Update for Marriage & Civil Partnership Ceremonies

Update for Period of National Restrictions

In order to support the UK Government’s Stay at Home message – only essential appointments will be undertaken

Marriage & Civil Partnership Ceremonies

Following the announcement by the Prime Minister, from 5th January 2021 marriage and civil partnership ceremonies should only take place in exceptional circumstances (for example, urgent marriages where one of those getting married is seriously ill and not expected to recover, or due to undergo debilitating treatment or life-changing surgery).  In such circumstances, ceremonies must only take place with up to 6 people, dependent on Covid-safe room capacity.  

NO receptions are allowed.

We are contacting couples with ceremonies booked during these restrictions to assist them in postponing, amending or cancelling their ceremony. 


Notice of Marriage / Civil Partnership

During the period of the National Lockdown we will only be taking essential Notice of Marriage / Civil Partnership appointments.

Those couples who live outside of Gloucestershire should contact their local Register Office to find out what arrangements they have put in place for notices which need to be given.


High Volume of Calls

On Mondays and at certain times of the day (particularly 12-2.30pm) we may experience a higher volume of calls to book birth and death appointments and ceremonies. Please bear with us and we will do our best to answer your call as soon as possible. Alternatively you can book online for birth or death appointments


Become an approved venue

Any suitable building can apply to be an approved venue to host non-religious ceremonies.

If you would like to apply for your venue to become an approved premises for weddings and other ceremonies or wish to renew your existing licence, you can fill in an application form. Please make sure you read the General Register Office approved premises regulations before you apply to make sure that your venue is suitable for a licence.

Please note, the grant of a civil ceremony licence to a venue is not an endorsement of their services but confirmation that the venue is suitable for the conduct of marriage ceremonies and civil partnerships in line with the requirements of the Marriage Act 1949 and the Civil Partnership Act 2004. 


How do I apply for or renew a licence?

Applications must be made on the County Council's official application form.

The approved premises application pack (current version published June 2020) consists of the application form and guidance notes relating to the application.

Please submit your application electronically by emailing the completed form and ALL supporting documentation to gloucestershireapproved@gloucestershire.gov.uk 

Applications must be accompanied by:

  1. a copy of a valid Fire Risk Assessment (carried out within the last 3 years). This document must include room capacities for each room included in the licence application. For information on completing a fire risk assessment you can visit the Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue website. Note - undertaking a fire risk assessment is a legal requirement and failure to conduct one may lead to enforcement action.
  2. a copy of any relevant Planning Permission which applies to the venue.
  3. a copy of a valid Public Liability Insurance certificate.
  4. a copy of a valid Premises Licence (formerly known as Public Entertainment licence).
  5. a copy of a Plan (or plans) of the premises clearly identifying their location and the room(s) to be licensed. Please include room measurements in metres on the plans and room capacities (for safe occupancy) together with an explanation of how these figures were calculated.

How long does a licence last?

A licence will normally run for 3 years from the date of issue and will terminate at the end of that period unless renewed or revoked.

How much does it cost?

  • the current fee to license or renew a licence for an approved premises is £2,500.
  • the fee covers the cost to the County Council of processing your application, including publication of an official notice on the Gloucestershire County Council website, inspections during the 3-year approval period, inclusion on the General Register Office official list and Gloucestershire Registration Service's Celebrate With Us website.
  • if you require any changes to be made during the term of the licence you will be required to pay a further charge equivalent to the licence fee. You are therefore advised to withhold changes until the expiry of the current licence.
  • once an application fee has been accepted and costs have been incurred, no refund will be made.

Related information

Below are a series of related documents for you to download.

Should you require further information before you make your application, please email gloucestershireapproved@gloucestershire.gov.uk

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