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Marriages and Civil Partnerships


Changes to the way marriages are registered from 4th May 2021

New marriage legislation means that the way a marriage is registered has changed from 4th May 2021.
What will this mean for you?

If you are having a civil marriage or marrying in a Religious Building other than a Church of England Church 
 
If you are marrying at a Church of England Church


Wedding Ceremonies and Civil Partnerships National Lockdown

Following the Prime Minister’s announcement of 4 January further national restrictions will come into force from 00:01 6 January in England. Stay at Home - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) guidance
 
The regulations which cover the national restrictions will provide for people to meet with others from outside their household for the purpose of marriages and civil partnerships but these must only take place with a maximum of 6 attendees and where these can be delivered safely in COVID-19 secure venues. This includes those where a Registrar General’s licence has been issued which can take place in private dwellings or other settings such as hospices and hospitals where safe to do so.
 
Whilst the legal position is that marriages and civil partnerships can continue to take place (subject to the limits on numbers) Government Guidance says that they should only take place in exceptional circumstances. The maximum number of 6 that are allowed to attend includes the couple, witnesses and guests, but those working, such as registration officials and venue managers are not included.
 
Tameside Register Office will deliver ceremonies in line with the Government’s recommendation that ceremonies should only take place in exceptional circumstances with a maximum of 4 at the Register office (owing to size of room) and 6 at an Approved Premise in a COVID-19 secure venue.

 
Examples of exceptional circumstances are as follows:

  • One of the applicants or close relative such as parent has been told that they have limited life expectancy; where one of the applicants is pregnant; moving abroad; going into army, undergoing debilitating treatment or life changing surgery.
 
We will consider all requests on their own merits and in the prevailing circumstances.
 
The Police have enforcement options for leaving home and gatherings and where there are no exceptions and if the number of attendees exceed the numbers allowed within the exception they may take such action as is necessary to enforce any restrictions imposed by the regulations.
 
If you break the rules - The police can take action against you if you meet in larger groups. This includes breaking up illegal gatherings, which includes more than the maximum number for a wedding and issuing fines (fixed penalty notices).
 
This also means you must not meet socially indoors with family or friends unless they are part of your household or support bubble. No exemptions are given to celebrate marriages or civil partnerships.
 
You can be given a Fixed Penalty Notice of £200 for the first offence, doubling for further offences up to a maximum of £6,400. If you hold, or are involved in holding, an illegal gathering of over 30 people, the police can issue fines of £10,000.
 
Keeping you and your friends and family safe - Please remember when meeting friends and family to attend a wedding - you should also follow guidance on social distancing and letting in fresh air


Update – Roadmap to remove National restrictions in England – Plans for marriages and civil partnerships

On 22 February the Prime Minister announced his plans for emerging from the current lockdown and presented a roadmap with a step-by-step plan to ease restrictions in England. The plans apply to all areas of England from the dates specified, but are subject to the four tests outlined in the roadmap being met at each step. 
 

Marriages and Civil Partnerships in England

Current national restrictions remain in place and there are no changes for marriages and civil partnerships in England prior to 29 March. The changes planned are:
  • Step 1 (2nd stage): From 29 March – Legal limit of 6 attendees but no longer limited to ‘exceptional circumstances’ (maximum of 4 at the Register office (owing to size of room) and 6 at an Approved Premise in a COVID-19 secure venue.)
 
  • Step 2: No earlier than 12 April - Legal limit of 15 attendees (maximum of 4 at the Register office (owing to size of room) and 15 at an Approved Premise in a COVID-19 secure venue if permitted to open – check with the venue)
 
  • Step 3: No earlier than 17 May – Legal limit of 30 attendees (maximum of 4 at the Register office (owing to size of room) and 30 at an Approved Premise in a COVID-19 secure venue.)
 
  • Step 4: No earlier than 21 JuneNo legal limit on attendees (maximum of 4 at the Register office) (subject to the outcome of the scientific Events Research Programme – from April the government will run pilots for events such as large weddings to help determine how measures such as enhanced testing might allow large groups to attend without social distancing.)
 
The number allowed to attend includes the couple, witnesses and guests, but those working, such as registration officials and venue managers are not included.
If you have any queries or concerns please contact us to help make your day special and safe for you and others.

Please see the attached link for Government guidance for small marriages and civil partnerships
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-for-small-marriages-and-civil-partnerships
 
 
 

The marriage and civil partnership room for Tameside Register Office is located at the Town Hall, King Street, Dukinfield. Opening hours are Monday to Friday, 9.30am to 4.30pm..


Statutory Notice of Marriage/Notice of Civil Partnership

You are required by law to give notice of marriage at 28 days before the ceremony can take place at the Register office in the district in which you reside. Please note a marriage notice is only valid for 12 months
When you attend to make the formal arrangments, you will need to produce certain documents to confirm your name, age, marital status and nationality.
 
Mandatory documents:
 -    A current valid passport.  If you do not have a valid passport you must bring a full birth certificate (if   
     you were born after 1 January 1983 a copy of you mothers full birth certificate or passport is also
     required)  If you do not have a passport and are bringing a borth certificate you will also need to
     provide a form of photo ID, eg driving licence.
 
 -    You must supply a document to show you address in Tameside.  One of the following is acceptable:    
     Utility bill, dated within 2 months, bank statement dated within 1 month, or the most recent Council
     tax bill.
 
  -   If you have been widowed the death certificate of your spouse

  •     If you are divorced, a decree absolute bearing the courts original stamp (if you were divorced  outside the UK, please contact the Register office for advice)
 
 -    Any documents relating to change of name
  •   You will be charged £35.00 each to give notice


Click the thumbnails below to see the bigger pictures of Dukinfield Town Hall, and the Register Office.

Dukinfield Town Hall Dukinfield Town Hall Interior Dukinfield Town Hall Register Office Dukinfield Town Hall Register Office Dukinfield Town Hall Register Office


Emergency “out of hours”

An emergency “out of hours” service is available for the following only-

  • A Registrars General Licence provides for a marriage to take place in circumstances where one of the parties is seriously ill and not expected to recover and cannot be moved to a place where the marriage could normally be solemnized. Marriage by Registrar General’s licence cannot take place in a register office, approved premises or a registered building. There are no other circumstances where a Registrars General Licence can be issued.
 

This service can be requested via the Council’s 24 hour emergency call centre on 0161 342 2222.

 

Contact Information
Contact by Post

Tameside Register Office
Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council
Tameside One
PO BOX 317
Ashton-Under-Lyne
OL6 0GS
Contact by Telephone
0161 342 5032

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