Your Groom Speech

Writing your groom speech needs a bit more thought than your straight counterpart. Namely, how do you avoid tedious repetition of the same classic anecdotes and necessary thank yous if your husband’s also giving a speech?

Of course, if you’re the only one delivering a speech then that has its own pressures! Entertaining a crowd, ticking off the ‘to dos’ and dropping a lovebomb on your partner – all without resorting to cliches, googled gags or old fashioned speech etiquette.

As BBC trained TV scriptwriters, the Speechy team specialise in creating amazing moments. Here’s our guide to nailing your speech…

*Of course, if you’re looking for a bit more than ‘advice’, check out our groom speech template (specially designed for blokes marrying blokes), speech edit service or our bespoke speech writing service. We’re rated ‘Excellent’ on Trustpilot for a reason.


Who’s doing what?

The first thing to think about is how you and your groom are going to divide speech duty. It might just be one of you addressing your guests (though it seems like a missed opportunity) or you could both give a speech. The other option is a joint speech (we LOVE em!), and you can find out more about joint speeches here.

Let’s assume you’re both delivering speeches; it makes sense to ensure you’re not doubling up. Sure, you’ll each want to thank both sets of parents but only one of you gets to tell the story where you both accidentally got locked in that bar.

Think about how to schedule the speeches. If you have more than three, consider having one after each course of the wedding dinner or even saving one till the evening do (though that’s a risky strategy if there’s a free bar).

Gay Wedding Speech Etiquette

Don’t get tied down with traditional etiquette. A lot of it is outdated.

Tailor your style to fit with the scene you’ve set. Have you invited a lot of older relatives who expect a certain level of decorum or just a dozen of your Pacha amigos who want Jagger Bombs on tap? Maybe you’ve splashed out on a stately manor or gone urban in the Gherkin (see Attitude’s alternative wedding guide if you’re interested in that one) – just make sure your words reflect the wedding you’ve created.

The thank yous are, of course, important and can ensure a lifetime of love from the in-laws (or years of deep & brooding resentment). The groom traditionally thanks…

  • everyone for coming
  • his parents
  • the in-laws
  • his best man or woman & ushers/bridesmaids

Of course, there may be others you want to mention (children you share or step-children?) but resist the urge to read out half the guest list. Nothing kills off a speech quicker than a tedious thank you list.

The groom traditionally ends his speech with a toast to the bridesmaids, but we think this is a missed opportunity (and you might not have any anyway). Toast something meaningful to you and your groom; something that will get everyone smiling. It could simply be a toast to ‘ a lifetime of dancing on tables’.

You can check out what other speakers at your wedding are expected to do in Confetti’s Full Etiquette Guide. Only necessary for the swotty sort!

5 Speech Rules

Rule 1: Be Different

A heart-warming tribute to your fella should be the focus of your speech but remember every groom is handsome, kind and generally amaaazing.

Cut the cliches and concentrate on what makes your man unique.

Avoid words like ‘soulmate’ or ‘beautiful’, anything that’s overused. Nail his individual and quirky characteristics.

Is he a library-lover, a technology fiend, a total foodie? Is he ‘Canal Street’s answer to Jay-Z’ or ‘the only man to still smell lovely after four days at Glastonbury’?

Rule 2: Be Funny

Yes, the expectation may be on the best man, but all wedding speeches should make people laugh.

Of course, being funny isn’t about finding good jokes on the internet (if only it were that easy) but instead making witty observations about your relationship.

So, conduct a courtship-autopsy; what have you done together, what do you argue about, what frustrates you about each other, what seems to be a regular theme in your relationship? See what you can have fun with.

Check out our tongue in cheek Boris Johnson groom speech spoof to get a sense of our humour. Remember the adage ‘it’s funny because it’s true’. More advice on our How To Be Funny Blog.

Rule 3: Tell a Story

Right, this is the important bit. Your speech should tell a story.

Yes, it’s made up of lots of different elements, but it needs to hook people in from the beginning, establish a theme and carry that through to an almighty climax.

One basic example was a groom who considered himself lucky; he talked about the quirks of fate that got him to the altar and ended his speech by toasting a ‘lifetime of luck and love’ before encouraging his guests to look under their napkins where he’d left them all a scratch card.

Find out #whatsyourstory 

Rule 4: Less is More

You’re aiming for about eight to ten minutes (ten allowing for laughter and ad-libs).

Remember no one ever listened to a wedding speech and said ‘if only it were longer’.

Even if you think you have a wealth of material, be strict with yourself and practise how long it takes you to deliver your speech.

Even Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address was only 272 words, so there’s no excuse for an overly long speech.

Once you write your first draft, edit it down to half the length. It will make it better.

Rule 5: Don't Say You're Gay

It’s blooming obvious, we all know it’s a gay wedding – there’s no poor woman dressed as a meringue!

Don’t feel you need to make jokes about two grooms, that would be catering to an old-school audience and the joke’s too obvious anyway.

Everyone just wants to know why you two love each other so keep your speech simple, sincere and sweet – rather than turning it into a same-sex sermon.

Weddingwire wrote a good article about the meaningful ways you can acknowledge your wedding is a same-sex one, like ensuring your venue is genuinely LGTBQ-friendly.

Speech Do's

Start writing your speech – Obvious but honestly, ideas will keep popping into your head once you kick off.

Make the thanks yous meaningful – Don’t just talk about what people have contributed to the wedding, thank them for what they’ve contributed to your life

Keep the thank yous concise – no one deserves more attention than your husband. 50 words max to anyone else!

Practise your speech and film it on your phone – Watch it back, promise yourself you’ll do something about your gut and spot where your speech can be improved.

Use witty wedding quotes – Plagiarism ain’t cool but using quotes is a great way to super-charge your speech with romance or humour. Get inspired by our Quote Guide.

Speech Don'ts

Don’t thank the caterers or the venue – It’s unnecessary.

Don’t resort to cliches – Yes you can thank your in-laws for ‘raising such a wonderful son’ but try to make it personal too. Thank your mother in law for the extra inch added to your waistline since you first sampled her Yorkshire puddings.

Don’t ignore the feedback of friends – It’s always worth testing your speech out on a mate but this also means you have to listen to them. If someone doesn’t get a joke, don’t waste your time explaining it as you won’t be able to do that on the day.

Don’t talk over laughter – You’ve worked hard for those laughs – don’t rush them. Always wait until your guests have settled down before continuing with your speech.

Don’t get overly soppy – Get the balance right between sweet and just showing off. Leave the pet names at home and keep anything too gushing for the bedroom.

Happy Customers

Incredible. Whether you think you can’t write a speech or you think you can write a speech...theses guys will do it better and take away some stress and worry too! Taking the time to learn the nuances of your relationship and pulling out the elements of your story that you never knew would make the whole room laugh (or cry).
Navigating through the wedding industry often feels like you’re stuck on a conveyer belt....Speechy is the complete opposite. They treat you and your wedding like you’re the one and only. I couldn’t recommend them more. Heidi and her writers are just great.
Heidi and the whole team at Speechy are an absolute gem! In addition to their talent and extensive experience in speech writing, Heidi had an impressive way of listening to me talk about mine and my partners personal anecdotes, before putting it in such a funny and beautiful way that it felt as though she’d known us for years.
This is the second time I’ve worked with Speechy & once again they’ve done an incredible job. Heidi was very nice to deal with and accommodating when I asked if Ed and Tom could help with my speech (as they did my first best man speech). They were excellent to work with right from the initial phone chat and the final speech had everyone crying with laughter!
Speechy saved the wedding day! Thanks a ton! You tailored the wedding speech perfectly! The right portion of laughter and happy tears. I am soooooo happy you wrote it and not me. It saved me so much time and you did a much better job than I ever could. Got a lot of compliments on the day & I'd highly recommend you to anyone.
Speechy helped me with my wedding speech & the experience from end-to-end was incredible. Heidi was so warm and encouraging. We spoke about what I was trying to achieve & she selected Claire, a writer on the team who was fantastic. She understood exactly what I was trying to communicate & shaped a speech that I was thrilled to deliver.
If you were like me and on the fence about getting a speech writer for your big day, don't be - and don't look further than Speechy. Heidi and her team are first rate and will write a speech so good, you'll ask yourself why you had any doubts. I couldn't recommend this outfit any more.
Speechy improved my groom's draft speech tremendously. With limited info & only a short amount of time, Speechy delivered an outstanding, finalized speech for me; the improvement was much better than I was hoping for. The humour, structure & fluency was improved greatly & the content still had a strong sentimental core.
Outstanding! 5 stars. Huge thank you to Heidi and James for being absolute superstars and helping me create an incredible groom speech for the wedding! You guys were fantastic to work with and smashed every detail, nothing short of outstanding! The content, length and tone were just perfect. I would highly recommend Speechy to anyone.

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