Since becoming legally binding in 2005, Humanist Weddings are becoming ever more popular in Scotland. This type of wedding is ideal those who aren’t religious and looking for a wedding that is more flexible and personal than a civil or registry office ceremony.

The Old Manor Hotel will help you plan your day and start your married life with a ceremony that really means something to you as a couple.  A Humanist Marriage is a very personal and intimate occasion, and the celebrant will work with you beforehand to help you create the perfect ceremony – with the focus on you as a couple, and your hopes and dreams for the future.

Although non-religious, a humanist wedding can contain many old Scottish traditions such as handfasting, drinking from the Quaich, wedding band warming, unity candles before and after the vows, oathing stones, an ancient Celtic tribal tradition and the sand ceremony, mixing two types of sand as a symbol of joining.

A Humanist Wedding can be carried out anywhere your humanist celebrant deems safe and dignified! We have hosted many humanist ceremonies at The Old Manor Hotel – both indoors and outdoors – talk to us about your ideas, and we’ll do our best to help.

Contact the Humanist Society Scotland to find celebrants in the local area to choose from.


An Oathing Stone is an old Scottish tradition where you place your hands upon a stone while saying your wedding vows.  It was thought to be the best way to express your solemn promise in physical form. This ancient ceremony is rooted deeply in the Celtic tribal traditions.  Having a connection to your ancestors and the land was a critical ingredient to any important new venture – particularly, marriage. The oathing stone helps root your future into the wisdom of the past at the start of your new life.


A wedding band warming is a lovely way to involve all of your guests at the ceremony. This is where the wedding rings get passed round all the guests (usually tied on a ribbon or on a ring cushion) as the ceremony is taking place so that everyone gets to ‘warm the rings’ and add their own thoughts, wishes and hopes for your marriage. They are passed round until they make their way back to the front in time for the vows.


Handfasting, hand tying or ‘tying the knot’ is an ancient Celtic marriage ritual. The celebrant ties ribbons around your joined hands as a way of confirming your union. It’s a symbolic way of showing that you are joined to one another. Originally, the idea was that they be betrothed for a year and a day a hand fast during a legal wedding will be for life. Handfasting can involve your family members – this is often done with young children, and is a lovely way of involving them in your ceremony.


Drinking from a Quaich is an ancient Scottish ceremony, symbolic of trust, love and peace between two people. This act of sharing is a symbolic of the life you will share together, and the cup represents the cup of life. In drinking from the same cup, you are symbolising your commitment to share all that the future may bring. This is traditionally done with whisky but you are welcome to choose a drink of your choice and create your own special drink (alcoholic or not).

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