Civil partnership ceremonies
Types of civil partnership ceremony
There are two types of civil partnership ceremony - civil partnership at religious places of worship and those at venues licensed to hold Civil Partnership ceremonies, including the register office.
Civil Partnerships at places of worship
There are currently no licensed places of worship within Royal Greenwich for civil partnership ceremonies.
The place of worship where you wish to have your marriage will confirm if it has applied for a licence and it has been granted.
If you wish to have a civil partnership at a place of worship outside of Royal Greenwich, you will still need to give notice to the Royal Borough of Greenwich if you live in the borough. Please contact us for further advice.
Booking your civil ceremony
A civil partnership can take place at an approved venue of your choice in or outside of the borough or at the register office here in Royal Greenwich or one outside the borough.
Please allow as much time as possible to plan your civil partnership and to clear the legal processes. The process of giving notice requires a minimum of 16 days to complete, so it is important that before booking your date you confirm with the superintendent registrar that you can complete the legal process in time for your ceremony.
For register office ceremonies, your booking includes booking of the superintendent registrar. Should you choose to use a licensed venue, you should coordinate both the availability of the venue and that of the superintendent registrar separately. You should not send your invitations until you have confirmation of both the venue and the superintendent registrar's availability. Our Registrars service will provide you with written confirmation of your booking.
Please note that in a civil ceremony none of the music, readings, words or performance that form the ceremony can be religious in nature. The content of the ceremony must be agreed in advance with the superintendent registrar attending the ceremony.
The minimum legal age to form a civil partnership in England and Wales is 16. However, written consent may be required for anyone under 18. Registration officers have a duty to report any marriage or civil partnership that they suspect has been arranged solely to avoid immigration controls.
Royal Greenwich Register Office
Civil partnership ceremonies last up to 30 minutes and they take place in our ceremony room (right).
If you wish to choose your own music, you may bring your own CD. You may wish to say extra vows to one another or ask a guest to give a reading.
The statutory fee of a register office ceremony is £49, inclusive of the civil partnership certificate.
Approved premises in Greenwich
Royal Greenwich has many beautiful and historical venues where you can hold your civil partnership ceremony.
Please see our list of approved licensed venues within Royal Greenwich for further information.
Same sex marriages
The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill completed its historic journey through Parliament by receiving Royal Assent on 17 July 2013, officially making it law.
As of summer 2014 in England and Wales, the Act allows:
- Same sex couples to marry in civil ceremonies
- Same sex couples to marry in religious ceremonies, where the religious organisation has 'opted in' to conduct such ceremonies and the minister of religion agrees
- Civil partners to convert their partnership to a marriage if they wish
- Married individuals to change their legal gender without having to end their marriage