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The Best Man's Role

General duties

Traditionally the best man would liaise closely with the chief Bridesmaid to ensure that the wedding runs smoothly. Whilst the best man has no specific status in the arrangements for the engagement party, the stag night (traditionally the groom would organise this but it is becoming increasingly popular for the best man to take on this duty, so he can organise some surprises!), the actual wedding day itself or the reception, he may be called upon to help with deliveries/pickups and other general organisation matters.

Probably the most worrying part of the day for the best man is the speeches, and its understandable, here you are on your best friends/brothers wedding day in front of a big crowd of people (most of whom you'll know), most likely with a video camera pointing at you and you want to impress them, as it is their big day. Phew, nervous yet? Well don't be because the good thing about it all is that the audience will be rooting for you, they really want to laugh, and even if you don't think your material is that funny, you can be assured that they will still laugh at the weakest of jokes.

6 months before the wedding day
Discuss the wedding plans with the bride, groom and chief bridesmaid.
Help to choose the ushers and explain their duties to them.

4 months before the wedding day
Organise the stag party.
Prepare your speech for the reception.
Compile a list of close family members who should have special seating arrangements at the ceremony and pass to the ushers.
Visit the ceremony and the reception venues with the bride and groom to check on timings, parking arrangements etc.

1 week before the wedding day
Check the groom has all the necessary documents for the ceremony and the honeymoon. Double check his passports and visas.
Attend the wedding rehearsal.
Liaise with the ushers on the final arrangements.
Check for roadworks, diversions, carnivals etc taking place on the wedding day that may effect timings or the route.
Arrange transport for the groom and self to ceremony.
Arrange transport to and from the reception.
Arrange going away car for the bride and groom from the reception if required.
Make a note of details and availability of emergency taxi companies.
Finalise speech.
Have your hair cut.

On the day before the wedding
Collect any hired clothing and accessories.
Wash car if driving to the ceremony.
Organise decorations for the going away car.

On the wedding day
Check final arrangements for the ushers, buttonholes, order of service sheets and rings.
Collect and telemessages, cards and emails to be read at the reception.
Keep the rings safe until the required time in the service.
Help the groom get ready (so be ready before him).
Ensure the groom gets to the church on time, which we advise is at least 20 minutes before the ceremony is due to start.

At the church
Check on the ushers.
Sit in the right hand front pew with the groom.
Witness the signing of the register, if required.
Ensure all fees are paid to the church or registrar.
Escort the chief bridesmaid out of the church.
Assist the photographer in organising the guests for the photographs.
Ensure everyone has transportation to the reception venue.

At the reception
Stand in the receiving line and greet the guests.
Announce the speeches and cake cutting, if there is no Master of Ceremonies or Toastmaster.
Read any cards, emails and telemessages.
Give the third and final speech and reply on behalf of the bridesmaids.
Dance with the chief bridesmaid once the bride and groom have completed their first dance.
Decorate the going away car.
Put any luggage required in the going away car.
Make sure the bride and groom go and change on time and announce to the guests that they are about to depart.
Take charge of the groom's wedding clothes, if required.

After the wedding
Ensure the wedding presents are safely stored.
Return any hired clothing and accessories.