Ask Kate: Freelance Registrars

August 6, 2013

Kate Thompson has been offering heart-felt advice and sparklingly different wedding inspiration for ten years. She is married with two children, and often features in the national press. With her warm and caring nature and off-beat sense of humour, she'll answer every question with knowledgable insight and understanding to help and inspire or simply restore your peace of mind.

Q.

Is there such a thing as a freelance registrar? I want to get married in a venue that has a licence but the registrar from the local register office doesn’t work after 1pm on Saturday afternoons and we want to get married at 5pm.

A.

When you choose to marry at a licensed venue, the legal requirements are the same as those for getting married by civil ceremony at a register office but with the added requirement of having to arrange for a registrar’s attendance at your venue. The registrar must be from the registration district in which you intend to marry. There are no freelance registrars.

Licensed venues can take advantage of the full period of time allowed for marriages to be solemnised (any day between 8am and 6pm) but this is of course subject to arranging for the local superintendent registrar and assistant registrar to be present. Most register offices are only open from 10am-4pm Monday to Friday and 10am-1pm on Saturdays but would usually be available for weddings in licensed venues until much later, particularly on Saturdays.

I must say, that this is the first time I have come across such a problem but I would suggest you contact the General Register Office, either by letter to;
The Manager
Public Relations Unit
General Register Office
Smedley Hydro
Trafalgar Road
Southport
PR8 2HH

or phone their call centre on 0870 243 7788

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