Brian and Holly have had to make some very difficult decisions, but they have done so for the best of everyone.

They are only welcoming guests and service providers who have been fully-vaccinated against Covid-19 to the group events celebrating their marriage. This condition applies to all groups who are unvaccinated, including children. On the day of the events, they are also asking guests to take responsibility for testing themselves with a free, widely-available test, and to stay away from events if they are demonstrating any symptoms of Covid-19. They explain more below:

When planning our marriage, we set two main objectives: to be simple and fun.

The simplest way for us to fulfil our duty to our family, friends and all the people doing their best to provide us with a service during our celebrations is to ensure all reasonable steps are taken to manage all risks to health & safety.

The science says that full vaccination against Covid-19 reduces the risk of transmission through reduced levels of viral load, shorter duration of illness and fewer, less aggressive symptoms. It is reasonable to follow the science.

Starting from that position of clarity and certainty simplifies the invitation process and puts less pressure on any social distancing measures we may still need to encourage at our events. It is at least simple, but not fun. A wedding where anyone gets Covid-19 is the complete opposite of fun.

We will very gladly roll back from that position and notify everyone involved if the science changes.

Brian’s cousin is one of the world’s leading academics on the efficacy of wearing masks to limit the spread of airbourne diseases.

Although we recognise the benefits of two metre distancing and mask wearing, we would rather have an event policy that reduces reliance on those social distancing measures so people can choose to meet, shake hands, hug, kiss, and most importantly, dance together in as low risk an environment as reasonably practicable. Alcohol reduces people’s ability to socially distance successfully. That said, we absolutely welcome and will reasonably support any guests who wish to embrace social distancing measures – including wearing a mask – as additional protection for themselves and others in support of our vaccination policy, but not as an alternative.

We are in no way perfect, we don’t know all the science, and we recognise we will make mistakes, which we will try to correct in response to facts. However, we are people who need to feel like we’re trying to do the right thing – especially when the right thing is so easily available to us. That sense of social duty and pressure upon us on our wedding day will be heightened.

It is not just “our day”.

Our guests will include elderly and clinically vulnerable people, and we hope pregnant women too. Although those groups are at risk from the most severe symptoms, we want to reduce risk for all guests and service providers from even mild symptoms and the consequences that result.

Any guests and service providers wishing to celebrate with us at one of our group events will need to have commenced vaccination well within the timeframe for the event they wish to attend. Hence we are giving people as much notice as possible.

The three main vaccinations currently available in the UK and Europe require up to a 12 week lag time between first and second dose and then a period of up to 15 days to achieve optimum effectiveness. For these vaccines, the latest possible date to commence vaccination will be the 15th of January 2022 and to receive the second dose to complete the vaccination process by 15th April 2022. (The Jannsen / Johnson & Johnson vaccine requires just a single dose and then 14 days to achieve optimum effectiveness. It is not currently available in the UK.) Obviously we need to know whether you wish to attend any of our wedding events well before then.

If you will not be fully vaccinated to attend any of our events, we would still love to meet you personally another time. Just click here to set a date.

Holly and Brian are extremely disappointed at having to exclude anyone from their group celebrations. However, they hope you can take time to understand their reasons, appreciate the difficulties they face, and their attempt to do the right thing. Please send any questions or feedback on the policy here.