A WHOPPING half a million guests will miss out on attending a wedding due to coronavirus tomorrow on what is usually the busiest day of the year for couples tying the knot.
Over 4,452 ceremonies will not take place in the UK – impacting almost 350,000 workers within the industry.
A total of 107,000 weddings have been postponed since lockdown, despite the sector being worth £14.7bn to the economy.
Nina Beer, wedding coordinator and campaigner, said: “The wedding sector was one of the first impacted and we’re now one of the last to open
“Hundreds of thousands of businesses, individuals and livelihoods are affected and these numbers don’t show the real human cost behind the loss of the summer wedding season.”
The sector is mainly female-led and is made up of thousands of small businesses.
But with the summer season virtually over and the vast majority of business for the rest of this year postponed, Nina warns that even the most robust businesses are struggling to survive a season without revenue.
Nina said: “On Saturday, I should have been coordinating two weddings and working with more than 50 suppliers just on the day itself.
“That’s all gone, for this Saturday and for countless others.
“The irony is that we’ve not lost the business – it’s moved to next year in the vast majority of cases – but the sector faces months with no income before we get to those 2021 dates and my business needs to still be there.”
In Cheshire, the team at Peckforton Castle should have been working on their 65th back-to-back wedding.
In Oxfordshire, wedding celebrant Tamryn Settle should have been conducting her last wedding of the summer and in Surrey, LaToya & Ajay Patel of SW Events should have been preparing for an Asian wedding for 300 guests.
But these suppliers won’t be working this weekend, Nina said.
A survey conducted by the #WhatAboutWeddings campaigners highlighted the fact that if no financial support is received this year, almost a quarter of wedding businesses are predicted to close.
Bride-to-be Andera Thomas, who was due to get married on Saturday, explains: “August bank holiday Saturday is basically gold dust in the wedding world and we were so happy to have secured our dream venues, and all of the extremely talented suppliers we wanted.
“Then Covid happened, our carefully saved money no longer felt safe.
“Although we’ve now postponed our date we held on for the longest time in hope.
“Of course everyone’s safety is of the highest priority but a close second really should be some clarity of what we’re looking to achieve in the near future so we can start to plan.”
The #WhatAboutWeddings campaign gives awareness to the critical need for financial assistance.
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