Notices of marriage or civil partnership

Notice appointments are currently available to book for couples marrying within the next 4 months, who are residents of the local area.

Please note: The rules surrounding notices are changing as of 1 July 2021, and all couples must give notice in the district in which at least one of them lives. Please see the Gov.uk website for more details.

Giving notice of marriage or civil partnerships

You must give at least 29 days’ notice before your marriage or civil partnership ceremony. In the current circumstances we ask that you please leave at least 30 days, to ensure that all arrangements are in place. If you are a foreign national, the Home Office may want to increase the notice to 70 days to carry out investigations.

Notice of marriage lasts for one year.

It costs £35 to give notice of a marriage, or £47 if Home Office immigration referral is necessary.

Foreign divorce document checking fees apply, please see Register Office Fees and Charges.

Contact the Register Office on 0118 9373533 to book an appointment.

If you don’t live in Reading, find your local register office and give notice there.

Documentation

At the appointment you will need to show proof of nationality and address. You must bring the original documents; copies are not acceptable.

Please note that if you do not have the correct documentation we will not be able to complete your notice. We may not be able to book you in for another appointment in time for your ceremony, so it is essential that you check the documentation carefully before attending.

For British nationals: You cannot use your short birth certificate to give notice if you were born after 1 January 1983. If you only have your short birth certificate you must obtain your full birth certificate that includes your full parent details, before presenting for notice of marriage.

If you have been married or in a civil marriage previously, you will also need to show proof of how it ended – usually a death certificate or dissolution/divorce documents.

If you are subject to immigration control you will also need to show:

  • a valid passport of Home Office travel document
  • evidence of your immigration status in the UK
  • a UK passport-style and -size photograph of both of you

We work collaboratively with the Home Office to ensure marriages do not break the Immigration Act. The Registration Officer is obliged to check your immigration status. The Home Office may want to investigate further.

Notices for EU citizens from July 2021

From 1st July 2021 if you are an EU citizen marrying in England and Wales you must provide an EUSS SHARE CODE from the gov.uk website to the registrar at your notice appointment to check your status. To qualify as a relevant national we need to check this a proof that you have settled status, pre settled status or an application pending from before 30th June 2021.

If you attend your appointment and do not present this share code, we cannot check your status. A letter of confirmation of settled, pre settled or application pending from the home office is NOT adequate proof; WITHOUT EXCEPTION you must provide the share code and it must be in date (no more than 21 days old).

If you do not provide a share code, you will either:

  • have to postpone your notice of marriage appointment until you have a share code, which could result in a significant delay and will incur a rebooking fee; or
  • have to go through the home office referral scheme, which could mean you are investigated and have to wait up to 70 days before you can get married.

So to avoid disappointment, please ensure you present your EUSS share code on the day of the appointment.

Please be aware that it is your responsibility to obtain this share code and not that of the register office.

You can find more information at www.gov.uk, or apply for a code here: View and prove your immigration status – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Approved venues

Your notice is only valid for the venue you give notice for; if you decide to change venue at a later date you will need to give a fresh notice. It is therefore very important that you know the details of your venue before giving notice.

List of approved venues in Reading

If you want to get another venue approved for your ceremony you should contact us. We do not usually approve open air venues or temporary structures. It should not have a religious connection and should be a public venue.