Favourite wedding readings from our real couples on English Wedding

Published by Claire Gould on

We’re here to help you choose the perfect wedding readings for your ceremony! A romantic reading can add so much to a heartfelt service, and we’ve picked out a few of our top favourites to inspire you.

Pash & Sean – photographer credit: True Love Optics

Touched by an Angel by Maya Angelou – our stunning couple Pash & Sean chose this gorgeous reading about love and it’s beautiful.

Touched by an Angel

We, unaccustomed to courage
exiles from delight
live coiled in shells of loneliness
until love leaves its high holy temple
and comes into our sight
to liberate us into life.

Love arrives
and in its train come ecstasies
old memories of pleasure
ancient histories of pain.
Yet if we are bold,
love strikes away the chains of fear
from our souls.

We are weaned from our timidity
In the flush of love’s light
we dare be brave
And suddenly we see
that love costs all we are
and will ever be.
Yet it is only love
which sets us free.

Fi & Ed chose two really special readings for their wedding: Wild Awake by Hilary T Smith and Johnny Cash’s famous love letter to June Carter. 

Wild Awake

People are like cities: We all have alleys and gardens and secret rooftops and places where daisies sprout between the sidewalk cracks, but most of the time all we let each other see is is a postcard glimpse of a skyline or a polished square. Love lets you find those hidden places in another person, even the ones they didn’t know were there, even the ones they wouldn’t have thought to call beautiful themselves. Wild Awake, by Hilary T Smith – source: One Fab Day

Neil & Paul – Bloomwood Photography

Neil & Paul’s wedding readings were He’s Not Perfect – Bob Marley and From Beginning to End – Robert Fulghum.

He’s Not Perfect

He’s not perfect. You aren’t either, and the two of you will never be perfect. But if he can make you laugh at least once, causes you to think twice, and if he admits to being human and making mistakes, hold onto him and give him the most you can. He isn’t going to quote poetry, he’s not thinking about you every moment, but he will give you a part of him that he knows you could break. Don’t hurt him, don’t change him, and don’t expect for more than he can give. Don’t analyze. Smile when he makes you happy, yell when he makes you mad, and miss him when he’s not there. Love hard when there is love to be had. Because perfect guys don’t exist, but there’s always one guy that is perfect for you. Source: Love My Dress

Max & Malissa – Tracey Warbey Photography

Max & Malissa had ‘The One‘ and ‘Once In A Lifetime’ read during their wedding ceremony. The wordings are beautiful:

The One

When the one whose hand you’re holding, Is the one who holds your heart.
When the one whose eyes you gaze into, Gives your hopes and dreams their start.
When the one you think of first and last, Is the one who holds you tight.
And the things you plan together, Make the whole world seem just right.
When the one whom you believe in, Puts their faith and trust in you.
You’ve found the one and only love, You’ll share your whole life through.

Eleanor & James (their cake is our header image at the top of the post!) both by – Martin Dabek Photography

Eleanor & James chose ‘A Vow’, by Wendy Cope – it’s another heartfelt reading for any couple:

A Vow

I cannot promise never to be angry;
I cannot promise always to be kind.
You know what you are taking on, my darling –
It’s only at the start that love is blind.
And yet I’m still the one you want to be with
And you’re the one for me – of that I’m sure.
You are my closest friend, my favourite person,
The lover and the home I’ve waited for.
I cannot promise that I will deserve you
From this day on. I hope to pass that test.
I love you and I want to make you happy.
I promise I will do my very best.

Carly & Dan chose two readings: Apache Blessing, and A Lovely Love Story by Edward Monkton. “We wanted one that was thoughtful and more traditional, and one that was more playful, that would make people smile.”

Andy & Olivia – Damien Vickers Photography

Andy & Olivia’s readings included Fidelity by D.H. Lawrence. The ending is especially magical, perfect for their sunrise wedding ceremony.


Man and woman are like the earth, that brings forth flowers
in summer, and love, but underneath is rock.
Older than flowers, older than ferns, older than foraminiferae,
older than plasm altogether is the soul underneath.
And when, throughout all the wild chaos of love
slowly a gem forms, in the ancient, once-more-molten rocks
of two human hearts, two ancient rocks,
a man’s heart and a woman’s,
that is the crystal of peace, the slow hard jewel of trust,
the sapphire of fidelity.
The gem of mutual peace emerging from the wild chaos of love.

Lots of couples are choosing their own readings from literature, and even film. Meg and Jack chose a piece from Tolkien; we’ve heard so many couples having readings from Philip Pullman and other authors… and surprisingly, sci-fi and fantasy writers are leading the way on literary wedding readings!

Hannah & Zak – Martin Dabek Photography

Hannah & Zak had three wedding readings. They were: 1) He Never Leaves the Seat Up, 2) The Velveteen Rabbit and 3) Us Two (Winnie the Pooh). They told us, “each was read beautifully and were very touching – definitely recommend having readings!”

Claire Gould

Claire spends her days writing - either in beautiful calligraphy or online. She lives on the edge of the English Lake District only minutes away from the beach, where she loves to escape and unwind. Claire's calligraphy can be found at www.byMoonandTide.com. Claire launched the English Wedding Blog in November 2009 - it's been a top 10 UK wedding blog ever since, with a regional focus we hope you LOVE.


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