Registering a birth

There are five register offices within the Cambridgeshire Registration District - Cambridge, Ely, Huntingdon, March and Wisbech.

Please note that legally the registration should take place within 42 days of the birth.

An appointment is required in order to register a birth; these can be made online via the Cambridgeshire County Council website and following the link to their online booking system.

If you attend a register office outside of Cambridgeshire to register a birth that has taken place within Cambridgeshire (e.g. in Sudbury, Saffron Walden, Bishop’s Stortford, Peterborough, King’s Lynn) a ‘declaration’ of the information will be made to the registration officer in that office. This declaration will then be forwarded to the Cambridgeshire register office in order for the actual registration to take place. All documents (including birth certificates) will then be sent out from the Cambridgeshire register office on the day the registration is completed.

Who can register the birth?

If baby’s parents were married to each other on the day of the birth, either one or both parents can attend the office to register the birth and both parents’ details will be added to the register. If the parents were not married to each other, in order for the father’s details to be entered on to the register at this stage, they must both attend the office together to register the birth.

If the parents were not married and the father cannot attend, the mother can register the birth, but only her details will be added to the register. The mother can, however, still give the baby the father’s surname or another surname of her choice. The father’s details may be added at a later date via a re-registration process. In this situation the registration officer will explain what needs to be done and give out the necessary form to complete.

If the parents of the baby marry after the birth, it is a requirement by law to re-register the birth with the updated information. Any registration office can issue the necessary forms for completion.

Birth certificates

When a birth is registered, the registration officer will issue a short birth certificate which costs £4.00. This certificate is needed in order to claim child benefit. Further birth certificates (full birth certificates) can also be purchased at this point; they cost £4.00. A full birth certificate is required in order to apply for a passport for the child or for opening a bank account for the child.

In addition, the register office offer a selection of commemorative certificates for £10.00 each, which make ideal gifts for new grandparents or as keepsakes in a birth record book.

Registration and parental responsibility

If baby’s parents were married to each other on the day of the birth, both parents will automatically have parental responsibility. Where the parents are not married to each other, the father will acquire parental responsibility if he is named in the child’s birth registration. An unmarried father can also obtain parental responsibility by later marrying the child’s mother, by making a parental responsibility agreement with her or by getting a court order. For further information or advice on this subject please call Parentline Plus on 0808 800 2222.

More Information

For more information on any of their services or products please see their website or use the contact details below.

Cambridgeshire Registration Offices

Cambridge Register Office  
Castle Lodge, 
Shire Hall,     
Castle Street,
Cambridge CB3 0AP 

Tel: 0345 045 1363


Ely Registration Office

Old School House,
74 Market Street,

Tel: 0345 045 1363


Huntingdon Registration Office   

Lawrence Court,
Princes Street,     
PE29 3PA      

Tel: 0345 045 1363  


March Registration Office

March Library,
City Road,
Cambridgeshire PE15 9LT

Tel: 0345 045 1363


Wisbech Registration Office

Awdry House,
110 Ramnoth Road, 
Cambridgeshire PE13 2JD

Tel: 0345 045 1363

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