Church Of England Wants More Off-Island Wedding Tourism

Bryher All Saints Church

Bryher All Saints Church

Off-island weddings should be part of our tourism strategy. That’s the view of Scilly’s Anglican chaplain, Canon Paul Miller, who wants to encourage more people to take their vows here.

Paul says many mainlanders don’t realise that they can have their service in Scilly even if they don’t live here. Churches are currently the only off-island wedding venues.

He’s working with the tourism body, the Islands’ Partnership, to spread the word.

He’s had some enquiries after they added website information and there’ll be a paragraph in the 2014 brochure too.

And Paul believes weddings can boost tourism across Scilly.

He says the Anglican church in the Cypriot town of Paphos performs around 150 weddings a year, working with tour operators.

Couples need to meet a seven-day residential qualification to get a marriage licence in Scilly.

That’s arranged through the Council registry team, but can form part of the holiday. And once the paperwork is completed they can marry up to a year later.

Another option is a civil partnership on the mainland followed by a blessing on the off-islands.

That doesn’t need the residency qualification.