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Registrars coronavirus updates

Service updates due to the coronavirus pandemic.


Last updated on 7 October 2021

Where possible (if married), only one parent is to attend the birth registration appointment and no other children are permitted to attend. You will be required to wash your hands or use the hand sanitiser provided on entering the building and at all times will need to follow the guidance of the registrar.

Only attend the office at the time you are given, in some cases you may be asked to wait outside of the building until the time of your appointment.

It is still possible to make a claim for child benefit or universal credit before the birth has been registered. You will need to contact HMRC directly to make a claim, details can be found on GOV.UK. This arrangement will cease on 1 November, you will then need to register the baby before you make a claim for any benefit.

Citizenship ceremonies

Last updated on 7 October 2021

If you have received a letter from the Home Office about your Citizenship ceremony please call 01803 207130. Group ceremonies are taking place at Torre Abbey every ten weeks. Private ceremonies are available at The Register Office weekly and are chargeable.


Last updated on 15 September 2021

Death registrations will now be conducted by telephone and appointments can be booked online. Please do not call to book an appointment if possible.

Marriage and civil partnership ceremonies

Last updated on 7 October 2021

Following the Prime Ministers' announcement the guidance for wedding and civil partnership ceremonies, receptions and celebrations have been updated on the GOV.UK website. 

The number of guests will be determined by the venue's licenced capacity and the number of people they can safely accommodate taking the governments guidance into consideration, which will be determined by their Covid risk assessment. Please discuss direct with your venue the number of guests you can have at your ceremony.

Ceremonies booked for The Ceremony Room at Cockington Court 

These are the restrictions and procedures currently in force. These may change in line with updated Government guidelines before your wedding date. When we contact you with regard to payment (approx. 2 weeks before the ceremony) we will be able to give you details of the situation at that time. 

We have been informed by Torbay Council’s Senior Environmental Health Officer that in order to keep the Ceremony Room Covid secure, we must restrict the numbers to a maximum of 11 seated (and none standing) guests plus the couple marrying. This includes all children except tiny babies in arms.  

Face coverings are no longer compulsory for wedding guests attending the ceremony – but they are recommended. The two witnesses will be asked to wear face coverings when signing the marriage schedule. (If the bride & groom wish to wear face coverings these will need to be removed for the legal vows.) 

Other factors to consider are: 

  • No one who has symptoms of Covid -19 should attend. Anyone self-isolating must stay at home. 
  • On arrival (ideally 10 minutes before your ceremony time) you will need to wait in the Rose Garden until we come to admit you (as the building is currently closed to the public). It’s fine for the bride and groom to arrive separately, but please wait in the Rose Garden. Also please note that only the external toilets are currently open. 
  • You and your guests will be questioned before entry to the building as to whether you have any Covid symptoms
  • You and your guests will be asked to sanitise their hands on arrival 
  • One person from each household will be asked to either scan the QR code or leave contact details on the sheet provided to assist NHS Track and Trace. (This applies to the guests not the couple.)
  • If you have a professional photographer who is not one of the 11 seated guests, they will be able to stand in the doorway during the ceremony and once the registrars have left they will be able to take photos in the room
  • Windows and doors will be open to aid ventilation
  • Social distancing to be maintained between registrar staff and the couple and guests. 
  • All those attending are asked to exercise caution and consider the guidance on risks associated with COVID-19 and actions to take to help keep friends and family safe. Space should be made for other people to keep their distance if they want to.
  • Rings to be handled by the couple only 
  • You (and the witnesses) may bring your own pens to sign the schedule if you wish (although a pen is provided and will be cleaned after each individual use)
  • The room will be cleaned after each ceremony  

If you would like to make a booking please use the online booking form.

If you would like to cancel or postpone your booking please email with your full names, address, date of birth as well as the time and venue you have booked.

Give notice of marriage or civil partnership

Last updated on 15 September 2021

Our Registration Service are taking Notices of Marriage and Civil Partnership appointments.

A number of safety precautions have been put in place to protect customers and staff.

Please only attend the office at the time you are given. In some cases, you may be asked to wait outside of the building until the time of your appointment. Please only book your notice appointment at the earliest twelve weeks before your ceremony.

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