H&F Register Office Set for Same-sex Weddings

Couples can marry from Saturday March 29

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Hammersmith and Fulham Register Office is set to carry out same-sex weddings from this Saturday, March 29, when the new gay marriage law comes into force.

Couples have been able to register to become among the first to tie the knot by giving formal notice of their intention from March 13.

Hammersmith and Fulham Council says this is just one of many services provided by the register office, which has moved from Fulham to Hammersmith Town Hall, in offices with riverside views.

Over 5,000 births are recorded each year, along with an average of 2,500 deaths, 300 marriages and 40 civil partnerships. The office also provides a nationality checking service and citizenship ceremonies.

The council says the H&F citizenship team has helped more than 4,500 people to apply for British Citizenship since 2010 and this new service will assist people applying for "settlement" as the partner of a British Citizen or someone already settled in the UK.

Cllr Greg Smith, H&F council deputy leader, says: " Whether it is births, deaths or marriages our register office is buzzing with activity. You see almost every kind of emotion in this building as our dedicated team help residents through their major life events.

" The new services of settlement checking and same sex marriage mean we are now also offering even more services to residents."

The H&F registry service says it is committed to make all your occasions special and able to offer a wide range of services to meet your needs. Services on offer include:

Registering a birth
Birth’s must be registered within six weeks in the district in which the birth occurred. Register births at the H&F register office Monday to Friday, between 9.30am and 4pm. Last Thursday of each month the office will be open from 11am to 4pm. Currently no appointment is necessary.

Marriage - arrangement and the ceremony
H&F would like to make every wedding day special and ensure the marriage ceremony is a relaxed and enjoyable occasion. For those who wish to have a civil marriage ceremony at H&F register office or at one of their approved venues, get in touch to book the date and make arrangements.

Civil partnerships
On December 5, 2005 the Civil Partnership Act came into force. This means that same-sex couples are able to make a formal, legal commitment to each other by forming a civil partnership, thereby gaining legal recognition for their relationship. Important rights and responsibilities will follow from entering into a civil partnership and there will be a formal, court based process for dissolution of a civil partnership.

Registering a death
Deaths should be registered in the district in which it takes place within five days of the date of death. If you cannot do this, you must contact the office as soon as possible as it may be possible to extend the time limit.

Copy certificates and family history
A copy of a birth, death, marriage or civil partnership historical certificate can be obtained online by post, phone or visiting the office. Applying online is the most efficient way to apply for a certificate if you cannot visit the office.

Renewal of vows ceremonies
Renewal of vows ceremonies are for couples who have been married or in a civil partnership for any length of time and are often associated with a special anniversary. Such ceremonies may also be used by couples who married or formed a civil partnership overseas and who have now returned to this country and wish to celebrate their commitment with family and friends who were not present at their legal ceremony.

Naming ceremonies
Naming ceremonies offer the opportunity to welcome a child into a family. Naming ceremonies can be used for children of any age, including adopted children or stepchildren. You can choose the content of the ceremony and anyone you expect to play an important role in the life of your child can be involved.

Nationality Checking Service (NCS)
The London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham works in partnership with the Home Office to provide a service for any person who wishes to apply for British citizenship. The H&F Nationality Checking Service (NCS) will help ensure that a citizenship application is properly completed and submitted to the Home Office with certified copies of all the relevant supporting documents.
Email: ncs@lbhf.gov.uk or tlephone: 020 8753 5523.

Settlement Checking Service (SCS)
H&F also works in partnership with the Home Office to provide a service for any person wishing to apply for settlement as the partner of a British citizen or a person already settled in the UK. The Settlement Checking Service (SCS) offers both; a checking only service - where applications and documents are checked in advance of a customer’s future appointment at a Home Office premium service centre, and a check and send service, where the application is also submitted by LBHF directly to the Home Office with certified copies of all supporting documents.

To book a ceremony email: citizenshipceremonies@lbhf.gov.uk or telephone: 020 8753 5597/5846.

Hammersmith & Fulham Register Office is at:
Hammersmith Town Hall
(entrance on Nigel Playfair Avenue)
King Street, W6 9JU

Email: registeroffice@lbhf.gov.uk or telephone: 020 8753 2140

Opening hours: Monday to Friday 9.30am to 4pm. Last Thursday of each month the office will be open from 11am to 4pm. No appointment is necessary during the week, but weekends are by appointment only.


March 27, 2014