Complete our Birth Registration Survey

When and where to register a birth
Information needed to register a birth
What will I be asked?
Appointments and Drop-in service
Can I use the drop-in service?
Do I need an appointment?
Who can register?

When and where to register a birth
A birth must be registered in the registration district where it occurred within 42 days. If it is not convenient to attend that register office you can give the details at any register office in England or Wales. They will forward the information to the register office of the district where the birth took place. The register office of the district where the birth took place will post to you any birth certificates. 

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Information needed to register a birth
You will be asked for the following information: 

  • The date and place of birth. If the birth is one of twins, triplets, etc. the times of each birth are needed. 
  • The baby's forename, surname and sex. 
  • The baby's parents' forenames, surnames and places of birth. 
  • The baby's parents' occupations.
  • The baby's mother's address. 
  • The baby's mother's maiden name.
  • The date of the baby's parents' marriage and number of previous children.

To improve the accuracy of birth records, it would be helpful if you could bring one or several of the following documentary evidence:

  • Your passport
  • Your council tax bill
  • Your driving licence
  • All marriage or civil partnership certificates
  • Your birth certificate
  • Deed Poll

If you do not have the above documents, we can still go ahead with registering the birth.


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What will I be asked?
You will be asked questions required by law which may be of a very private and confidential nature.  In most cases they include:

  • Information relating to previous pregnancies
  • Whether or not these resulted in a live birth or stillbirth
  • Parentage of the children
  • Parental responsibility
  • Use of other names by parents
  • Parents' occupations and addresses

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Appointments and Drop-in Service

Drop-in Service
We offer a Drop-in Service for birth registrations with only a few circumstances where an appointment is necessary. The Drop-in Service is available at the Civic Centre Customer Service Centre on Sandyford Road between 9am and 4.15pm from Monday to Friday. Mondays and Fridays are our busiest days, as well as the day following a Bank Holiday, when you might expect to wait a little longer to be seen. 

Please take a ticket and wait to be called by an advisor. You will be waiting in the main waiting area. The registration will take place in a semi private customer service cubicle or in a private interview room.

We operate an appointment system for:

  • Re-registrations
  • Declarations
  • Registration of a stillbirth
  • Couples in a civil partnership where both parents are to be recorded on the birth certificate
  • Any registration involving assisted conception
  • Surrogacy
  • Abandonned children
  • Adopted children
  • Certificate amendments

To make an appointment you should contact the Register Office. Appointments are available throughout the day and take place in private interview rooms. If you register elsewhere, check with the office concerned to see if they use an appointment system.


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Who can register
If the parents are married when the baby is born, either parent may register the birth. If the baby's parents are not married, and they want the father's details to be included in the register, both parents should attend the office together to register the birth. If the parents subsequently marry each other they should re-register their baby.

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Documents Given
You will receive a short certified copy of the entry in the register.

Extra Copies of the Birth Certificate
The registrar will be happy to provide you with further copies. You may find extra copies useful, and you might like to have a copy of the full entry. These can be provided at the time of registration or at a later date. For the cost of copy certificates, please look at our fees page

Birth Certificates for Family History
See the Family History Section for information on searching for certificates for family history and about our indexes.

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At the birth registration you will receive a short copy of the birth certificate free of charge. If you want further copies of a birth certificate at a later time, a range of fees apply.  Please look at our fees page.

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Page last updated: 
11 May 2016
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