Frequently Asked Questions

What is a celebrant?

A celebrant is a freelance equivalent of a marriage registrar. We can conduct any ceremony you like, anywhere, any time.

If it’s not a licensed premises... how will my marriage be legal?

Because you’ll go to the Register Office to do the legal bit either before or after your ceremony with us. You can do it any time before or after, it doesn’t have to be the same day or the day before, but whenever is convenient to you.

Will I have to pay twice doing it this way?

Yes, but because the basic legal ceremony at the Register Office only costs £46 per couple plus £70 to give notice, and Kate and Kate’s fees are lower than the Registrar’s fees, you still end up paying less.

How do I do the legal bit?

You will need to contact your nearest authorising Register Office and make a date – in East Sussex this is Hastings. In Kent it is Cantebury, Tunbridge Wells, Maidstone or Ramsgate.

The East Sussex Register Office is now located at Hastings Town Hall. The £46 ceremonies are available on Tuesdays at 9.30am and 10am. The fee is £46 and certificates are £4 per copy – these fees are taken when you make your booking. To make your booking you should call 0345 60 80 198 – select option 1, then option 1 again.

The ceremony itself is performed in a regular office space. You will receive a basic ceremony where you must say the declaration (that you are free to marry) and the contracts (that you agree to marry) and you have the option to exchange rings if you choose to. Two registrars will look after you and do the usual pre-ceremony check. You must provide your own two witnesses.

These ceremonies will get booked up quickly – make sure you get in to arrange this as soon as you can to avoid disappointment. Once this is booked you can make your appointment to give Notice to Marry.

What is Giving Notice to Marry?

This is the civil equivalent of having your banns read. It’s an appointment with the Registrar to show ID to prove you are who you say you are and, that you are legally free to marry (eg if you’ve been married before you need to show your Decree Absolute). You can give Notice up to a year before your legal ceremony and as little as a month and half before. We recommend giving Notice to Marry about three months before your legal ceremony.

Do I have to do the legal bit before my wedding celebration, or can I do it afterwards?

You can do it before or after. Doesn’t make any difference which.

Where can I have my marriage celebration?

Anywhere you like. Because it’s not a legal ceremony there are no restrictions. So in a marquee, on the beach, up a tree… anything goes!

Can I have religious content?

Yes.

Can I have music?

Yes, whatever you like you can have – even a sing-a-long and dancing girls!

Can I have readings?

Yes.

Can I write/say my own vows?

Yes.

Will my guests know it’s not a 'real' wedding?

No. Not unless you want them to.

Who exactly are Kate and Kate?

Kate Tym and Kate Dyer are former East Sussex Marriage Registrars who have now gone freelance as celebrants. They have over ten years’ experience of conducting weddings and are professional, enthusiastic and fun – and… not a pair of sensible shoes between them! Because of their Registration background they are not only able to conduct a fantastic, bespoke, ceremony for you but they also know all the legal stuff too!

Will Kate and Kate marry people anywhere in the country?

Kate and Kate are based in Battle and St Leonards. They are happy to travel all over the country given the right circumstances.

Do Kate and Kate both perform the ceremony together?

No, unlike Ant and Dec, you will get one or other of us… FYI Kate Tym is the blonde and Kate Dyer is the reddish head -although her hair colour changes as often as the weather.

How do I book Kate or Kate to conduct my wedding?

Either email us or give us a ring. It’s helpful if you have a venue and date in mind, but we also have loads of suggestions of fabulous venues from glamping to tipis to the bandstand in the park! We ask a £50 deposit to secure the date and then we’ll get the ball rolling with a questionnaire to find out all about you. Our ceremony scripts are bespoke so, you can see and approve the script in plenty of time before the big day.

We got married abroad… can we re-do our wedding ceremony for our friends at home?

Yes, you can. As you’ve already done the legal bit abroad, you can do whatever kind of ceremony you like back in Blighty!