British brides are remarkably traditional when it comes to wedding ceremonies - but they don't think the bride's family should pay, and they won't promise to 'obey'
In many ways, British society has evolved dramatically over the past 50 years. But new research from YouGov reveals that when it comes to wedding traditions, both men and women in Britain want to keep things as they are.
Even traditions with medieval connotations (the father giving the bride away signified the woman ceasing to be the property of the father and becoming the property of the husband) are overhwelmingly popular.
Slightly less popular, but still supported by the majority, is the tradition of the bride taking the husband's surname, which critics argue is a sign of a woman joining a man’s family line: 66% of men and 58% of women support this tradition.
The most popular tradition is the groom having a best man: 88% of British adults see this as “a good tradition that should be preserved” and it is the highest ranked for both men and women.
The highly traditional practice of the bride’s family paying for the wedding is the most opposed ritual, as 75% think it “should be dropped.” Women are significantly more likely than men to be against, however, by 82%-68%. Also largely opposed is the Roman Catholic wedding vow of promising to obey the husband, though women oppose this far more than men, by 81%-59%.
In a sign of the times and in keeping with the poll, Kate Middleton famously did not vow to ‘obey’ Prince William at their wedding; nor did Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1981.