Couples planning to tie the knot when coronavirus restrictions are eased next month should wash their hands before and after exchanging rings, according to new Government guidance.
The advice for England states that no more than 30 people should attend a marriage or civil partnership from July 4, and social distancing rules must be obeyed. As part of the lockdown imposed in March, all social events were stopped – including weddings, baptisms and other ceremonies.
Receptions or parties after weddings should not take place, but small celebrations – with groups of up to two households indoors, or up to six people from different households outdoors – will be permitted.
Services should be concluded in the “shortest reasonable time”, and the guidance states: “Where the exchanging of rings is required or desired for the solemnisation of the marriage or the formation of the civil partnership, hands should be washed before and after.
“The rings should be handled by as few people as possible.”
It is understood that couples who do not live together before a wedding ceremony would be able to exchange rings and kiss, despite the social distancing rules.