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Civil Partnership Ceremonies

What is a civil partnership?

A civil partnership is a legally recognised partnership between two people.

A civil partnership gives you the same legal rights as a married couple in most matters. You should be sure you are choosing the union/partnership that is right for you and your personal circumstances. East Sussex Registration cannot advise on the suitability of a civil partnership.

Not every country recognises civil partnerships, and opposite-sex couples are unable to convert a civil partnership to a marriage at a later date, so make sure you do your research before deciding. A table defining the differences between a marriage and civil partnership can be found on the Gov.UK website

Unlike a marriage there are no spoken vows. Instead, each of you must read a declaration and sign the civil partnership schedule. This must take place at a Register Office or Licensed Venue, in the presence of an authorised Registrar and two witnesses. 

Planning a civil partnership

East Sussex provides everything you need for the perfect civil partnership celebration. You are welcome to celebrate in any way that you choose, a simple signing of the schedule, or a personalised ceremony, it's your choice. 

Choosing a venue

East Sussex has over 90 licensed venues, and four Register Offices for you to choose from. Something to suit all tastes and cater for all budgets. Even if you are just planning a simple schedule signing, you still need to decide where this will take place. For a civil partnership to be legal the formation must take place at a licensed venue or Register Office. 

You can view all licensed venues by visiting our Venue Finder pages

Booking registrars

Once you have decided how and where you would like to form your civil partnership contact us to book your Registrars. If you are forming a civil partnership at one of our Register Offices, the room and Registrars will be booked during the same process.

If you are holding your civil partnership at another venue, you will need to contact the venue directly to book them and then contact us to book registrars to attend. 

We take bookings up to three years in advance and require payment in full on booking.

You can find our fees listed on our Fee Pages.

Giving notice

Before forming a civil partnership both you and your partner are legally required to give notice. 

Giving notice is done by a face-to-face appointment at your local register office. At the appointment you will be required to show certain documents, and complete notice paperwork with the registrar. For more information, including fees and time scales see our Giving Notice pages

Let’s get personal

Having a civil partnership ceremony provides you the opportunity to celebrate with family and friends, and to personalise your ceremony with the addition of music, readings, and personal vows. Nearer to your civil partnership date we will send you further information about the ceremony content and ask you to complete a ceremony options form with details about any personal additions you wish to include.

Take a look at some of the ways you can personalise your ceremony Personalise your ceremony/Ceremonies in East Sussex.

Ceremony suppliers

East Sussex is home to some fantastic wedding suppliers, ready to help make your ceremony dreams a reality, providing everything you need for the perfect marriage celebration. Start your search by checking out our Supplier Directory. 

Contact us now

 Find a Venue > Giving Notice - Legal Preliminaries > Civil Partnership Fees > Registrar Availability > Converting to a Marriage

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Please refer to our Privacy Notice for details about how and why we use your data.


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