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Venues for Civil ceremonies

Once you have chosen a venue, contact the Register Office as soon as possible to make arrangements.

We advise you make arrangements with the Register Office before making any final bookings with venues.

Becoming an approved venue for marriages and civil partnerships

Becoming an approved venue can help you earn money for your business and allow people to use your venue for a very significant event in their life.

Licensing authorities can license most buildings, but there are restrictions:

  • The building must be a permanent building or structure.
  • The building cannot be currently or previously used as a place of worship (so a former church or chapel can't be licensed).
  • The building needs to be safe and accessible.
  • The premises is suitable for commercial use and does not need any relevant planning permission.
  • There are also operation conditions attached to the application form [external link, pdf document].


The current fee is £1750.

This is payable at the time of application.

This provides a three year licence for the venue.

A license cannot be granted for a 'one-off' occasion.

Fees cannot be refunded and no changes can made to the application once it has been submitted.

About the licence

Once a licence is granted your venue will be included in a national list of approved venues.

Anyone can approach you to hold a ceremony. Your licence will apply to both Marriages and Civil Partnerships.

The licensing process takes six months:

  • When you express an interest a Registrar will visit to assess the suitability of your venue
  • You will then make a formal application and pay your fee (this is non-refundable)
  • The application will then be advertised to allow for an objections by the public. The fire service, building control, licensing and the register office will visit your venue and raise any concerns.
  • Your application will then be taken to the licensing committee. If it is approved, the Superintendent Registrar will grant your licence.

Notices will appear here when they are available.

Current applications for licences for approved venues for civil ceremonies


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