Here you will find out how to register a birth and order copy certificates.

You will need to register a birth within 42 days by making an appointment at one of our register offices. The birth must be registered in the district where it occurred.

If this isn't possible, you can go to any register office in England and Wales and a birth declaration will be taken. The birth details will then be sent to the correct register office.

You can make an appointment to register the birth at any of our register offices by calling 0345 600 6400 or register online here.

When you make your appointment, we will ask you if you would like to use our ‘tell us once’ service. See below for more information.
If the parents of the child were married to each other at the time of birth, then either can register. If they were not married, the mother alone may register the birth.

The father’s details can be added if he is present, or if both mother and father make a statutory declaration. It is possible to add the father’s details by re-registration at a later date if both parents agree.

Important information for unmarried couples
The law has made it easier for unmarried fathers to get equal parental responsibility, providing both parents register the birth together.

Parental responsibility gives you important legal rights, treating you as the child’s parent. Without that, you have no right to be involved with decisions affecting your child's life, for example where they live. 

If you have any queries, please call us on 0345 600 6400.
It will take between 20 to 30 minutes to register the birth. If available, please bring the following:
  • both parents’ birth certificates
  • parents’ marriage certificate, if applicable
You will be asked for:
  • baby's date and place of birth
  • time of birth, if a multiple birth
  • sex of the baby
  • baby's full forename(s) and surname
  • parents’ forename(s) and surname and, if applicable, the mother's maiden name
  • parents’ occupation at the time of the birth or, if not employed, their last occupation
  • town and county of parent's birth 
  • parents’ address
It is not necessary for the baby to be there. There is no charge to register the birth but you may wish to buy copy certificates. Please see below for details.

Once the birth has been registered, you will be asked by the registrar to check that the details you have given are correct. It is important that you do this before you sign the register page. If a mistake is found at a later date and you require a correction to be made, a fee of up to £90 is payable.

Other information we may ask for
The following information is required under the Population (Statistics) Act. The details are not entered into the register but are used confidentially for statistical information by the registrar general.
  • parents’ date and place of birth
  • date of parents’ marriage, if applicable
  • whether the mother has been married more than once
  • number of previous live and still births 
If you wish to purchase a full birth certificate showing the parents details, they are available at the time of the registration for £11 per certificate.
The cost for additional certificates is £11 (processed within 3 to 5 working days, posted 2nd class) or £35 (processed within 24 hours (Mon - Fri), posted 1st class)
A baby's forename(s) can be changed once during the 12 months since birth, provided the child has not been baptised with the original name. There is a £40 fee for any forename changes. Please contact your local register office for advice. Historical searches
Northumberland registrars keep the original births, deaths and marriages registers for the county from 1837 to the present day. Naming ceremonies
A naming ceremony is a non-religious way of celebrating your child's birth or welcoming an adopted or stepchild into the family. Ceremonies can be for a child of any age.
This policy explains how the information we collect about you is used and your rights in relation to that information.
Personal information collected from you in order to register an event is required by law. The main legislation which governs the collection of registration information is the Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953, the Marriage Act 1949 and the Civil Partnership Act 2004. You may be legally obliged by these acts, and other pieces of legislation, to provide certain pieces of information. If you fail to provide information you are required to give us you may, amongst other things, be liable to a fine, or we may not be able to provide the service you are applying for, such as a marriage or a civil partnership.
Personal information may also be collected from you if you make an application to this office, for example for a certificate or to correct information contained in a register entry.
The information you provide will be held and processed by registration officers for this registration district.
The superintendent registrar is a data controller for birth, marriage and death registrations and can be contacted at County Hall, Morpeth, Northumberland, NE61 2EF.
The local authority is a data controller for civil partnership registrations and can be contacted at County Hall, Morpeth, Northumberland, NE61 2EF.
The Registrar General for England and Wales is a joint data controller for birth, marriage, death and civil partnership registrations and can be contacted at the General Register Office, Trafalgar Road, Southport, PR8 2HH.
The Data Protection Officer is Steve Smith.
A copy of any register entry will be provided by this office in accordance with the law to any applicant, provided they supply enough information to identify the entry concerned and pay the appropriate fee. The copy may only be issued in the form of a paper certified copy (a “certificate”). An application for a certificate may also be made to the General Register Office.
Indexes for events registered at this office are publicly available in order to help members of the public identify the registration record they might need. Indexes are available at
A copy of the information collected by a registration officer will also be sent to the Registrar General for England and Wales so that a central record of all registrations can be maintained.
Registration information held at this office may be shared with other organisations in the course of carrying out our functions, or to enable others to perform theirs. 
We will only share information where there is a lawful basis to do so for the following reasons:
1.  Statistical or research purposes
2.  Administrative purposes by official bodies e.g. ensuring their records are up-to-date in order to provide services to the public
3.  Fraud prevention or detection, immigration and passport purposes
Further information on data held by the registration service and a full list of the organisations with whom registration data is shared, the purpose and the lawful basis for sharing the data can be found here Annex-A-Lawful-Basis-for-Sharing-Data  Alternatively, staff at this office will be able to provide the information.
You have the right to request access to the personal information we hold about you, to be informed about the collection and use of your personal information, for incorrect information to be corrected (where the law permits) and to request us to restrict the processing of your personal information. In certain circumstances you have the right to object to the processing of your personal information.  Your information will not be subjected to automated decision-making.
Registration information is retained indefinitely as required by law.
If you have any questions or concerns about the collection, use or disclosure of your personal information please contact Kathryn Guy, Superintendent Registrar, Northumberland County Council, County Hall, Morpeth, Northumberland, NE61 2EF.
You have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office about the way we are handling your personal information. Details on how you can do this can be found at
Each register office within Northumberland keeps the original registers for the county from 1837 to the present day.

To apply for your copy certificate, you will need to give us specific details and pay the correct fee.


The birth, death, marriage or civil partnership must have taken place in Northumberland between 1837 and the present day. We will need the following information:

  • name of church, chapel, register office, or licensed venue
  • date of wedding
  • name of both the parties married
  • where and when the birth took place
  • full name of person
  • supporting information, e.g. parents’ names, to identify entries with the same name
  • name of the deceased
  • date of death
  • place of death
Civil partnership
  • name of both of the partners
  • date of partnership
  • where the civil partnership ceremony took place 
If you have all the information we require, you can order a copy certificate in the following ways:
  • Online here.
  • Phone: call 0345 600 6400 and make sure you have a credit/debit card handy.
  • In person: at County Hall, Morpeth, NE61 2EF (between 9:00am and 3:00pm) where you can complete the application form and pay the relevant fee.
  • Post: complete the relevant application form (see below) and return it, enclosing a stamped address envelope and a cheque or postal order made payable to 'Northumberland County Council.'
Please post any application forms and cheques or postal orders to:

County Hall
NE61 2EF
The current fee per certificate is:
  • £11 (standard service - to be collected from County Hall or any main Register Office. Customer will be informed by telephone when certificate is ready)
  • £11 (standard service - to be posted)
  • £35 (priority service - to be posted first class or collected from County Hall, Morpeth or any main Register Office)
  • standard service (UK) – orders are processed within five working days and posted second class or collected from County Hall, Morpeth or any main Register Office. Customer will be informed by telephone when certificate is ready for collection.
  • priority service (UK) – orders are processed within 24 hours of order receipt (Mon-Fri) and posted first class or collected from County Hall or any main Register Office. Customer will be informed by telephone when certificate is ready for collection.
  • requests from outisde the UK - please allow 28 days for delivery.  
Please note that if you require additional copies of a certificate at the registration appointment, a fee of £11 is payable per certificate.

How to pay:
  • Online: when you apply for your certificate.
  • Phone: 0345 600 6400 using a credit or debit card.
  • In person: at County Hall, Morpeth, NE61 2EF. 
  • Post: send a cheque payable to ‘Northumberland County Council’ to County Hall, Morpeth, NE61 2EF.
  • For applications from abroad, payments should be in pound sterling by a cheque drawn with a UK address, accompanied by international reply paid coupons.
Collection points for certificates:
  • County Hall, Morpeth, NE61 2EF
  • Register Office, Hexham House, Gilesgate, Hexham, NE46 3NH
  • Register Office, The Library Building, Walkergate, Berwick Upon Tweed, TD15 1DB
  • Register Office, 27 Fenkle Street, Alnwick, NE66 1HW
If the entry is not held at our register office, we will try to advise you of the district that may hold the entry.

Some marriage registers used by the Church of England or other places of worship may not be completed and will therefore remain at the church. In these cases, we can supply the name and address of the person who holds the marriage entry.

Please make sure the birth, death, marriage or civil partnership you are researching took place in Northumberland since 1837.
We can undertake a search of our records for you if you do not have all the information you need to apply for a copy certificate.

The more information you can provide us with, the easier it will be for us to locate the record you are looking for.

It helps if you can tell us any details, including:
  • the name of the person(s) on the record
  • when the event took place (date, quarter, year)
  • where the event took place (e.g. district, church, parish)
  • names of the parents, if known, to identify entries with the same name 
Are you interested in researching your family tree? Whether you have started the research or don’t have a clue where to begin, our experienced registrars are here to help.

Once we receive your application form and payment, we will send you a confirmation receipt with an expected completion date. If you need the information quickly, you can use our ‘express research service’ for an extra charge.

Please complete the research application form and pay the fee (see above). Make sure you provide your telephone number and email address so we can contact you if we need any extra information.

You can find the family history research application form here

We will either post or email you our results, which will include further research suggestions to help you complete your family tree.

We will also explain how you can purchase copies of birth, death or marriage certificates of your ancestors.

If you already have the details, click here to purchase the relevant certificate

We only hold records of events that occurred in Northumberland but our team can provide application details for those ancestors whose records are held outside the county.
  • Please contact us on 0345 600 6400.
For further information, you may wish to use one of the following services:  
If you are searching for graves prior to 1900 then please contact the Northumberland County archives service at: If you are searching for a grave after 1900, contact the cemetery you believe the person is buried in. Please note, cemeteries may not have all records as some have been destroyed over the years by fire or floods.

Some older cemeteries, which are now closed, may be managed by parish or town councils.