St Mary and St Margaret Church

Life Events

Our beautiful church is a popular venue for celebrating marriage and baptisms as well as for more solemn events. If you want to find out how to marry, have your child christened or celebrate another important life event in our church, please read the information in the relevant section to ensure that you understand and can meet the necessary criteria.

Please note that all weddings which take place in our church are according to the rites and ceremonies of the Church of England, so the Rector or an authorised Church of England minister will need to conduct the ceremony. We are not affliated with Castle Bromwich Hall Hotel which is a licensed venue for civil ceremonies. 

If you wish to book a bapstim or a wedding our coordinator, Shirley Middlemass is usually available to speak to you on Saturday mornings between 10.00 am and 10.45 am in church.

FAQs on Weddings

Can I get married in St Mary and St Margaret?

An engaged couple are welcome to be married in St Mary and St Margret (without being entered on the Electoral Roll)  if just one of the following conditions applies: 
  • One of you was baptised in the parish; or
  • One of you has been confirmed and the confirmation has been entered in a church register book belonging to the parish, (this would have been done on the basis that the person concerned was prepared for confirmation in the parish); or
  • One of you has lived in the parish for 6 months or more.
  • One of you has at any time habitually attended public worship in the parish for at least 6 months;
  • One of your parents has lived in the parish for 6 months or more in your lifetime.
  • One of your parents has regularly attended public worship in the parish for 6 months or more in your lifetime.
  • Or your parents or grandparents were married in the parish.
If I meet one of the conditions what happens next?

a. Banns.  If the requirements are satisfied Banns can be called using that Church as the home parish for the person with the Qualifying Connection.  

b.  Licence. A Bishop’s Licence (Common Licence) can be issued on the same basis.     
If a “qualifying connection” is to be used to obtain a Bishop’s Licence then the evidence must be presented to the Diocesan Registry together with an Affidavit sworn on Oath that the contents are true and correct.   

What are Banns? 

Banns announce in church your intention to marry. If anyone has a reason why the marriage may not lawfully take place, this should be raised during the calling of the Banns.

I'm not Christened, can I still get married in church?

Yes, you can get married in church if you are not Christened.

I'm divorced, can I get married in church?

The Church of England agreed in 2002 that divorced people could remarry in church under certain circumstances. We believe that marriage is for life, but also recognise that sadly, some marriages do fail. Some Clergy will not marry divorcees.That is not the case in this Parish but you need to speak to the Rector about the circumstances under which the previous marriage broke down.

FAQs on Godparents for Baptisms

What does being a godparent involve?

As a godparent, you have a special role. It's about helping a child to come to know God, encouraging them in their spiritual life and supporting them in their membership of the local church. You will be expected to be attend the child's baptism, where you will make promises to help to bring them up in the Christian faith. It's a role that will develop over time, as your godchild grows up and develops their own faith.

It feels like a big responsibility . . .I'm not sure I can make these decisions.

It is. Have a look at the questions you will answer in the baptism service. Take some time to think through the commitments you make when you answer them. But don't forget that the Church can support you in encouraging and praying for your godchild.

What if I've not thought much about my faith and don't go to church regularly?

Most people have doubts at some stage, and no one's asking you to be perfect. However, being asked to be a godparent is a good opportunity to think about your own faith. Godparents must have been baptized themselves, and it's best if you are also confirmed. Baptism or confirmation preparation can help you with your own questions about the Christian faith. It will also help you to support your godchild in developing their own faith. If you have any questions at all, why not speak to your parish priest or another Christian you know.

Does being a godparent mean I'm a legal guardian as well?

No. Your role as godparent is a spiritual one - to encourage and pray for your godchild. Perhaps you will be asked to be a guardian too, but that is separate from being a godparent.

I'm worried about doing the right thing on the day.

The priest will make sure the service goes smoothly and that everyone knows what to do and when. Why not ask if there's a rehearsal or any other preparation you could get involved in?

What should I give as a present?

The most important gifts you can give your godchild are your time, presence and prayers, but you will probably also want to mark the baptism or confirmation by giving a special gift. Godparents don't have to buy expensive gifts. A simple, meaningful present is a good choice - maybe something to be used at the baptism, or a gift to be kept for later. Here are some suggestions. You'll find many of these at Christian bookshops and cathedral gift shops. Or ask your minister for details of local suppliers. Bibles:There are many different editions of the Bible. Some have pictures and simple language especially for children. Some have presentation boxes. It's worth asking the parents if there's a version they prefer. Perhaps you'll decide on a children's Bible at baptism and an adult edition as a confirmation present. Books of Bible stories: There are some lovely illustrated books of Bible stories for children. Why not build up a series over the next few years? You can always ask bookshops for advice on age-appropriate titles. Books of prayers:You'll find a wide variety available, including illustrated and gift book styles.

What happens in the baptism service?

Baptisms take place either during the Sunday morning service, so the church congregation can welcome the child into the Church or during the bi-monthly afternoon baptism service. When it comes to the baptism itself, the priest asks the parents and godparents to bring the child to the front of the church or gather around the font. Before the baptism, the priest asks you to declare that you intend to do your best as a godparent. The priest asks you to say that you're 'prepared to walk with [the child] in the way of Christ' and will 'help them take their place within the life and worship of Christ's Church'. Remember, if you've any doubts you can always discuss them with your priest.

Building a relationship with your godchild

You're a godparent. Now what? Both you and your godchild will get far more out of this relationship if you can keep it alive. Children love to get letters, postcards and emails. Why not send a card or small gift on the anniversary of the baptism, to show you care about them and to remind you both of what's special about this relationship. Keep in touch regularly as they grow up. Perhaps when they're older, they'll want to ask questions about faith or Christian life. If you've kept in touch, they might be able to ask you - and that's something special

(Content adapted and reproduced from by permission of the Church of England)