Notice of Marriage Shenanigans

So, can you tell me if you are related to your fiancé?”

Yesterday The Bloke and I went to the neighbouring town to declare our Notice of Marriage.

The process is essentially there to legally declare our intention to marry within the next twelve months. However, as simple as this initially sounded, I soon discovered that it would be a little more complicated than telling someone and getting a certificate.

We live in a small town on the outskirts of Birmingham. We’re getting married at a venue in Birmingham and because neither of us have a religious faith we have opted for a registrar from Birmingham Register Office to officiate the ceremony instead of a vicar.

HOWEVER, what we discovered was that we had to declare our Notice of Marriage at the place that we pay our council tax to, and this is not Birmingham Council. So, we had to go out to another register office and do the paperwork there instead, which meant that The Bloke had to leave work really early because they don’t do evening or weekend appointments. And (as I have also discovered with a lot of things to do with wedding planning) we would be charged more money for the papers. We declare the marriage, our names are displayed for 28 days, the marriage certificate is released, sent to Birmingham and then the registrar brings it with them to the ceremony.

So, after spending some time hunting down all of the documentation that they were requesting I found myself sitting in a room with a very serious looking woman who was asking me basic questions about my information. I didn’t mind that – I am good at remembering dates of birthdays etc, but then the conversation got a little weird.

Her: So, The Bloke’s name is *******
Me: Yes.
Her: How do you spell that?
Me: Erm… I’m not sure.

Now, there is a valid reason for this. The Bloke and several of his immediate family members are called by their middle names, and in all of the years I have known him I have never referred to him by his first name nor have had to write it down, so I couldn’t remember how to spell it as there are numerous variations. She seemed to accept my explanation and then looked at his passport to double-check. Phew. The rest of the questions were fine, until she caught me off guard.

Her: So, can you tell me if you are related to your fiancé?

I couldn’t help but laugh out loud and replied with a ‘I hope not!’… I did get the urge to ask whether anyone had actually answered ‘yes’ to that question but stopped myself as I figured that if there was a time that I needed to be sensible, then this was it. Although, at the end I did ask her to test The Bloke on whether he knew when my birthday was and let me know if he gave the right answer, and she laughed and agreed.

The Bloke then went in and answered his questions, and when she came out she promptly informed me that he had passed the test and got it right.

Good man. It made me laugh, but she must have thought I was a right plonker…

That’s the last of the legalities to sort out. Now it’s just the fluffy extras to finish off and actually buy a dress!

So, he’s told someone legally that he wants to marry me, so now he has to! At least, that’s why I told him on the way home…

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51 thoughts on “Notice of Marriage Shenanigans

  1. I remember this! We also had to go to another registry office.

    In our case though, we stayed in the same room.

    Him, to my fiancé: “What’s your father’s name?”
    My fiancé: *says name*
    Him, to me: “What’s Fiancé’s father’s name?”
    Me: “…*repeats*”
    Him, to me: “When is your birthday?”
    Me: “July 3rd.”
    Him, to my fiancé: “When’s Fiancée’s birthday?”
    Him: “…*repeats*”
    Him: “Well done, you have passed.”

    It was a bit surreal.

  2. Reminds me of my brother telling me the day before his wedding he didn’t get the license to marry!! So, to make a happy day for the parents, we all had to pretend it was real and legit!! I am glad to say that they are now married which we attended the real one in an office instead of the pretend garden ceremony 🙂 Weddings can be stressful!

      • A justice of the peace did the ceremony, which was okay to do, the signing [the legal bit wasn’t done, they just signed a blank piece of paper] My mum has parkinsons and so to stop her getting very anxious we had to pretend. The legal bit was done a few weeks later. My brother had a business in trouble hence he forgot about the paper very typical them. Everyone had a good old laugh afterwards, though it wasn’t funny at the time!! The stories associated with weddings are amazing 🙂

  3. Well, congratulations! One more step closer! This was hilarious! Hubby just told stupid pigeon jokes on our way to the courthouse to get our license. But, yours is a much better story! Hope you find your dress soon! The dress and the cake tasting, to me are the most fun! ❤

  4. Haha, this brings back memories! I remember when they asked us if we were related, fighting the urge to say “Look at us – what do YOU think?” My husband and I are very clearly different ethnicities!

  5. We went to the very same register office as you, because of where we live. I remember being asked the very same question, it did make us chuckle. We weren’t expecting it either!

  6. nothing’s ever easy is it? I remember my husband’s best friend (and best man to be) came to church to hear our bans being read as Chief was in-bed with a hangover – The vicar was about a hundred and ten at the time and didn’t notice! hahaha!

  7. The first time I got married back in the 80’s, We first had to go thru meetings with our Episcopal priest. Then we had to get a blood test to ensure we both weren’t carrying a specific Gene that would affect any future children. Then we could get a marriage license. When I got married the second time, we eloped and the B+B that did it was next to a town hall. So we got our marriage license at noon and married at one.

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