Interview with a Celebrant: Michelle Clayford

Michelle Clayford Independent Celebrant

This month, I am excited to introduce you to another of our Graduates, Michelle Clayford, Celebrant based in Leeds. Michelle completed our Funeral Celebrant Training and our Wedding and Vow Renewal Celebrant Training. She’s based in Leeds and conducts ceremonies in and around West Yorkshire. Working with Michelle for 12 weeks was allowed me to get to know about her values and to see the authentic way she upholds and practices them. I think I leared as much as she did during our work together.

Michelle asked if she could record her interview, and I was delighted to agree. You’ll find Michelle’s contact details under the video, so do connect with her.

Interview with Michelle Clayford Celebrant

You can connect with Michelle through the following links:

AOIC Profile




A note from Dinah, Michelle’s Tutor.

While I understand Michelle’s frustration at discovering how competitive it can be working for yourself in a growing market, I don’t believe that the Celebrant market is saturated. When we first join a profession, it can be a bit like buying that red car; suddenly evenyone around you has a red car! When you become an Independent Celebrant, and join the Trade Association (AOIC) you are surrounded by other Celebrants. You’re planning a website so you take a look at what other Celebrants are doing, and you feel overwhelmed.

The market for Celebrants, particularly Independent ones, is growing. This is excellent news for the profession as it raises awareness of the choices people have. Many people still are not aware that they can have a multi-faith ceremony or one that reflects their favourite hobby. They don’t know about the choices they have for their end of life and how a life celebration can support their loved-ones.

Many of our Graduates tell me that, after the inital four to six months of building their presence and establishing a reputation in their community, the work starts to find them. It takes time and can feel overwhelming, but persistance and consistency are the key.

Michelle was an exceptional student and I have no doubt she will be a fabulous, supportive, authentic and brillaint Celebrant. I hope sharing this interview helps her get found by the people who are looking for her.

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