Civil partnership and ceremonies

If you are entering into a civil partnership and you live in Brent (even if you wish to hold the ceremony elsewhere), you must register your intention to join in civil partnership with our Registration and Nationality Service.

We are very pleased to announce that from 29 March 2014 same sex couples can marry in a civil ceremony. See information on planning your wedding day.

Converting a civil partnership to a marriage

The Marriage (same Sex Couples) Act 2013 provides the opportunity for civil partners to convert their civil partnership to a marriage. Conversions will commence from 10 December 2014. The final details are still to be agreed in parliament, however we know that:

  • Couples can attend any register office to convert their civil partnership to a marriage by appointment only 
  • Both partners will need to provide evidence of their identity (eg passport) and the civil partnership registration (certificates)
  • A declaration is made and signed confirming the civil partnership was not dissolved and that both wish to convert to a marriage 
  • The couple can then be issued with a marriage certificate.
  • You can if you wish to have a marriage celebration ceremony to follow the conversion in a location of your choice. An extra fee will be payable for this element and it does not have to be the same day
  • There will be no fee charged for civil partnerships conversion that take place between 10 December 2014 and 9 December 2015. If you decide to convert after 10 December 2015 then a fee for £45.00 will be charged. However if you had or have a civil partnership after 29 March 2014 then decide to convert to a marriage a fee of £45.00 will also be required. 

As soon as the final legislation is known we will update the details here – if you have any questions in the meantime then please contact us on our online form

Booking a date

The first step in registering your civil partnership is to choose a date and a register office or approved venue for your ceremony to be held. We have a small number of licensed venues in Brent. The Brent ceremony room can be provisionally booked up to 12 months in advance or when you come in to give your notice.

Registering your notice of intent

Your notice of intent is a face-to-face interview stating who you are, who you intend to enter into civil partnership with, and where exactly the ceremony will take place. Appointments must be booked in advance. A statutory fee is charged for this process.

If you are a British citizen or a member of the European Union or a non EEA national, you must give the notice in the local authority where you have lived for the last seven days at one address.

If you are a foreign national from outside the European Union you can choose any designated register office to give your notice of intent to join in civil partnership or marriage. You and your partner must give the notice in the local authority where you have lived for the last seven days at one address. Brent is a designated register office.

Find out what documents you will need to take with you to your appointment.

Your ceremony can then take place 16 days after the notice of intent has been given, or up to one year from the date notice was given.

Your ceremony

A civil partnership needs to be registered in the presence of an authorised civil partnership officer and two witnesses, and this civil partnership registration is subject to a charge. Please visit our fees page for more information on costs.

If you wish to celebrate the registration of your civil partnership with family and friends in Brent, you can hold the ceremony at Brent Civic Centre or any venue in Brent approved for civil ceremonies.

The wording of your ceremony is a personal choice. Some partnerships choose to include vows, poems, readings and music. The only requirement is that these are non-religious. Please see an example script for civil partnerships .

Brent Civic Centre parking

If you wish to hold your ceremony at Brent Civic Centre, please note that there are a limited number of paid-for parking spaces.

Abuse of immigration laws

We are working with the UK Border Agency to identify marriages and civil partnerships which seek to abuse UK immigration laws.

Anybody found to be arranging, facilitating or entering into a marriage or civil partnership solely to gain permission to stay in the UK risks arrest or prosecution. Foreign nationals may also face deportation and be barred from re-entering the UK for up to 14 years.