A thrifty couple may have celebrated the UK’s cheapest wedding by spending just £300 on their big day – including a £10 eBay dress and Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s discount on their Brewers Fayre dinner.
Childhood sweethearts Chelsea-Marie and Hayden Davies, from Glastonbury, Somerset, had originally planned for a bigger £1,000 celebration in July with a DJ, photo booths and kids’ entertainment booked for the reception.
But when coronavirus struck their plans were thwarted and the devastated duo were forced to cancel the wedding.
Chelsea-Marie and Hayden Davies, both 25 and from Glastonbury, Somerset, decided to do their wedding on a budget after they were forced to cancel the lavish £1,000 affair they had planned for July
To save the pennies, the couple bought their outfits from high street retailers and eBay and enjoyed their wedding breakfast with their two guests at a nearby Brewers Fayre
They even saved on their transport by hitching free lifts from their two wedding guests, instead of forking out for an expensive wedding car to take them from the ceremony to the Brewers Fayre
As lockdown restrictions eased they decided on an intimate August ceremony and full-time mum Chelsea-Marie said ‘I do’ to British Army soldier Hayden wearing a £10 eBay dress.
Budget wedding day – total costs
Notice of marriage – £70 (£35 each)
Taunton registry office for basic ceremony – £57
Wedding dress – £10 (eBay)
Veil – £1.50 (eBay)
Chelsea-Marie’s shoes – already owned
Chelsea-Marie’s gold wedding ring – £80
Hayden’s gold wedding ring – £30 (eBay)
Hayden’s suit – £30 (Peacocks)
Hayden’s shoes – £20 (Sports Direct)
Chelsea-Marie’s hair and make-up – Free (done by sister)
Wedding transport – Free (each got lifts from friends/family)
Wedding breakfast – Brewers Fayre meals – smothered chicken (£9.79, with discount £4.90) Lasagne £9.39 (with discount £4.70)
TOTAL = £308.10
Following the ceremony, the couple, both 25, enjoyed Brewers Fayre meals with their two guests – while taking advantage of the Eat Out to Help Out scheme.
Newlywed Chelsea-Marie claims couples needn’t drain their bank accounts on ‘show off’ weddings and that doing it cheaper is more romantic and less stressful.
Chelsea-Marie said: ‘We decided to have a wedding on a budget because we didn’t want a fuss, we just wanted it to be about us.
‘We talked about it and we’d come to an agreement where we just wanted it to be small, intimate and romantic.
‘It was so much easier, there was less pressure, you weren’t worrying about anything at all, it was just us in the moment just as it’s supposed to be.
‘Really expensive weddings can almost turn into a circus. I’ve spoken to a few people from wedding groups who’ve said they’re struggling to budget on £20,000 and I’m like ‘what?’.
‘Our original plans, a registry office wedding and then a celebration at a Royal British Legion club with a DJ, photo booth and kids entertainment for 115 guests was going to come to just over £1,000.
‘What we ended up doing came to just £300.
‘As the wedding was on a Wednesday we were even able to take advantage of the Eat Out to Help Out scheme and got 50% off our meals.
‘My sister told me about it the day before the wedding, so thanks to Rishi our day was even cheaper.’
The childhood sweethearts, pictured together at 18, were devastated when they had to cancel their July wedding due to coronavirus, and desperate to tie the knot they decided to do it on a budget instead
The couple said ‘I do’ in a local registry office in August, with full-time mum Chelsea-Marie wearing a £10 wedding dress she found on eBay as well as a £1.50 veil from the online retailer
The newlyweds hope to show other couples looking to get married that they needn’t drain their bank accounts on ‘show off’ weddings and that doing it cheaper is more romantic and less stressful
When lockdown restrictions started easing, Chelsea-Marie and Hayden decided to go ahead with their wedding at Taunton Registry Office on August 19.
The pair opted for a simple 30-minute ceremony, low-key celebrations afterwards and only had Chelsea-Marie’s sister Catrina Guest and her boyfriend James Piper in attendance as witnesses.
Mindful of keeping costs down, Chelsea-Marie, who is mum to four-year-old Elliot, snapped up a veil for £1.50 on eBay, wore shoes she already owned and had her hair and make-up done by roofer sister Catrina.
Hayden sported a suit from budget retailer Peacocks and finished off the look with £20 shoes from Sports Direct.
After the ceremony, the couple were driven by their two guests to a nearby Brewers Fayre – taking advantage of the government’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme
The couple decided they wanted a ‘no-fuss’ wedding, and instead opted for a small, intimate affair which Chelsea-Marie says was romantic and a lot less pressure. Pictured with their two guests: Chelsea-Marie’s sister Catrina, 35, and her 36-year-old boyfriend James Piper
Chelsea-Marie said: ‘I bought my wedding dress from a Chinese seller on eBay for £10.
‘I was scrolling through for cheap and cheerful wedding dresses, because I didn’t want to spend much.
‘I thought it looked nice and was different, I showed it to Hayden and he liked it too.
‘I didn’t get the chance to try it on beforehand, I was just praying it fit me. When it arrived I tried it on and really liked it.
‘When I turned up at the registry office Hayden’s face lit up, he said I looked beautiful and that he was punching [above his weight].
Shocked to hear some of her friends had spent as much as £20,000 on their weddings, the couple had never planned to spend that much – with a budget of £1,000 for their ceremony they had scheduled for July
The couple’s meal at the local Brewers Fayre in Glastonbury, Somerset, (pictured) came to just £9.60, helped out by Rishi Sunak’s food discounts
‘I didn’t have flowers, I don’t see the point in having them because you’re just going to be faffing about with them when you do your vows.
‘It was a much more intimate and romantic ceremony because there was a lot less pressure and your main concentration isn’t about the guests, it’s about your significant other.
‘It’s solely about you two becoming husband and wife, it’s not this big fancy thing that you have to worry about every little detail being ok.’
After the couple exchanged vows they enjoyed their first meal as man and wife at the Glastonbury branch of Brewers Fayre and feasted on discounted lasagne and chicken dishes.
The quartet then went home and got changed before looking round the town’s shops.
When they realised they could no longer get married in July, they set to work planning their new ceremony – which no longer included the DJ, photo booths and kids’ entertainment booked for the reception like they had originally planned
Instead of celebrating tying the knot at the Royal British Legion with a DJ as they had been planning, they just enjoyed a quiet meal with two guests
Before the coronavirus pandemic hit, the couple had budgeted to spend around £1,000 on their wedding but only ended up spending around £300 in the end – only forking out £110 for their wedding bands
To get to the ceremony at the registry office, Chelsea-Marie got a lift from her sister Catrina, 35, who was also one her wedding guests (left). Chelsea and Hayden (right) said they wanted the day to be as intimate as possible, and will hold a bigger celebration next year
Chelsea-Marie said: ‘We didn’t have anything fancy because we didn’t want an expensive day, that was the whole point of doing it like that, we just wanted it to be intimate.
‘We had dinner, had a drink, went back and got changed and went into town to look at the shops because it was the first time my sister and her boyfriend had visited.
‘We are going to have a reception some time next year for family members to attend to celebrate it because obviously this year we couldn’t.
‘But this was our time, this was for us to become man and wife and we didn’t need an audience.’
Thrifty Chelsea-Marie said she wanted other couples to know they can have an incredibly special day without breaking the bank.
The couple had a 30-minute service at the registry office in Taunton, Somerset, on August 19. Pictured outside in the wet August weather after saying ‘I do’
Chelsea-Marie, mum to four-year-old Elliot, snapped up a veil for £1.50 on eBay, wore shoes she already owned and had her hair and make-up done by roofer sister Catrina
To keep the costs down, Hayden wore a suit from budget retailer Peacocks and finished off the look with £20 shoes from Sports Direct
Chelsea-Marie said: ‘My advice to people would be to not worry about massive things you want just to show off at your wedding, it’s not worth it.
‘The only thing that you’re having a wedding for is to marry the person you love and that is the most important part of it.
‘As long as your wedding’s ok it doesn’t matter how your reception or anything else turns out.
‘Your main priority for having a wedding is to marry the person you love and if you’re doing that what else can go wrong?’