COVID-19 COVID-19: Registrars, funerals and cemeteries

Registrars

Last updated 2.30pm Tuesday 23 February 2021

Manchester Register Office

During the national lockdown (from 6 January 2021) the Register Office is open for people attending an appointment. We also continue to register births at the Surestart Centres we attend. If you are attending Heron House or a Surestart Centre to register a birth please ensure you have read the guidance on who can attend the appointment.

To be Covid secure there are strict limits on how many people can attend appointments at Heron House.

  • Please do not bring anybody with you that is not essential for the purpose of the appointment you are attending. 
  • We appreciate that while schools are closed it may be difficult to avoid bringing your children with you, but we cannot accommodate more than 3 people (including babies) at any appointment, so please book a time when you can attend with a maximum of 3 of you. You can currently apply for child benefit without a birth certificate.
  • If you do arrive at Heron House for your appointment with more than 3 people in your party, we will have to turn you away and ask you to make another appointment when you can attend without the children.
  • The number of people allowed to attend a birth registration at the Sure Start Centres we attend is also limited to 3, but it might be possible to accommodate additional children outside the registration room. Please ask the Surestart Centre about this when you book your appointment.

Marriage and Civil Partnership ceremonies cannot take place, except in exceptional circumstances.

Conversions of a civil partnership to a marriage are suspended until further notice.

Citizenship ceremonies can still take place.

Please read the following information for more details of what services are available and how they can be accessed

Following Government advice on COVID-19, and to ensure the health and safety of all customers and staff, Manchester Registration Service is currently only offering the following very limited service:

  • Manchester Register Office is closed to the public unless they have a booked appointment or ceremony. There are strict restrictions on who can attend an appointment or Citizenship ceremony. 
  • Face coverings must be worn in communal areas of Heron House (such as entrances, corridors and stairwells etc), unless you have an exemption from wearing one.
  • If possible, when attending Heron House for an appointment or ceremony please don't bring a pram or pushchair with you (this is to maintain Covid-19 Secure principles within the building.) If you have to bring one, we will ask you to leave it on the ground floor of the building. We advise that you don't leave any valuable items with your pram or pushchair, as we do not accept liability for the loss or theft of any items from the premises. Car seats/baby carriers can be brought to the office if you are able to carry it up the stairs yourself. 

If you have recently entered the UK and are subject to a quarantine period.  You must complete that quarantine period prior to attending this office for an appointment or ceremony.

Death Registrations 

  • All death/still birth registrations will be done by telephone. If a family member is unable to register the death over the telephone they can appoint their funeral director to register the death instead, although it is generally preferable if a family member does register the death. If the family's appointed funeral director is to register the death they must be able to provide all of the personal details, relating to the deceased, required for the registration. To arrange for a registrar to call you back to complete a death/stillbirth registration please send an email to registeroffice@manchester.gov.uk and include your name, contact telephone number, the name of the deceased, and the date and place of death.  If you do not have access to email please ask your funeral director to do this on your behalf. 

To help to make sure that you have all the required information available when the registrar phones you, and to help the registrar make sure that the details are recorded accurately, it would be very helpful if you download and complete the Information form and have it ready for the registrar when they phone. However, this is not essential and you will still be able to complete the registration without it. 

  • If you need to organise a burial within 24 hours of death, there is a registrar available on Saturdays, Sundays and bank holidays, between 10am and 2.30pm.  Please send an email to registeroffice@manchester.gov.uk and include your name, contact telephone number, the name of the deceased, and the date and place of death. Add in the subject box URGENT - burial within 24 hours. If you do not have access to email please ask your funeral director to do this on your behalf.

Birth Registrations 

  • You can find detailed information about the arrangements for booking an appointment to register a birth during the Covid-19 pandemic on our website. 
  • If you are unable to get an appointment straight away, families can now make a claim for child benefit or universal credit prior to the birth being registered, where you have not been able to do so because of the pandemic. Please visit www.gov.uk for further information. 

Copy Certificates

  • Copy certificate applications can be made online and through the post. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic we have limited capacity to process applications and it may take longer for you to receive your certificates. 
  • We will process and post out certificates within our stated timescales. However, you may not receive your certificate as quickly as you would normally expect, as post is taking longer to be delivered than usual.

Marriage and Civil Partnership Ceremonies

  • Following the Government announcement on Monday 22 February regarding the road map to the easing of restrictions, all marriage and civil partnership ceremonies that were due to take place between now and 28 March have been cancelled. We are working through the bookings in date order and if you have a ceremony booked during that period you will receive an email regarding your options. We can only conduct ceremonies in very exceptional circumstances, for example if one of the people wishing to marry is seriously ill and not expected to recover, they are receiving debilitating treatment or undergoing life changing surgery. Please contact us by email registeroffice@manchester.gov.uk if you feel there are exceptional circumstances as to why your ceremony should go ahead.  Please detail the reasons why, and your case will be considered by the Management Team and we will respond as soon as possible.  If we consider your case to be exceptional, we will try our best to conduct your ceremony on the date and time you booked, however this might not always be possible. we will do our best to conduct your ceremony on the date and time you booked, the maximum number of guests for a ceremony is 6, this includes the two of you and up to 4 guests. 
     

The Government plan to ease restrictions around ceremonies as follows: 

  • Step 1:  29 March - Ceremonies can proceed with 6 attendees and will no longer be limited to exceptional circumstances.  

  • Step 2: No earlier than 12 April - Ceremonies can proceed  with up to 15 attendees (depending on the capacity of the room). 

  • Step 3: No earlier than 17 May:  Ceremonies can proceed  with up to 30 attendees (depending on the capacity of the room). With social distancing requirements in place, the capacity of the Pankhurst Suite is 20 attendees.

  • Step 4: No earlier than 21 June: Removal of all limits 

Please note these steps are being reviewed regularly by the Government and is subject to change.  For up to date information please keep checking the Gov.UK website:

  • Government Guidance on face coverings for marriage and civil partnership ceremonies states that all guests attending a marriage or civil partnership ceremony at any venue, must wear a face covering, unless they are exempt.  
  • New bookings for ceremonies will continue to be taken for ceremonies on or after 1 April 2021.  To make a booking please email registeroffice@manchester.gov.uk and include both your names, the date and place you wish the ceremony to take place and a daytime contact number. Please be aware that while any Coronavirus restrictions are in place the most up to date information about any restrictions to ceremonies will be on this page. More detailed information about arranging marriage and civil partnership ceremonies for later dates, can be found on  the following pages on our website: 
  • Appointments for notices of intention to marry and to enter into civil partnership are currently not available to book online. Up to and including 11 April notice appointments will only be made for couples who already have a ceremony booked in the next 3 months.  In line with the Government's advice regarding travel, if couples are required to give notice at a designated register office, we will only be booking appointments for those who are resident in the Greater Manchester area.  If you have already booked an appointment you will receive a cancellation email detailing your options.If you do have a ceremony booked to take place within 3 months and you need to give notice please email registeroffice@manchester.gov.uk and include your name, address, contact number, and when and where the ceremony will take place. 

     From 12 April, the normal service for notices of marriage and civil partnerships will resume. 

Renewal of Vows and Naming Ceremonies

Until further notice all renewal of vows and naming ceremonies are suspended.  We are regularly reviewing this and if everything goes according to the Governments plan we are hopeful that this service will resume on 21 June 2021.  Please keep checking this page for updates.

Corrections 

  • If you require a correction to a registration please contact the Register Office at registeroffice@manchester.gov.uk outlining what it is that needs to be corrected. We can then advise you on how to proceed and the costs involved in making an application to correct the entry in the register. If necessary we can then make an appointment for you to attend the Register Office to make the application. If you turn up at Heron House without an appointment we will not be able to see you. 

Citizenship Ceremonies 

  • For Citizenship ceremonies, customers would normally be expected to book their ceremony within three months of being sent an invitation from the Home Office. Due to the current pandemic circumstances UKVI have extended this period to six months and will keep this under constant review. Customers should be advised that no adverse decisions will be made on applications because of delays caused by Coronavirus.
  • Small group ceremonies are still taking place virtually. See our Citizenship Ceremonies webpage for more information 
  • If you would like to have a private ceremony please email registeroffice@manchester.gov.uk and include your name, home office reference number (if known) and a daytime phone number.  There is a fee of £100 for private ceremonies.

Information about Manchester Registration Service

We also carry out renewal of vows and baby naming ceremonies.

Applications are also submitted through the Register Office for

You can view public notices for those current applications for venues for civil marriages and civil partnerships being advertised through this website. (Alternatively, venues may choose to place the public notice in a local newspaper - one that is published at least once a week)

How to contact or where to find us

Our opening hours

NHS Test and Trace

When visiting the registrars office, you will be asked to give your name and a contact number. In line with Government guidance we will collect this information, to assist with the control of the Covid-19 pandemic.

This information will be shared with NHS Test and Trace where requested, to identify people who may have been exposed to the virus.

View our privacy notice and data processing information.

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