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Register office

Last reviewed on 24 September

NHS Test and Trace

From Monday 28 September, customers and visitors to the Register Office and St Helens Town Hall will need to scan a QR code on arrival, to assist NHS Test and Trace.

Change to number of guests

The number of people permitted to attend ceremonies has been reduced to 15. At St Helens Town Hall Ceremony Room, this includes the couple, officiants (two registrars), the photographer and 10 seated guests.

Please note that Register Office ceremonies are for four people only (the couple and their witnesses). Please check with your own venue for the number of people attending, which is now a maximum of 15.

Face covering changes

Face coverings are now required to be worn by guests (including children aged 11+) at all marriage and civil partnerships, unless exemptions apply.

Please be so kind as to advise your guests of this change. You will need to bring your own face coverings as the Registration Service cannot provide them for you.

You do not need to wear a face covering if you have a legitimate reason not to. This includes (but is not limited to):

  • young children under the age of 11 (Public Health England do not recommended face coverings for children under the age of 3 for health and safety reasons)
  • not being able to put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability
  • if putting on, wearing or removing a face covering will cause you severe distress
  • if you are providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading to communicate.

Resumption of ceremonies

We are conducting marriage and civil partnership ceremonies in local venues, including St Helens Town Hall, which is open for weddings only, and are encouraging couples to get in touch.

The maximum capacity may differ for each for venue and must include officiants, ministers, registrars and photographers as well as the couple and their guests. This is so that each venue can operate in a Covid-19 safe way, allowing for social distancing.

At St Helens Town Hall, the largest ceremonies available will be in the Ceremony Room, which can safely accommodate 15 people – including the couple, two registrars, a photographer and up to 10 seated guests.

Couples should think carefully about who will be attending their ceremony as a full list of all guests will be required at venues. Admittance to the ceremony will be only to those on the list, which will be kept for 21 days for test and trace purposes in case anyone falls ill.

The national guidance advises that ceremonies must be kept short with fewer enhancements permitted, such a singing, readings or poems. Exchanging of rings will still be encouraged. Guidance to each couple will be given before their ceremony.

St Helens Town Hall will remain closed except for wedding ceremonies. Non-statutory ceremonies, such as naming or renewal of vows, are currently prohibited.

Birth registrations

Birth registrations have resumed but please check that your local register office is open. For appointments at St Helens Register Office, please phone 01744 676789.

New parents should register the birth in the area where the child was born:

Applications for child benefit or Universal Credit can be made before the birth is registered. More information on how to claim.

Death registrations

If you have suffered a family bereavement during the coronavirus outbreak, we hope the following information will be useful. Please also read this government guidance on what to do when someone dies during the outbreak.

GP surgeries have been contacted and asked to send any paperwork to the correct register office for the area where the death occurred. This must be done electronically and must include the details of the next of kin.

Do not collect a medical certificate of cause of death from a GP surgery yourself. Please wait for contact from a registrar.  

When a registrar contacts the next of kin to register a death, they will be able to purchase the certificates by card over the phone, which will enable access to funeral funds. The certificates will be posted out to you.

Further certificates for recent deaths are now available to purchase online only.

You can instruct a funeral director of your choice before registering the death; we will send the form for the funeral directly to the relevant burial authority.

Copy certificates

We are producing copy certificates but requests must be made online as the register office is still closed to the public.

You can apply online for any copy certificate for registrations of birth, death, marriage or civil partnership occurring in the St Helens, Newton-le-Willows and Rainford areas.