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This came about because at one time (from 1753 on) the law in England required that couples under 21 years old had to have their parents' permission to marry, while north of the border, in Scotland, no parents' permission was required (and where boys could marry at 14 and girls at 12). On leaving England Gretna Green was the first village couples would arrive at.
So began a tradition of marriage in this tiny village which continues to the present day.
This panorama shows the Old Blacksmith's Shop, reputedly the original, principal place for marriages.