Hayley and Rik’s Humanist Wedding at Dunglass Estate

Hayley and Rik’s story was dramatic and romantic, a nine year journey from teenage flirtation through separation, reconcilation, and family losses that culminated in the giving of a ring in the very bar where they had first met.

It had its comic moments too. The engagement ring was too small, but Rik was determined to make it fit and with the aid of some lip balm it eventually did. Not long afterwards, Hayley’s finger turned a deep shade of purple and she had to go to hospital to have the ring removed…

But all’s well that ends well, and in October 2010, they decided that in July 2012, they would come up to Scotland and marry in a humanist ceremony at the lovely Dunglass Estate at Cockburnspath just below The Southern Upland Way. That was when we first spoke, and over the intervening months, we met and talked and emailed until they’d created the perfect ceremony.

The weather was kind, so they married by the loch, and there were lots of readings and songs, including the Edwin Muir poem, “The Confirmation” read by Rik’s sister Abi, and a wonderful song called ‘Blue Skies’ from Hayley’s dad, who strums a mean guitar.

It was a lovely, heart-felt wedding. When they sent me these photos, Hayley and Rik wrote
Thank you so much for marrying us and making our ceremony so humorous, yet solemn and honest. Your help and advice since we first met you over two years ago has been invaluable, and you really instilled in us the importance of the words and that the sentiments of ceremony should reflect us and no one else. Everyone thought you were an excellent celebrant and read our words so beautifully. 

I always suggest to couples that immediately after the ceremony, they should go off and have five minutes together as husband and wife before they rejoin the wedding party; no photographers, no parents, just them.

Rik and Hayley took my advice, and when they walked away from the loch, they just kept walking, across the lawn, up a hill, and vanished into the distance. As they wrote, “We’re sorry we didn’t say goodbye properly. The day before and the morning itself had been really overwhelming and that moment together was much needed!”

No apologies required – it was a pleasure xxx

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