Ceremonies at York Register Office
Find out how we're keeping ceremonies safe at York Register Office.
You can get married or enter into a civil partnership in York if you're:
- aged 16 years, or older
- single, divorced or widowed
- not closely related
You need permission from your parents or guardians if you're under 18.
Civil partnerships are available for same-sex and opposite-sex couples; appointments for 'giving notice' and for ceremonies are subject to availability. Contact York Register Office to discuss bookings.
To get married or enter a civil partnership in England and Wales, each person must give legal notice of intention, to the registrar in the district (county) where you live.
Regardless of where you intend to hold your ceremony, you must both give 28 days' notice (in person) at your local register office, before your marriage or civil partnership can legally go ahead - you'll need to book an appointment to do this; notice cannot be given by post, telephone or email.
If you live in different registration districts you must 'give notice' in your own local office, and your notice period doesn't begin until both appointments are complete.
Legal notice of intention to marry or enter a civil partnership must be given at least 28 clear days, prior to the date of the marriage or civil partnership, and you will need to take specific documents with you to the appointment.
If you live in England or Wales but outside York you will need to contact your local registration office to make your appointment, as this must take place in the district where you live.
If you live outside England or Wales and you want to marry in York you must reside in England or Wales for 7 clear days before the date of the notice appointment. This does not include the date you arrive and the date of the notice. Both of you must be resident at the same time, for the 7 day period, before giving notice.
Please be aware that when you give your notice it is essential that the venue provided is correct so that the ceremony can go ahead. If you are having your ceremony at our office the venue is either:
York Register Office – which is a statutory ceremony with 2 witnesses only and will take place in a working office.
The Bootham Suite – which is for a larger ceremony (3 or more guests).
Your venue of choice will be confirmed on your booking form, if you are not sure please email email@example.com for clarification before you attend your notice appointment.
Your appointment to give notice
The earliest you can give notice is 12 months prior to your ceremony however we prioritise appointments by ceremony dates to ensure we can accommodate demand so you may be asked to contact us at a later date. Notices are valid for one year.
If you live in York contact York Register Office to make an appointment to 'give notice' of your marriage or civil partnership.
We're currently only taking notice for ceremonies which are taking place in the next 3 months from the date that you contact us.
You can book an appointment Monday to Friday between 8.30am and 5.00pm.
See the York Register Office marriage and civil partnership fees for appointment costs.
You'll be told which documents you must bring; notice can not be given if you do not bring the correct documents.
If your appointment to give notice cannot go ahead due to correct documents not being provided we may not be able to offer another appointment in time for your ceremony day, as you are required to give 28 clear days’ notice. As a result you may have to move your ceremony date.
- must be certified or sealed
- must be original; photocopies are not acceptable
- must be in English or accompanied by a translation (including any stamps) that is signed with the translator's name and address
If you're under 18 years old, contact the Register Office in advance to ensure you can provide the correct documents.
Getting married or entering into a civil partnership abroad
Separate legal procedures apply for religious ceremonies, marrying abroad, and for people subject to immigration control - see gov.uk/marriages-civil-partnerships for more information.
If you need a Certificate of No Impediment (CONI), and you live in York please contact us for advice at firstname.lastname@example.org or 01904 654477.
Getting married or having a civil partnership in a church or other religious building
If you a marrying or having a civil partnership in a church or other religious building, you should check with the church whether you need to give notice to the registrar.
Marriage and civil partnership fees
To secure a slot you are required to pay a non-refundable deposit of £50. The £50 deposit is deductible from your final balance. You will be required to pay final balance 6 weeks before your ceremony date.
Fees are subject to change and usually revised on 1 April each year. As soon as you have given notice you are eligible to pay the balance of your ceremony and the amount charged will be the current fee which is in place at the time of your payment.
If you decide to move your ceremony date the deposit can move to your new date. If you cancel your ceremony the £50 is non-refundable.
Find out more about York Register Office marriage and civil partnership fees for giving notice of marriage or civil partnership, and ceremony costs.
If we need to check documents from overseas, or need to contact the General Register Office to confirm whether your marriage or civil partnership can go ahead, there may be additional costs.
Wedding venues in York
The ceremony, your way
Once you have given notice you will be electronically sent a Ceremony Planner for you to make your choices in advance of your ceremony.
The ceremony planner allows you to choose your vows, readings and poems so the ceremony is bespoke to you. For legal reasons religious content is not permitted.
Your ceremony planner should be completed and returned to us no later than 4 weeks before your ceremony where possible.
If you have lost your ceremony planner and require a new one please email email@example.com
You must have 2 people attending your ceremony and both will be witnesses. You will be asked to include the full names of your chosen witnesses on your ceremony planner.
The role and purpose of your witnesses
When you get married or form a civil partnership, you must have two witnesses present. By law the couple and the 2 witnesses must remain in the room for the duration of the ceremony.
The witnesses' presence is required by law. The purpose is to be able to swear in court as to the identity of the parties or to testify to the circumstances in which the ceremony was performed, including the date and place.
The witnesses can be friends or family and will be included in your guest numbers. They should preferably be over the age of 18 and they must be able to speak and understand English.
They will be asked to sign the schedule and their names will be included on your marriage or civil partnership certificate.
If any person you have chosen as a witness leaves the room during the ceremony they will not be able to act as a witness or sign the schedule.
Being an official witness is a very significant duty.
The importance of a witness
It is a legal requirement that the paperwork be signed by two independent witnesses. You cannot have a wedding or civil partnership without witnesses in England or Wales.
Marriage and civil partnership certificates
Your marriage will be registered within 7 days of your ceremony taking place. You can order copy certificates online. The fee is £11 per certificate and your order will be posted within 15 days from the date you submit your order.