Civil partnership

Congratulations!

Organising an occasion as big as this is exciting. Every wedding is unique and special. Wakefield Registration and Celebratory Services hope that this information will give you all you need to start planning your special day, whether it is to take place in one of our Ceremony Rooms or at an Approved Venue.

The Civil Partnerships (Opposite-sex Couples) Regulations 2019, which extend eligibility for forming civil partnerships to opposite sex couples, were approved in Parliament and made on 5 November 2019.  The regulations will come into force on 2 December 2019.

We are now able to take bookings for couples to give notice from 2 December 2019 which will allow the first civil partnerships under the standard procedure to be formed from 31 December 2019. 

Choosing a venue

Choosing a venue for your wedding will be one of the most important decisions you will have to make. In the Wakefield district your wedding can only take place at one of ‘Our Venues’ or at an approved venue.

Outdoor Structures

If your chosen venue has an approved outdoor structure and you would like your wedding ceremony to take place in there, the venue should provide you with a copy of an outdoor structure agreement form which must be completed and returned to us at least 8 weeks prior to your ceremony. If you require a copy please contact us immediately. 

Please note that you should make additional plans with the venue to hold your ceremony in one of their approved ceremony rooms in case the weather is inclement on the day. The indoor ceremony room should be able to accommodate all of your invited guests.

Inclement weather is defined as rain (or the high likelihood of showers), wind, cold conditions (under 16 degrees), extremely hot and sunny and any other extreme conditions. Your guests need to be comfortable and be able to hear the ceremony, especially if you are under cover and they are not!

When you decide which venue you wish to have your civil partnership at you should contact us to provisionally book a Registrar. You will need to pay a non-refundable booking fee. 

If you wish to change the date, time or location of your ceremony you must request this in writing and pay a ceremony amendment fee.

If you wish to change the location of your ceremony, after your notice has been given please contact us to discuss on 0345 4 852 888.

What next? - Giving notice of your civil partnership

In order to form a Civil Partnership in England or Wales one of the parties to the Civil Partnership must have resided in England or Wales. Before you can form a civil partnership in England and Wales you must each give notice of your intended civil partnership to the Superintendent Registrar in the District where you live. If you are unsure which register office to attend to give your notice, it is the office in the local authority area to which you pay your Council Tax.

There are certain documents you will need to provide to give notice, these are outlined in our 'information for giving notice of civil partnership'.

Notice cannot be given until you have decided on a venue and no more than 12 months in advance. We appreciate that you may wish to secure a booking with a venue more than 12 months in advance. In these circumstances we strongly recommend that you contact us to provisionally book a registrar.

The minimum period between giving notice and when a ceremony can take place is 28 clear days. Please note that if you are a non-EEA national different regulations may apply. Further information can be found on the gov.uk website.

If you were previously in a marriage or civil partnership which was dissolved in a foreign country an additional statutory fee is payable at the time of your notice appointment. 

You can make an appointment to give notice by contacting us.

Your wedding ceremony

Your provisional booking is confirmed when you have given notice. The Registrar will provide you a guide outlining the choices you need to make in advance of the ceremony.

If you live outside of Wakefield we will send a marriage guide to you in the post when we receive confirmation that you have given notice of marriage at your local Register Office.

We provide you with many opportunities to enhance and personalise your ceremony so that it is unique to you. You can include personal vows, readings and music. You can share your story, how you met, your shared hopes and aspirations.

You can also choose to combine sands, which symbolizes the two of you and your families joining together as one. If there is anything additional to this that you would like to include in your ceremony please contact us to discuss.

If at this point you would like to meet a dedicated member of our ceremonies team to discuss all aspects of your marriage ceremony you can book a bespoke ceremony meeting.

Your ceremony will be delivered by a qualified, experienced and dedicated Registrar

Forming a Civil Partnership in a Religious Building

In 2011 the law was amended so that Civil Partnerships could be formed in religious buildings. A religious building can make an application to be approved as a venue for the formation of Civil Partnerships, however, to date no premises within the Wakefield District have applied for an approval.

Foreign nationals

If either of you is from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland and subject to immigration control, you or your partner will need a visa to come to the UK to:

  • give notice
  • get married or form a civil partnership

More information

Forming a Civil Partnership Abroad

It is important that you consult with the local authorities in the country where you want to form a civil partnership to find out what you need to do.

Some countries may require you to give notice of your civil partnership to the Superintendent Registrar of the District in which you live please contact us for further information.

Urgent Civil Partnership (Death Bed Wedding)

The Registrar General can authorise civil partnerships to take place at short notice in circumstances where one of the parties is seriously ill, not expected to recover and cannot be moved to a place where a civil partnership could normally take place. This is known as a civil partnership by Registrar Generals Licence.

A twenty-four hour service is available every day of the year to provide for arrangements to be made for a civil partnership by Registrar General's Licence. The service can be accessed by contacting us or if outside of normal opening hours by telephoning Wakefield Council Contact Centre on 0345 8 506 506.

Conversion of Civil Partnership to Same Sex Marriage

We are aware that some couples who have already formed a civil partnership may have chosen a marriage had that option been available at the time.  Couples in civil partnerships are able to convert into a marriage. For more information contact us.

Contact us

Wakefield Registration and Celebratory Services
0345 4 852 888