The Beddington Society - 70 years of weddings at St Bartholomew the Great

There has been a long tradition of weddings at St Bartholomew the Great. This beautiful church with its grandeur, striking ancient beauty and fine music has shared in the happiness of many couples from a wide variety of backgrounds who have chosen to marry here including doctors and nurses from St Bart's Hospital, city workers, those associated to the City Livery companies as well as those living in the parish. Many still feel a close bond with the church years after their wedding day and often return to St Bartholomew the Great to celebrate other significant moments of their lives such as the christening of their children.

In 2003, the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire, married in the church in 1941, posted an announcement in the Times inviting anyone married at St Bartholomew the Great after 1939 to get in contact with them. The response was overwhelming, and confirmed just how special St Bartholomew the Great is for so many people. Wedding days were recalled with the fondest of memories and many spoke of the affection they feel for the church, describing it as an unforgettable setting for an unforgettable experience, a magic church for a wedding with unforgettable music and high quality of the service delivered sensitively and with humanity.

In 2003 a booklet, Sixty-five years of weddings at St Bartholomew the Great was published, and in October of that year a service was held, to which all the couples were invited, followed by a reception in the Great Hall of St Bartholomew's Hospital. It was a wonderful occasion and over 300 people came along to celebrate.

This service marked the birth of the Beddington Society, which was named after Mr and Mrs C.R. Beddington, who were married at St Bartholomew the Great in March 1939. Mrs Beddington senior writes:
The beauty of St Bartholomew and of the service and the whole occasion is now in our old age wrapped in agolden haze – and our son's in July [2002] in the same church was a special joy and revived for us the happiest of memories.

The Beddington Society continues to grow. If you have been married at St Bartholomew the Great then we welcome you to join!