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How to become a Licensed Venue for Civil Marriage and Civil Partnership

Legally recognised outdoor ceremonies are temporarily permitted in some circumstances until 5 April 2022.

Outdoor ceremonies guide.


6. Application procedure

A licence applicant must:

  • Be a named individual who may be the proprietor or trustee of the premises concerned.
    • If the application is made on behalf of a limited company, the names and addresses of all the directors must be listed.
    • If the applicant is not the owner of the premises, he/she must confirm that he/she has the approval of the owner to apply for a licence.
  • Submit the application form completed in full, together with:
    • A copy of a plan of the premises, showing clearly the rooms to be used as ceremony and interview rooms
    • A copy of the public liability insurance certificate
    • A copy of the fire risk assessment
    • Confirmation of relevant planning consent (if applicable).
    • The relevant payment.
  • Appoint either him/herself or (an)other person(s) as ‘the Responsible Person’ who will be the main point of contact for East Sussex County Council, the Registration Officers and the public at all times.
  • Further details about the responsibilities of the ‘Responsible Person’ are contained in the Licence Conditions.

Upon receipt of your licence application, ESCC will:

  • Ensure that the application is complete and will acknowledge its safe receipt.
  • Contact the fire authority for approval of the premises’ fire risk assessment.
  • Arrange for the Ceremonies Team Leader for the district in which your premises are situated to contact you to arrange a mutually convenient date and time for an inspection.
    • The Ceremonies Team Leader will go through a checklist with you.
  • Place an advertisement on the East Sussex County Council website to seek any objections to the application.
    • Objections must be made during the statutory period of 21 days and must be considered by the Proper Officer for Registration before a final decision on the granting of the licence is made.
  • Arrange for public access to the application and plans at Eastbourne Register Office during normal office hours.
  • Take into account the statutory requirements of the General Register Office, incorporated in this guide.

This procedure will take about six to eight weeks and provided that no objections have been received and all other requirements are met, the licence will be granted.

License conditions which apply to all license holders and their representative(s) are detailed in this guide.

Please ensure that the license holder and all Responsible Persons are aware of these conditions, and have a copy available for their reference at all times.

Apply to license a venue

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