A major reform of wedding laws is to be announced in Monday's budget to help couples cut the cost of getting married.
Chancellor Phillip Hammond is expected to announce plans to allow weddings in England and Wales to take place outdoors for the first time.
The existing regulations on wedding venues – which are now over 180 years old – stipulate that weddings must take place in solid structures which have a permanent roof. Consequently, couples can't get married in England and Wales under a marquee, in their garden or on the beach.
The regulations also state that weddings can't take place in a space where food or drink could be served either before or after the ceremony. This effectively prevents the vast majority of pubs and restaurants from applying to join the 7,500 venues in England and Wales which are currently licensed to host wedding ceremonies.
On Monday, the government is set to announce that it has asked the Law Commission to explore ways of relaxing these rules without damaging the dignity of a typical wedding ceremony.
"While the laws around who can get married have evolved substantially in recent years, the laws on how and where marriages must take place have remained largely unchanged since 1836," a Treasury spokesperson told The Guardian. "This review will help the law keep pace with modern Britain, while helping people keep the cost of living down."
Outdoor weddings are already possible in Scotland, where couples have more freedom when it comes to choosing where they say their vows.
There's no doubt that couples all over the UK could use some extra help when it comes to wedding planning on a budget. A report published in July found that the average cost of a wedding is now a hefty £30,000, which represents a 12% rise year-on-year.
Couples spend an average of £4,500 on venue hire, a figure which could certainly be reduced by offering more choice over where to hold the formal wedding ceremony. The cost of transporting guests from a registry office to the reception venue could also be saved if more reception venues were able to host the formal ceremony.