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Civil marriage and civil partnership premises

If you use your premises for wedding or civil partnership ceremonies they must be approved by the council.

Approval summary

Marriages and civil partnerships must take place in readily identifiable premises. This means that marriages and civil partnerships cannot be held in the open air, in a tent, marquee or other temporary structure and in most forms of transport.

They must be solemnised in premises with open doors, which is interpreted as meaning that the public must have open access to witness the marriage and to make objections either prior to, or during the ceremony. 

To apply for permission to hold civil ceremonies or weddings, you must be the proprietor or a trustee of the premises.

Eligibility criteria

The application must be in writing (including by electronic means) and include:

  • the name and address of the applicant
  • such other information as the local authority requires
  • a plan of the premises which clearly identifies the room or rooms in which the proceedings will occur
  • the appropriate fee [207kb]

Regulation summary

Application evaluation process

Your premises will be inspected.

Your application and plan will be made available to the public for inspection and public notice of the application must be put in a local newspaper as part of a public consultation process. To be granted your application must be in the correct format and your premises deemed suitable. Conditions will be imposed on your approval if granted.

The Registrar General may issue guidance to local authorities to assist them in making their decision.

How to apply

In the first instance, please contact the Licensing Service who will arrange a suitability survey of your premises with the registrar.

EU logo (small) : This link opens in a new window An online application will require you to register with Business Link, an easy process that gives you an online account that you can use across different government services.

Help (small) Help is provided about online applications.

Application forms

Religious premises as a venue for civil partnership:

Apply for approval

Apply to change an approval

Secular premises as a venue for civil marriage and partnerships:

Apply for approval

Apply to change an approval

Note: We aim to acknowledge your application within three working days. If you have applied online we will acknowledge your application via e-mail.

Target completion period

Application

Processing Times

Tacit Consent

Application for an Approval to use premises for civil marriage and civil partnership

28 calendar days

Yes

Application to change an Approval to use premises for civil marriage and civil partnership

28 calendar days

Yes

What happens if your application is not processed by the local authority within the timescales stated?

Tacit consent applies. This means that you will be able to act as though your application is granted if you have not heard from the Local Authority by the end of the target completion period. If we have not contacted you, please get in touch with us. You can do this online if you applied through Business Link or contact the Licensing Service.

Please note, that tacit consent will only apply for applications that you submit electronically or when your business can show proof of delivery from a post office or recognised courier. 

Failed application redress

  • Please contact London Borough of Hillingdon in the first instance.
  • You have the right to seek a review of the local authority's refusal to grant your application.
  • You must deliver your request for review to the proper officer of the local authority, accompanied by any requested fee.

Approval holder redress

  • Please contact London Borough of Hillingdon in the first instance.
  • You have the right to seek a review of the local authority's imposition of conditions, refusal to renew or revocation of approval.
  • You must deliver your request for review to the proper officer of the local authority, accompanied by any requested fee.

Consumer complaint

We would always advise that in the event of a complaint, the first contact is made with the trader by you, preferably in the form a letter (with proof of delivery). If that has not worked, if you are located in the UK, Citizens Advice consumer service will give you advice. From outside the UK contact the UK European Consumer Centre.

Other redress

If you object to an application for premises approval you may give notice to the local authority within 21 days of the notice of application appearing in the local newspaper.

If you need to complain about eg noise, pollution, or should one licence holder complain about another, please contact the council's Contact Centre in the first instance.

Trade associations

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Article utilities:  Bookmark and Share Print Print this page Last updated: 03 Oct 2017 at 09:02