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Births, Deaths & Marriages

Life events such as a birth, death or marriage are everyday occurences, but ones that we are quite often not prepared for. We often have to face making decisions we have never faced before and this can be a daunting task.

We understand how important it is to you that the service you receive meets your needs and your need for clear information to help you during these events. This section will provide you with a brief overview of the services and formalities you will need to understand.

Assisted Funerals

Under section 46 of the Public Health (control of disease) Act 1984, we are responsible for arranging the funeral of a person who has died within the borders of Bolover District if no suitable arrangements have been or are being made for the funeral.

Before we can arrange for the burial or cremation, the death must be registered.

The home of the deceased person is searched to locate any next of kin, relatives or friends and to find a will or any funeral plans. Financial records such as bank statements will be checked and any finances found by us will go towards recovering the costs of the funeral.

Unfortunately, we do not have any grants available to assist with funeral costs, nor can we help with a funeral that has already taken place. However, if you need help to pay for a funeral and you meet the qualifying criteria, for example you are on a low income and claim certain benefits then you may be entitled to financial help with the costs associated with the funeral. Gov.uk may be able to offer financial help towards the cost of the funeral.

A list of public funerals can be found below. From April 2015, rather than post every month, we will only post information if the Council has dealt with an assisted funeral

February (289kb)      
February (50kb) May (293kb)  August (49kb)   
January (25kb) February (24kb)  March (24kb)  November (36kb) 
January(290kb) February (262kb) March (282kb) April (35kb) 
May (24kb) June(35kb) July (35kb) August (24kb)
September (24kb) October (24kb) November (70kb) December(24kb)
January (277kb) February (277kb) March (277kb) April (39kb)
May (20kb) June (35kb) July (35kb) August (35kb)
September (36kb) October (36kb) November (35kb) December (36kb)
March (277kb)  April (283kb) July (20kb) August (20kb)
September (20kb) October (20kb) November (20kb) December (20kb)


A birth must be registered in the district in which the birth occurs. If a birth occurred in another district, a declaration can be attested at any register office and forwarded on.

To make an appointment to register a birth please contact the relevant register office. The registration will take about 15 to 20 minutes, and must be completed within 42 days of the birth date.

Who can register a birth?
If the mother and father were married to each other at the time of the child's birth, either parent may register.

If the mother and father are not married to each other at the time of the child’s birth, the mother alone may register the birth. The father's details can only be entered in the register if he is also present at the time of registration. If the mother registers alone, it is possible to add the father’s particulars by re-registration at any future time, should they both agree.

Unmarried couples - The right to be responsible for your child
Unmarried fathers are able to obtain equal parental responsibility. All you have to do is for both parents to register the birth of your baby together.

Parental responsibility for your child gives you important legal rights as well as responsibilities. Without it, you don’t have any right to be involved in decisions such as where they live, their education, religion or medical treatment. With parental responsibility, you are treated in law as the child’s parent, and you take equal responsibility for bringing them up.

Unlike mothers and married fathers, if you are not married to your baby’s mother you do not automatically have parental responsibility for them.

Need help to decide what to do?
Parentline Plus has a free helpline where you can talk through the options and ask for advice. Call them on Parentline Plus 0808 800 2222 or Textphone 0800 783 6783

What is needed to register?
The baby's parents must provide the Registrar with the following information:

The baby's date and place of birth, forename(s) and surname.
The mother's full name, date and place of birth, current or last occupation and, if applicable, maiden surname and date of marriage.
If the father's details are to be entered in the register, the Registrar will need the same details as are required from the mother.

What certificates will I receive?
You will receive, free of charge, the following:

  • A Short Birth Certificate - This shows only the date of birth and baby's name.
  • An NHS medical number - This is a white/pink form and is issued showing the NHS number. This form should be taken to the doctor with whom the child is to be registered.
  • Full Birth Certificates & Copies - If you require any "full" birth certificates - showing place of birth and parents names, these can be purchased at the time of registration. Each certified copy is £3.50.

You can order a certificate online from the General Register Office or by telephone (0845 603 7788, Monday to Friday 8.00 am - 8.00 pm, or Saturday 9.00 am - 4.00 pm) or post from the local register office where the event took place.

Find your Local Register Office.


In England and Wales, you normally need to register the death within five days. It's best to go to the register office in the area in which the person died, otherwise it may take longer to get the necessary documents and this could delay the funeral arrangements.

Registering the death will take about half an hour; you may need to make an appointment beforehand.

Who can register a death?
If the person died in a house or hospital, the death can be registered by:

  • a relative
  • someone present at the death
  • an occupant of the house
  • an official from the hospital
  • the person making the arrangements with the funeral directors

Deaths that occurred anywhere else can be registered by:

  • a relative
  • someone present at the death
  • the person who found the body
  • the person in charge of the body
  • the person making the arrangements with the funeral directors

Most deaths are registered by a relative. The registrar would normally only allow other people if there are no relatives available.

A stillbirth normally needs to be registered within 42 days, and at latest within three months. In many cases this can be done either at the hospital or at the local register office.

Documents and information you will need
You'll need to take the following documents with you when registering a death:

  • medical certificate of the cause of death (signed by a doctor)

And if available:

  • birth certificate
  • marriage/civil partnership certificates
  • NHS Medical Card

The information you will need to tell the registrar will include:

  • the person’s full name at time of death
  • any names previously used, including maiden surname
  • the person’s date and place of birth (town and county if born in the UK and country if born abroad)
  • their last address
  • their occupation
  • the full name, date of birth and occupation of a surviving spouse or civil partner
  • whether they were receiving a state pension or any other state benefit

Documents you will receive
If a post-mortem is not being held, the registrar will issue you with:

  • a Certificate for Burial or Cremation (called the 'green form'), giving permission for the body to be buried or for an application for cremation to be made
  • a Certificate of Registration of Death (form BD8), issued for social security purposes if the person received a State pension or benefits (please read the information on the back, complete and return it, if it applies)
    You'll be able to buy one or more Death Certificates at this time, the price varies from local authority to local authority. These will be needed by the executor or administrator when sorting out the person's affairs.

The registrar will also give you a booklet called 'What to do after a death'. This offers advice on probate and other administrative issues that will need to be done around this time. You can also download a copy below.

If a post-mortem is needed, the coroner will issue any necessary documents as quickly as possible afterwards.

If there is an error in a death record, details can be changed or added. Ideally the person who registered the death should arrange this with the office where the death was registered. You may be asked to provide documentary evidence to prove an error was made.


If you wish to be married in the Church of England or Church in Wales, speak to the vicar of the church in which you wish to marry. There is usually no need to involve your local register office.

If you wish to have a religious ceremony at a licensed location other than in the Church of England or Church in Wales, you should usually:

  • first arrange to see the person in charge of marriages at the building
  • normally live in the same district as the church or religious building
  • give formal notice to the superintendent registrar at your local register office unless one of you is subject to immigration control
  • You will need to bring at least two other people who can sign as witnesses at your wedding.

Register Office marriages
You can be married at any register office in England or Wales, including one of six register offices in the county. Each has its own unique appeal and you will find a warm and professional welcome. Our Registrars are there to help and guide you before and during your special day.

It is important to contact the register office of your choice as soon as you have decided on a date to avoid disappointment. Staff at the register office will make a provisional booking and discuss the legal requirements that must be complied with before you can marry.

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Births Deaths & Marriages contacts

 01246 271405

 01773 841380

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