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Wedding services company says Covid-19 makes 2020 ‘a write-off for us’

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A Downham wedding services business has seen all but one of its bookings this year cancelled.

M&J Wedding Services had 47 jobs booked in for 2020, with 44 being postponed to either next year or 2022 due to the Covid-19 crisis.

The business, run by father and son team James and Martyn Scott (pictured), has only been operating for a couple of years and provides cars, photographers, a florist, wedding and bridesmaids dresses, a DJ and is hoping to soon add a make-up artist.

Martyn (left) and James Scott, of Downham firm M&J Wedding Services (41802469)
Martyn (left) and James Scott, of Downham firm M&J Wedding Services (41802469)

But the fledgling business, which is run alongside the father and son’s full-time jobs, has suffered badly as ceremonies have been put back.

James said: “This year has just about been a complete write-off. Nearly everybody we have had booked in has postponed.

“Next year’s diary is looking good but this year has been almost completely wiped out.

“The last job we did was on February 15.”

Just one booking, in Bury St Edmunds on September 19, has survived.

“It’s been absolutely horrendous,” said James. “This is our second year doing it but luckily we have had our full-time jobs too or we’d have been really stuck.

“We’re aiming to build the business up for it to support us both full-time.”

He added: “The aim we are looking for is a one-stop shop for all that is needed for your wedding.

“Once the make-up artist has been found then we are looking into the venue side of things so that we can incorporate the whole thing for the bride and groom.”

The Scotts were due to provide services for Robert Pearson and Sarah-Jane Buttriss (see main story) and has twice postponed the bookings.

Sarah-Jane said: “James has been very supportive. He’s a great guy and been very understanding.”

With the wedding season almost over, a study conducted by Hello-safe.co.uk reveals that the UK wedding industry has lost around £4.8billion in 2020 due to the pandemic.

Overall, there has been seen a 32 per cent decrease in weddings celebrations.

It could lead to 2021 being a bumper one for the industry.

With 80 per cent of weddings postponed - four out of five of which were deferred to the coming year - the wedding industry will have to cater for about 160,000 more weddings than usual.

With about 250,000 weddings each year, the UK could see up to 410,000 weddings happen in 2021 only.

With the average wedding costing £30,000, it’s estimated that the UK market could go from £7.5billion to £12.3billion next year, although that would not compensate the £4.3billion loss already incurred by venues and suppliers.

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