Civil marriage and partnership premises approval

If you operate a business premises and would like to offer it as a venue for marriages or civil partnerships, you should apply to us for approval.

Eligibility criteria

The approval is valid for three years from the date of issue; a fee is payable on application.

Legislation summary

You can read the Marriage Act 1994 and Civil Partnerships Act 2004 here.

Approval summary

If you operate a business premises and would like to offer it as a venue for marriages or civil partnerships, you should first apply to for approval before applying to us.

Applying for a licence 

You can apply for a new venue licence online.

Once your application is submitted and paid for online it is automatically sent to the responsible authorities, so there is no need for applicants to send in paper hard copies.

We advice you to read our licence conditions before applying.

Notice of application

A notice of the application must be placed in the window of the premises and also in the local newspaper. You can download a copy of the newspaper advert template newspaper advert template (pdf, 93kb) to assist you.

Once the newspaper has published your advertisement, please email a copy of the newspaper notice to the Licensing team at

It's an offence to operate without a licence or to breach the terms of the licence

Will tacit consent apply

No. Your approval will only be issued to you when all the above inspections/checks have been carried out and the premises meets the required standards. The approval may also list additional site specific conditions.

Renewal of an approval

If you already hold an approval, please apply online.

Variation to an existing approval

If you currently hold an approval and would like to add additional rooms to the approval, please contact the registrar for suitability.


You can view our public control fees (pdf, 203kb) here.

Application evaluation process

Once your application is received, a licensing officer will contact you to make arrangements to carry out an inspection of your premises. The inspection will be to ensure that the premises meet the standards required by the conditions of approval.

The council's registrar will also visit the premises to ensure that it is seemly and dignified for ceremonies to be undertaken. 

If your application is refused, you can appeal at a public hearing. You can The following link opens in a new windowdownload the rules governing reviews of decisions (pdf, 41kb) on approved premises.

If you're experiencing issues applying for a licence or if you have any questions, contact us on

Page last updated: 16 August 2018