Changes to Register Office services due to coronavirus

Changes to Register Office services due to coronavirus

Temporary changes to how you register deaths and still births, marriages and civil partnerships, and how to get certificates, due to coronavirus (COVID-19)

Deaths and still births

We're only registering deaths and still births by phone.

See register a death to make a phone appointment. 

We’ll take your contact details, and a registrar will call you to register the death or still birth as soon as they're available. You’ll be able to ask questions when they call. They’ll ask if you want to use government’s Tell Us Once service on GOV.UK. 

We need the Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD) to register a death. The hospital or GP can send the MCCD to us. If you have the MCCD, take a photo of it and send it to us by email, we'll tell you how when we call you. 

We’ll send you any certificate that you order and pay for or by post. 

Marriage and civil partnerships

Notice appointments

You can give notice for a marriage or civil partnership.

See the give notice section of our  guide to planning your marriage or civil partnership ceremony to:

  • see when to give notice
  • book an appointment to give notice (don't visit the Register Office without an appointment)
  • see what documents you need to take to your appointment (or check your confirmation email)

Not all venues have reopened for weddings or civil partnership ceremonies. If you've booked a place of worship or an approved venue for your ceremony, check with them before booking your notice appointment. 

If you decide to give notice and your venue doesn't reopen in time, you'll need to give notice again when you have a new date for your ceremony. Check the costs section of our guide to planning your marriage or civil partnership ceremony for information about fees.

Designated Register Office appointments

We can still offer Designated Register Office appointments. 

However, if you're travelling from outside the Bristol district, you should only come to your appointment if you think it's essential. 

If have an appointment, and it’s essential you come, you must call first on us 0117 903 8874.

Ceremonies for marriages and civil partnerships 

Government guidance says ceremonies should be limited to 15 people, including the couple. Some venues may allow fewer people because of social distancing measures. Contact your venue to find out how this will affect your ceremony.

All guests attending weddings and civil partnerships must wear a face covering unless they are exempt.  The bride, groom or civil partners don’t have to wear a face covering.

If guests arrive without a face covering they’ll need to buy one from us so that they can attend the ceremony.  They cost 50p each.

Cancel a ceremony

To cancel a ceremony:

  • fill in the refund form to get a refund of your ceremony fee (notice and booking fees are non refundable)
  • send it to

It can take up to 8 weeks to process a refund.  

Postponed ceremonies

If your marriage or civil partnership ceremony has been postponed and your legal notice has expired, you'll need to give a new notice. This applies even if the new date is for the same venue.


Family history certificates

We’re not providing copies of family history certificates at the moment. 

Getting your birth, death or marriage or civil partnership certificate

Birth, death and marriage certificates will be posted to you.  You will not be able to collect them at the Register Office.

If you require a birth, death, marriage or civil partnership certificate urgently, apply online stating the reason for the urgency.