Wedding anniversary traditions ‘in decline’

Traditional wedding anniversaries are in decline as husbands and wives celebrate in more personalised ways, new research suggests. Picture: Contributed
Traditional wedding anniversaries are in decline as husbands and wives celebrate in more personalised ways, new research suggests. Picture: Contributed
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MORE than half of Britons are unaware of traditional wedding anniversary milestones such as silver, pearl and ruby anniversaries, according to new research.

More personalised celebrations such as dining out or going on holiday are overtaking the traditional exchange of gifts tied to gemstones.

Almost half of respondents said that swapping such tokens neglected male tastes, and one in ten said they were old fashioned. Only ten per cent of respondents said they gave and received presents according to tradition.

Despite these traditions declining in popularity, romantic Brits are not neglecting key milestones in their relationships - only 4 per cent regularly forget their anniversary, while just 6 per cent have to remind their partners their anniversary is coming up.

Aoife Davey, marketing manager at One4all, the Post Office gift card, said: “While I can believe that many British people are choosing to commemorate their anniversaries with gifts and celebrations which are more in keeping with 21st century tastes, it is really quite surprising that the old anniversary traditions have fallen so significantly off our radar as a nation.

“From this data, it’s clear that many couples are opting to go for more personalised gifts and methods of celebrating, which is nice to see. Diamonds, pearls and rubies are beautiful and decadent, but they won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, and even stunning gems like this can seem impersonal if they’re not what someone is into.

“As gifting experts, in order to achieve the best reaction possible from loved ones, we’d encourage people to consider how their choice of gift - whatever it might be, traditional or not - fits into their husband or wife’s tastes, and try and match it to them as closely as possible.”

Despite the decline of traditional wedding anniversaries, Britain continues to be a romantic nation. 68 per cent of adults believe they will be with their partners forever, with women proving to be slightly more romantic than men, with 5% more feeling this way.

Twenty-five to 34-year-olds are the most likely to forget wedding anniversaries, with just over 1 in 10 claiming to do so regularly.

While the over 55s are often amongst the closest to some of the most major landmark anniversaries, they are also the most likely to shun traditional anniversary gifts in favour of exchanging gifts which are more personal.