Celebratory ceremonies

The impact of Coronavirus/Covid-19 on the Registration Service

For details on the effects on the Registration service please see the public alerts page

The process of becoming a British Citizen involves

  1. Applying to the Home Office to become a British Citizen[external link]
  2. If your application for British Citizenship is successful, the Home Office will ask you to contact your local Register Office to attend a Citizenship Ceremony. If you are Darlington resident then you should contact us at the Register Office on 01325 406400 to arrange this.

Choosing your Citizenship Ceremony

During the period of the current Covid-19 restrictions we are not holding group citizenship ceremonies. All of our Citizenship ceremonies will be for individual applicants only and you can choose one of the following two options:

Attend a citizenship ceremony in person

  • The Ceremony will be held in one of our marriage rooms and you can either attend alone or bring up to 4 guests you.
  • The ceremony will be relatively short (approximately 10 minutes) during which you will be required to say a few words which will be provided for you to say.
  • You will need to bring photographic proof if identity with you to the ceremony eg. a driving licence, current passport or ID Card to prove you are the applicant.

Attend a virtual citizenship ceremony

A time can be arranged to contact you on Microsoft Teams (this is the only means of video conferencing that we can use). You will need to have both visual and audio facilities on the MS Teams call so that we can see and hear you during the ceremony.

  • The ceremony will be relatively short (approximately 10 minutes) during which you will be required to say a few words which will be provided for you to say.
  • You will need to provide us with photographic proof of identity for example, a driving licence, current passport or ID Card if identity before the ceremony so that we know that you are the applicant when we speak to you at the online appointment. You will need to email this to us at [email protected].
  • Your Certificate of Naturalisation can then be posted to you or you can collect it from the Register Office when convenient.

Booking your Citizenship Ceremony

You should contact the Register Office on 01325 406400 but only when you have received a letter from the Home Office confirming you have been approved for British Citizenship. We will need a copy of this letter emailing to us at [email protected] before you attend the ceremony.

There is no fee to pay to us for the Citizenship ceremony. The fees for the citizenship ceremony are included along with those paid direct to the Home Office as part of your application for British Citizenship.

Once you have attended the Citizenship Ceremony we will

  • Notify the Home Office that you have attended the ceremony and are now a British Citizen.
  • Contact you about being included on the Register of Electors which includes the right to vote at elections.

Applying for a British Passport

At your Citizenship Ceremony you will be presented with your ‚ÄúCertificate of Naturalisation‚ÄĚ which confirms that you are now a British Citizen. You can use this certificate to access all public services as a British Citizen and must keep this certificate safe. If you lose it or it is spoilt then you should contact the Home Office direct to obtain another copy.

You can also use your Certificate of Naturalisation to apply for a British Passport. For more details see the .gov website passport pages [external link]