Four lessons for your wedding from the Coronation

What a Coronation weekend – despite the weather on two days out of three. The official festivities included something for most tastes. There was pomp, solemn ceremony and grand processions on the day itself. On the following day, there were street parties and a star-studded concert. And then on the Bank Holiday Monday, you could volunteer in the Big Help Out.

Whatever your views on the monarchy, it’s fair to say that your wedding echoes certain aspects of the Coronation. So I think we can draw some useful lessons we can draw.

One. Like any ceremony, both the Coronation and your wedding are theatre. There are a few key players, each with places to stand and lines to say, and an invited audience witnesses the ceremony. Everyone involved in the Coronation – the troops, the musicians, the royal family themselves – planned and practised their contributions for weeks before the big day.

Since I daresay you’ll want everything to go off without a hitch, plan your day in detail. Find out and practise what you’re going to say out loud, and attend a rehearsal, if offered, at your venue or church. I always offer a pre-wedding planning meeting to ensure everything goes smoothly when I’m taking the photos that tell the story of your day.

Two. As King Charles did at his Coronation, when you get married you’re entering into a life-long covenant. Witnesses will sign legal documents after you’ve made your vows to confirm that they heard them. So it’s no joking matter. And in that sense, your ceremony is no less important than the Coronation. I know you’ll want everyone to take your commitment to each other as seriously as you do.

Bride signs register as groom looks on

Three. After the solemnities were completed in Westminster Abbey, everyone visibly relaxed. And that’s just what you’ll do. As much as possible, let others manage how the day unfolds – even if you’ve done a lot of the behind-the-scenes planning yourself.

Your bridesmaids can look after your phone and clutch bag during your day if you’re keeping essentials to hand. Ask groomsmen to help with assembling guests for group photos. And if your budget will run to it,  book a child-minding service to look after young children. That way, you and your guests can be fully present with each other. Weddings are often a chance to see people you might not have met for a long time.

Four. Like the royal family did after the Coronation, you’ll pose for formal photos. For your family, your photos matter as a family record. In the years to come, you’ll be able to show generations what people important to you looked like when you got married.

Bride, groom, bridesmaids and ushers on the stairs at the Naval and Military Club

For this reason, I’m always keen to ensure you get all the formal group photos you want. At the time, they might feel like the boring photos you have to gurn your way through because it’s what’s expected. But believe me, they’re the ones people will pore over in years to come!