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Last Updated: Wednesday, 25 April 2007, 15:28 GMT 16:28 UK
Town aims to revive romantic role
Wedding
Weddings can have major financial benefits for local business
A bid is being made to revive the romantic reputation of a Borders town.

The original Coldstream marriage house was a popular venue for "runaway" couples from England for much of the 18th and 19th Century.

Scottish Borders Council has now refurbished the Old Town Hall to turn it into a venue for tying the knot.

The authority believes the move could have significant economic impact on the town and hopes to have the site ready for use by June this year.

Scotland became a popular destination for young couples after the Marriage Act was passed in 1754 in England.

Many local companies and small businesses such as caterers, accommodation-providers, photographers and florists have a crucial role to play in making weddings successful
Marion Oates
Economic development manager

It outlawed marriages without parental consent if either party was under 21 - instantly turning towns across the border into busy marriage venues.

Now SBC hopes to revive that time when Coldstream was considered the "Gretna of the east".

About 5,000 couples a year get married in the Dumfries and Galloway town.

The council believes that Coldstream should be able to generate a slice of that interest too.

Business impact

Economic development manager Marion Oates said the impact for businesses could be great.

"Many local companies and small businesses such as caterers, accommodation-providers, photographers and florists have a crucial role to play in making weddings successful," she said.

"We will be working with them to ensure they know how to benefit from the business opportunities weddings can provide and how they can work in partnership with the registrar and their team."

A free workshop is to be held on 16 May to show businesses how they might benefit from the development.


SEE ALSO
Kerry Katona in Scottish wedding
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14 Feb 07 |  South of Scotland
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05 Apr 06 |  Scotland
Valentine's Day influx at Gretna
14 Feb 06 |  Scotland

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