me along, I had to acknowledge, somewhat to my own surprise given where I stand on, that the best setting for a wedding is undoubtedly the ancient English church. There’s something in the timelessness of it all, the ooze of tradition, the instant respect for the space, the filtered light, the library-like whispers, the tie biting at my neck, the vaulted sweeping harmonies, the uncomfortable seats and the overall grandiosity of it all that draws you in.
Funny old world.