Marriage and civil partnership

There are two forms of marriage:

  • A civil ceremony can take place in a Register Office or other building licensed for marriage ceremonies. The ceremony is conducted by a Registration Officer, which must be of a strictly non-religious nature; and
  • A religious ceremony can take place in a church, chapel or other building of religious worship. These must have been formally registered for marriage ceremonies. The service is conducted by the minister in accordance with the religious rites and ceremonies of the premises.

For details of charges for marriage arrangements and ceremonies, see: Fees .

Approved premises for marriages

Since 1st April 1995, the Marriage Act 1994 has allowed suitable premises to be licensed for marriage ceremonies. You can marry at any approved premises in England or Wales, irrespective of the district where you live. For a list of approved premises in Calderdale, see: Approved venues for ceremonies .

To book a marriage at Approved Premises, contact the proprietor of the building. You will also need to book Registration Officers from the local Register Office to conduct the ceremony.

Church of England or Church in Wales

To marry at a Church of England or Wales, you or your partner would generally need to live within churches' parish. Although, you can often marry at a church if you are a regular worshipper at a church can.

If the vicar will marry you, they will arrange for 'Banns' being read or a Common Licence issuing. The vicar will also register the marriage. Generally, there is no need to involve the local Superintendent Registrar. If the Register Office needs to be contacted, the vicar will advise you.

Other places of religious worship

The church or religious building, must normally be located within the registration district where you or your partner live. If outside the district, it should be a place of regular worship for either or both of you. The service will be conducted by the Minister, but occasionally a Registrar is required to register the marriage.

To book marriages at these venues, contact the Church Minister and the local Superintendent Registrar, where necessary.

Note: This information is a general guide only. For marriages outside England or Wales, or where the circumstances are not straightforward, contact the Superintendent Registrar for advice.

For more information, visit:  Marriages and Civil Partnerships (Gov.uk).

The legal formalities

Notice of marriage must be given by each of you personally to your local Superintendent Registrar(s). Unless, you are marrying in the Church of England or Church in Wales by Banns or Common Licence.

Both of you must have lived in a registration district in England or Wales for at least seven days. this is immediately before giving notice at the register office. If you both live in the same district, you will give notice at the same office. If you live in different registration districts, you will give notice separately, in your own district.

Note: If one or both of you are subject to immigration control, both must attend the designated Register Office, together. This is irrespective of the district where you live. The nearest offices to Calderdale are Leeds and Manchester.

  • A notice of marriage is valid for twelve months.

    You cannot give the Superintendent Registrar notice of marriage more than twelve months before the date of your wedding.
  • A notice of marriage is valid only for the venue named on the notice.

    It can be possible to alter the date of your marriage (provided it is before the expiry date). To change the location you need a new notice and fee.

After giving notice, you must wait a further 28 clear days before the marriage can take place. For example, if notice is given on 1st July, the marriage may take place on or after 28 July.

To give notice: Book an appointment . Note: Both authorities must have been issued on or before the day of the marriage.

Marriage notices are taken by appointment only at Calderdale Register Office .

Documents required by law

To make formal arrangements with Superintendent Registrars, you must produce documents confirming your name, age, marital status and nationality.

Evidence of Name, Surname, Date of Birth and Nationality

  • A current valid passport;
  • a valid national identity card issued by an European Economic Area (EEA) state, or Switzerland; or
  • for people born in the UK only, a full UK birth certificate. If you were born after 1st January 1983, you will also need your mother's birth certificate (or other proof of her nationality at the time).

Evidence of Place of Residence

  • Utility bill dated no more than 3 months before the appointment (gas/electric/water/landline/broadband/cable - not a mobile phone bill);
  • Bank statement dated no more than one month before the appointment;
  • Council tax bill dated no more than one year before the appointment;
  • Mortgage statement dated no more than one year before the appointment;
  • Valid driving licence (showing the expiry date).

Other required evidence

  • If you have been widowed, the death certificate of your former spouse / civil partner;
  • if you are divorced or your previous civil partnership has been dissolved, the decree absolute / dissolution certificate;*
  • if you have changed your name, Deed Poll documents;
  • if you are under 18 years of age, a completed consent form.

* For divorces granted outside the British Isles, you must send a copy of your paperwork to the Register Office. They can then check this before your appointment. If the paperwork is not in English, you must provide a certified translation.

From 1st November 2017 there is a fee for this. The fee depends on where your divorce was granted. You will be advised of this when you submit your paperwork.

Note: The fee is payable at your appointment in addition to your notice fee.