This page covers planning your arrival, departure and time spent at the Town Hall (apart from during the ceremony), and is relevant to all couples, no matter which room you have chosen.

You can find answers to questions about ceremonies in specific rooms by visiting this page and choosing your ceremony room.

Photo credit: Joasis Photography www.joasisweddingphotography.co.uk

Please find below our most frequently asked questions about ceremonies at the Town Hall.

If you have a question which is not on this list, please email registrars@islington.gov.uk and we will try our best to answer it.

Yes. There is a ramp to the Town Hall building and lifts to all levels, as well as accessible bathrooms.

Guide dogs and other trained assistance animals are welcomed. Your animal should wear their vest to show that they are a trained assistance animal and not just your pet. If your animal does not have a vest, please bring the paperwork to show that they are a trained assistance animal.

We have limited special access parking spaces available on the Town Hall forecourt, and these need to be booked well in advance by emailing securitytownhall@islington.gov.uk

If you or any of your guests have a disability, please click here to complete a personal emergency evacuation plan form so we can ensure safety on your ceremony day.

We don’t have general parking available at the Town Hall, so we advise your guests to arrive by public transport.

If you or your guests have a disability, we have limited special access parking spaces available on the Town Hall forecourt, and these need to be booked well in advance by emailing securitytownhall@islington.gov.uk

Chauffeured cars, taxis and buses are able to stop outside the building to drop off or collect couples or guests.

Covid-19 is still present in the population, and there is still a need for caution. The safety of our staff, our customers, and our community is our highest priority.

Please postpone the marriage/civil partnership if you have any of the symptoms of coronavirus or are testing positive.

We recommend you and your guests take lateral flow tests before attending your ceremony.

We are asking all couples and guests to continue to take sensible precautions to help our service remain open to register births, deaths, marriages and civil partnerships. We are sure you can appreciate that we are privileged enough to attend lots of special days, and we would be devastated to have to cancel ceremonies if our staff become unwell after coming into contact with ceremony parties.

While this could be a fun thought, the only animals permitted in the Town Hall are guide dogs and other assistance animals. Your animal should wear their vest to show that they are a trained assistance animal and not just your pet. If your animal does not have a vest, please bring the paperwork to show that they are a trained assistance animal.

We have floral arrangements in each ceremony room so you don’t need to bring your own for the room to feel ceremonial.

You are welcome to bring your own personal flowers with you, but you won’t be able to take them into the room beforehand. They will need to be brought into and taken out of the room within the ceremony slot you have booked.

Sadly no.

Our rooms are used for more than one ceremony a day, so we are unable to allow access to decorate the room before your ceremony.

In addition to this, Islington Town Hall is a listed building so we can’t allow anything to be attached to the walls or chairs.

You are welcome to bring your own personal flowers with you, but you won’t be able to take them into the room beforehand. They will need to be brought into and taken out of the room within the ceremony slot you have booked.

Unfortunately, no. There is not enough time between ceremonies to rearrange the seating or layout.

There is no storage space at the Town Hall, so having deliveries made in advance of your ceremony is not possible.

No, only public bathrooms.

Each room has a strict maximum number of people that can be safely accommodated, decided by fire regulations. If your guests exceed the number allowed in the room, then some of them will be asked to remain outside the building.

If you find out after you book a room that it will be too small for your expected guest numbers, and you wish to move the ceremony to a larger room, contact us and we will check the availability of other rooms on your chosen date. Extra costs will apply if there is a difference in fees between the rooms.

If you are seeing each other before the start of the ceremony, please both arrive with your guests around 15 minutes before the ceremony start time.

If you don’t want to see each other before the start of the ceremony, we would advise that one partner arrives with the guests around 15 minutes before the ceremony start time, and the other partner about 10 minutes before. This way your ceremony should be able to start on time.

Please note that here is no facility to conduct separate interviews in Room 99, or the statutory room at any time, so if you have chosen one of these rooms, you will need to be interviewed together.

It is extremely important that you are all on time, as priority must be given to cleaning the room between ceremonies.

If you are seeing each other before the start of the ceremony, please both arrive with your guests around 15 minutes before the ceremony start time.

If you don’t want to see each other before the start of the ceremony, we would advise that one partner arrives with the guests around 15 minutes before the ceremony start time, and the other partner about 10 minutes before. This way your ceremony should be able to start on time.

By both arriving at different times we are able to minimise the risk of you accidently running into each other before the ceremony begins. At the Town Hall we have our own ushers to assist you once you enter the building.

Please note that here is no facility to conduct separate interviews in Room 99 or the statutory room at any time, so if you have chosen one of these rooms, you will need to be interviewed together.

Our staff will show your guests to the ceremony room, and show you and your partner to another room/s to for your pre-ceremony interview.

You will then enter the ceremony room and the ceremony will begin. The ceremony with no added personalisation takes around 20 minutes to complete, including the signing of the paperwork. If you are adding readings and/or personal vows, please allow 30-40 minutes for your ceremony.

You will then be able to take some photographs inside and outside the Town Hall building, and then you will be able to continue your celebrations elsewhere as planned.

Before the ceremony, you and your partner will need to check the details to go on the marriage or civil partnership certificate.

The registrars will take you to a private room, and ask you the same questions you were asked when you gave notice, for example, your full name and date of birth etc. This is to make sure that the details on the legal record of your marriage/civil partnership are correct and up-to-date on the day of your ceremony.

They will then ask you to visually check the paperwork to make sure it is correct.

It is very important that you check the paperwork very carefully, as any mistakes noticed after the paperwork is signed will need a formal correction request made to the General Register Office for a fee of £90.00.

You do not need to bring any identification to this interview, unless our staff have specifically advised you to bring documents because of your individual circumstances.

There are some details that could change such as your address and occupation. If these details change before the day of your ceremony, there is nothing you need to do. You do not need to bring any documents to support those changes; you just need to confirm them with the registrar at the interview.

If anything else changes, like your name, please email us at registrars@islington.gov.uk as soon as possible to discuss what is required.

In the Council Chamber, you are able to invite up to 6 live musicians.

As the Mayor’s Parlour is a small room, if you wish to have musicians playing, they must be counted as one/some of your 4 guests.

Please note that bagpipes and drums cannot be played inside the Town Hall as they can be heard in other ceremony rooms.

Live musicians can’t be accommodated in Room 99, and recorded music is not used in Room 99 or the statutory room on weekdays, as these ceremonies are short and simple. Please see the ‘Planning the ceremony (ceremonies in Room 99 and statutory room)’ section of this page for more information on these ceremonies.

We aim to be able to give you access 15 minutes before your scheduled ceremony start time.

Our staff will show your guests into the ceremony room when it is ready.

Photographers and musicians will only be able to enter the room when the room is clean and ready. This may mean they are not able to enter the room before the guests.

A member of staff will show the ceremony party into the room at the right time.

The whole ceremony will need to be legally conducted by one of our registrars, though your friends and family can read poems etc. (subject to the room you have booked).

Yes, you are welcome to, but please be aware we don’t have reliable Wi-Fi in all of the Town Hall ceremony rooms, so you will need to use your own data.

Legally, you need to choose two witnesses who will attend and sign to say they have witnessed the ceremony/signing.

The size and layout of the schedule document that they sign means that you are not able to include more than two witnesses.

Yes, they can be anyone you like, as long as they speak good English and are an adult.

If either you or your partner requires an interpreter, that person must also act as one of your two witnesses.

You need to bring your own witnesses as we do not have the staff levels to supply them.

You should always sign the schedule in the name you are using at the time. If you are planning to change your name after the ceremony, you could consider this to be the last time you sign in your old name.

Yes, you will be able to take some photographs inside the Town Hall building after the ceremony.

We don’t limit the amount of time you are able to have pictures, but we do ask that you are considerate of other couples who also want to take pictures.

You can also have some photographs on the steps outside.

We do not permit anything messy, potentially damaging, or on fire! You are welcome to have these things outside of the building, as long as it doesn’t cause damage, and it is legal to do so. If you have something in mind that is unusual but not messy/hazardous/on fire, please ask us beforehand if it will be possible.

We also only permit the use of eco-friendly options like biodegradable confetti outside the Town Hall. Rice is not permitted as it poses health and safety risks with the stairs in inclement weather and attracts pigeons.

There is no alcohol permitted at any time, in any of the rooms in the Town Hall, as we don’t have an alcohol licence. You are welcome to have that celebratory glass of champagne outside instead, just as long as you aren’t impeding the access of other ceremony parties.

Although there is no facility for holding any kind of reception within the Town Hall, the Islington Assembly Hall next door to the Town Hall can be hired for ceremonies and receptions. For availability and costs, please email contact them directly at assemblyhall@islington.gov.uk

While there is no parking on Upper Street outside the Town Hall, your booked transport will be allowed to stop there long enough for you and your guests to get on.

Most ceremonies will take about 20 minutes for a very simple ceremony, to 40 minutes for a ceremony with three readings and personal vows, including photographs.

Ideally your transport should be there waiting for you as you all emerge from the Town Hall ready to whisk you away to your reception.

In our experience, there is no need for a rehearsal, and we do not offer rehearsals at Islington and London City.