Getting married - your questions answered

Here is a list of questions we are frequently asked by couples approaching their special day. If you would like to discuss your ceremony with the ceremony co-ordinator please book an appointment.

After marriage do I have to change my name by deed poll?

No, if you or your partner are changing your name to one or the other your marriage certificate is enough proof. If you are changing either of your forenames and surname a change of name deed is required and can be supplied by Coventry Register office.

Can we have photographs during the ceremony?

Yes, unless you are marrying in the register office where you will be able to take photographs after the ceremony.

Can I choose my own vows?

You will have a choice of the declaratory and contractual vows however you can only choose additional pledges and promises if you are marrying in the Black Prince Room or at an approved venue and choose to have a bespoke ceremony.

Can I decorate the room?

If your ceremony is at Cheylesmore Manor you will not be permitted to decorate the room. The Black Prince Room is already tastefully decorated and includes seat covers and blossom trees. If you are marrying at an approved venue, please liaise with them.

Can I get married if I am under eighteen?

Yes, however you must be at least sixteen years old. Parental consent will be needed and a form completed and signed by your parents. This form can be collected from the register office.

Can I have a theme?

Yes, we have had many themed weddings including medieval, pirates, Toy Story and Shrek.

Can I have more than two witnesses?

Yes, although this is at the discretion of the registrars who will be conducting the ceremony and there is a maximum of four.

Can I order extra copies of my marriage certificate?

You will be issued with a marriage certificate at your ceremony but can also order additional copies.

Can I talk to somebody about my ceremony options?

Yes, there is the facility to book an appointment with the ceremony co-ordinator to go through all of your choices and what will happen on the day if you are getting married in The Black Prince room or an approved venue.

Can I view the rooms?

Yes, this can be organised by emailing the Ceremony Coordinator.

How do I book an approved venue?

You will need to check availability with the venue. When you have confirmed the date and time you require you can book the registrars.

Can someone give me away?

Yes, you can be escorted in by anyone of your choice.  Please be aware this option is not available in The Library Room or Register Office.

Can you supply the witnesses?

No, you must supply your own witnesses.

Do I have to memorise my vows?

No, all of your vows will be repeated after the registrar.

Do I need to bring any documents on the day?

No, your documents will have been checked when you gave your notice.The only time you will need to bring any paperwork is if your name has changed since your notice. In this instance you will need to provide evidence of how your name has changed.

Do I need to bring my own photographer?

Yes, you are able to have one photographer and one videographer. These are not organised and supplied by us. They can be a professional photographer or a family member or friend.

Do I need to re-register my children?

If both natural parents of the child have married, a re-registration should be carried out under the Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953. You can make an appointment to re-register your child.

Do we need to bring wedding rings?

Wedding rings are optional.

Do you supply flowers?

No, you will need to arrange this yourself.

Have you got disabled access?

Yes, there is a lift in the Register Office building which provides access to the Manor House. The only room not suitable for wheelchair users is The Manor Room as it has a large step down into the room.

How do I book a religious ceremony?

When you have decided a date make an appointment to see the authorised person at the religious venue who will advise you what you need to do.

Are we allowed to throw confetti?

Yes, you are permitted to throw in our courtyard providing it is bio-degradable and eco-friendly. We can provide confetti for your ceremony.

Are children included in the number of guests?

Yes, if they are over the age of two they will need their own seat.

What if I need to cancel my ceremony?

You will need to cancel your ceremony online using your account link to our booking system.  

How do I book the ceremony?

Here's where you can book a registrar.

How do I check availability?

We use an online booking system for ceremonies. If you are getting married in a venue you must check the availability with them first.

How do I order stationery from you?

You can view and order stationery online the ceremony co-ordinator will then be in touch to take payment.

How do I pay for my ceremony?

All ceremonies are paid for online. You will need to log back into the account you created when making the initial booking.

How far in advance can I book my ceremony?

You can book a ceremony two years in advance.

How long after I have given my notice do I have to wait to book my ceremony?

You do not need to wait to book a ceremony until you have given notice of marriage, a ceremony can be booked up to two years in advance. However, a notice can only be given 12 months prior to the ceremony and there is a statutory waiting period of 28 days. 

How long will the ceremony take?

If you are marrying in the Register Office, Manor Room or Library Room, thirty minutes are allocated for your ceremony. If you are marrying in The Black Prince Room or at an approved venue one hour is allocated for your ceremony. These times include your ceremony, signing of the register and photographs.

If I have had a marriage abroad can I register my marriage in the UK?

Marriages of British subjects in a foreign country are legally recognised, but can’t be registered here unless one of the couple is a serving member of, or attached to, the British armed forces at the time of the ceremony. For more information visit

What day of the week can I get married on?

You can get married Monday to Friday and on Saturday morning in the Manor Room and Library Room. Monday to Sunday in The Black Prince Room and at an approved venue. Monday only in the Register Office.

What if I want to get married abroad?

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the necessary documents required to enable your ceremony to proceed in the country to which you are travelling. You should contact the authorities of the country concerned as early as possible to ensure you have enough time to make the necessary preparations. Find out more about getting married abroad.

What if my details change between notice of intention and my marriage?

If you have moved address, changed jobs or had a birthday since giving your notice of marriage you just need to inform the registrar when you are interviewed before your ceremony. If your name has changed since your notice you will need to provide evidence of how your name has changed.

How do I book my notice of marriage?

You can book a notice of marriage.

What if my number of guests exceeds the capacity of the room?

The room capacities have been set by the fire brigade and due to Health and Safety restrictions you will only be allowed the number of guests specified.

What music can I have?

Your music must have no religious content.

What name do I sign on the day?

You sign using the name you are entering the marriage in.

What time should we arrive?

If you are marrying in the Register Office, Manor Room or Library Room both parties should arrive 15 minutes prior to the ceremony. If you are marrying in the Black Prince Room or at an approved venue and wish to be kept separate partner one should arrive 30 minutes prior and partner two 15 minutes prior to the ceremony.

When do I have to pay for my ceremony?

Your ceremony fee is due in full three months prior to your ceremony. If you are booking a ceremony less than four months in advance, the full fee will be due at the time of booking.

When will I receive the documents confirming my ceremony?

Your documents will be sent once you have completed your notice of marriage.

Where can we park?

You are able to park two cars on our drive which is directly outside the building. There are also car parks nearby.

Who can be a witness?

You are required to have two official witnesses of suitable age who must be able to speak and understand clear English.

How do I change my passport?

You can change your passport details up to three months before the ceremony although you will not be able to use it beforehand. You will need the form PD2 and leaflet PD1 ‘passports for newlyweds and civil partners’ which details what you will need to do. If you require a registrar to sign your form after you have given your notice of marriage please bring the relevant documents to the register office where there will be a fee of £30.

Will we see each other before the ceremony?

No, not if you don't want to and are marrying in the Black Prince Room or an approved venue. If you are marrying in the Manor Room or Library Room you will have your pre-interview together.