York Registry Office wedding guide

Table of Contents
York registry office building
Bride adn groom in York registry office garden

Unofficial guide to weddings at York Registry Office

As a local York wedding photographer, I have plenty of experience attending and photographing York Registry Office weddings, so I’ve written an unofficial guide for anyone planning, or attending a York Registry Office wedding. (Up dated 2024)

York is a beautiful and historic city, and thankfully it has a really beautiful registry office very conveniently located for great photos and plenty of reception venues.

York is the perfect place for an elopement, or destination wedding. For example, a nice weekend break in York where you can see the sights, get married, and honeymoon all in one. And if you invite guests along, there is plenty for them to do to entertain themselves in this historic tourist city.

Can I get married at York Registry Office if I'm not local?

Yes – you can get married at any registry office you want (if you live in England)! You certainly don’t have to get married at your local registry office. However, you will need to go to your local registry office to “give notice” that you wish to marry. This must be done at least 28 days before your wedding (though if you leave it that late the registry office may be booked up), then once you have been given authority to marry, you can do it in any registry office, or approved premises, anywhere in the UK!

You want a destination wedding in York, but live in Birmingham.

  1. Make an appointment at your local registry office in Birmingham
  2. Attend Birmingham registry office and “give notice”. This costs £30-50 per person (depending on your registry office). (If you don’t both live in the same registration district, you’ll each need to do it in your own district)
  3. Your notice to get married will be displayed publicly in your local register office for 28 days (this is to allow anyone to object).
  4. After this period of 28 days, you will be allowed to hold your wedding ceremony within 12 months of giving notice.
  5. Contact York registry office to book a ceremony (ceremony fees range from £46 to £403 if you get married at York Registry Office) within 12 months of giving notice.

Contact York Registry Office:
York Register Office
56 Bootham, York, YO30 7DA
Telephone: 01904 654477
Email: [email protected]

How much does it cost to get married at York registry office?

(updated Jan 2024)

There are 3 different prices for weddings at York Registry Office – the difference in price is based on the day of the week.

Tuesday weddings are in the small Bootham Suit and you are only allowed 2 witnesses as guests – the ceremony is basic and you will not be allowed any extra guests. £46.

Monday to Thursday weddings are in the Larger Bootham Suite and you can have up to 50 guests. £296.

Friday and Saturday weddings in the large Bootham suite with up to 50 guests. £403.

The fee covers the room hire and the registrars.

Have a look at the official fees page here: https://ceremonies.york.gov.uk/civil-partnerships-marriages/ceremony-fees

Choosing your ceremony room

When it comes to deciding which room to get married in you have two choices – the small Bootham Suite, or the large Bootham suite.

The small Bootham Suite is only used on Tuesdays. It is a very small room and will only be big enough for the couple, the 2 registrars, and the 2 witnesses. There is no aisle to walk down, and there is very little space for a wedding photographer to capture different angles. You will only be able to have a wedding photographer present if they are acting as a witness.

The large Bootham Suite is used on all other days. There is seating for about 50 guests. If you have an elopement with just 2 guests, or a big wedding with 50 guests, you will be using the same room.

If you have more than 2 guests, you have nothing to decide – the only ceremony room option is the large Bootham Suite.

However, if you only have 2 guests (your witnesses) you will need to decide between the two rooms. I have written a list of differences/ things to consider below.


Small room considerations:

  • There will be no walking down the aisle
  • You cannot change your mind and invite any extra guests
  • The ceremony is short with no additional readings
  • There will not be any music 
  • There is no space for the guests to move about to take photos from different angles

Large Bootham Suite considerations:

  • You will be able to chose to enter the ceremony room together or with one you walking down the aisle to the other.
  • You will be able to chose your own music for part of the ceremony.
  • You are not limited to only 2 guests (if you have 2 witnesses, you can also have a wedding photographer, and if you decide to invite extra guests last minute, this will be OK as long as you don’t have more than 50!)
  • The seating is different in the Bootham Suite when you only have a few guests – the photo below shows how chairs are arranged for smaller ceremonies.

Here are some photos of the large Bootham Suite at York Registry Office.

Photos of The Large Bootham Suite set up for fewer guests (below)

small wedding at york registry office

Below are photos of The Small Bootham Room (for up to 2 guests)

Small bootham suite

Is there parking at York Registry Office?

No, York registry office is located on one of the main roads into York, and consequently there is no parking on site.

However, there is an area outside the doors for a taxi, bus, or car to drop people off. You will see in the photo that there are double yellow lines, but taxis etc regularly drop off and collect people from here.

The closest car park is Bootham Row car park, however this is quite small and often full. You need to pay for parking when you arrive at Bootham Row, however, an alternative option (I always use) is Marygate car park.

The benefits of Marygate car park is it is much larger so there are more spaces available, and payment is made when you leave, so you don’t need to plan in advance how long you will be.

Marygate car park (post code: YO30 7DT) which is a 5 minute walk from the registry office (0.2 miles).

Prices for parking at Marygate carpark are:
up to 1 hour £2.80
up to 2 hours £5.60
up to 3 hours £8.40
up to 4 hours £11.20
up to 5 hours £14
over 5 hours £18
after 6pm until 8am £4

Conveniently the machine reads your number plate on arrival, and then when you are ready to leave you simply key it into the machine and pay the price listed.
During school holidays this carpark can get really full – be careful not to park outside the bays or you will get a £25 parking fine!

Also note – the parking machine only accepts card – it does not take cash.

The pink line shows the walking route from Marygate car park.

The yellow marking shows area marked in yellow has a few car parking spaces which are free for up to 1 hour. A ceremony only takes about 15 minutes, so if there is space this could be an option.

Bootham suite York
The Bootham Suite seats up to 50 guests at York Registry Office
Bootham Suite at York Registry office inside
Inside the Bootham Suite at York Registry Office
The back entrance to York Registry Office goes straight into the large Bootham Suite.

Where is York Registry Office?

York Registry Office is just outside the city walls on the north side of York – On Bootham.

From York train station it takes about 15 minutes to walk (0.6miles) and on route you will pass some lovely sights. Most importantly, the city walls and the minster will be on your route.

You can get into the city centre from the registry office in a 3 minute walk straight down Bootham, through Bootham Bar. Bootham Bar is one of the gates in the city walls and consequently a nice sightseeing opportunity for out of town guests. If you continue for another 150 yards you will be at the base of York Minster. As a result of being near the centre of York, you have so many restaurants, pubs and bars, and sights to choose from.

If you want a different route, you can certainly walk through the Museum Gardens. An excellent place for wedding photos during the journey with the ruins of St Mary’s Abbey as a back drop. Walking from the Registry Office, firstly through Museum gardens, and then to the base of the Minster takes 10 minutes (however you will need to allow longer for sightseeing and photos on the way!).

Is there anywhere near York Registry Office for wedding photos?

Yes! Wedding Photography at York Registry Office is my specialist subject!

If you get married in the Bootham Suite (the large room in York Registry Office, which seats up to 50 guests) you will exit the ceremony into the gardens at the back. There you will be allowed to throw confetti, and there is a lovely garden perfect for photos. You will be allowed to use the gardens for about 15 minutes after your ceremony (though actually most of the time I suggest going straight to Museum Gardens for photos), after this time the wedding guests for the next ceremony may be arriving.
After that, you can easily walk to the Minster and Museum Gardens (less than 10-minute walk) – so you will be spoiled for choice when it comes to choosing places for photos.

I am a local York wedding photographer, so I am able to offer my services to couples getting married in York. If you are looking for a wedding photographer for your ceremony at York Registry Office, I have a special photography service just for you. For weddings at York Registry Office on weekdays, I have a special wedding photography offer .

Upto 2.5 hours of wedding photography in York on a weekday: £500. (I can also bring an extra witness if you are planning an elopement).

York Registry Office Gardens for wedding photos

If you don’t have much time to have photos around York, you can use the Registry Office gardens for 15-20 minutes after your wedding ceremony. The gardens are secluded and there are both shaded and sunny spots.

Here is a selection of wedding photos taken in York Registry Office Gardens

Further afield for wedding photos

If you do have the time, I’d recommend using Museum Gardens for your wedding photos instead of the Registry Office gardens.

It is a 4 or 5-minute walk to get to the entrance to Museum Gardens, and the walk there is pleasant. Here are some photos taken during the walk to Museum Gardens.

Wedding Photos in Museum Gardens and beyond

Once you arrive in Museum Gardens you have so many photo spots to choose from. There are the ruins of St Mary’s Abbey, the city walls, beautiful plants and trees etc.

From here you can take a lovely scenic walk around the city walls and around the Minster, the Shambles. 

You have so many places to choose from… here are a few photos I’ve taken around this area recently.

Do you have any questions about getting married at York Registry Office?

I know the Registrars are pretty busy, and it can take a few days to get a response to specific questions – so if you want a quicker response – ask me!

I’ll usually respond straight away if I’m at my desk, so drop me a line – I’ve been to 40+ weddings there so I know how things go! If there is anything you think I should add to this guide, let me know that too and I’ll update it. Or if there are any other useful guides you’d like me to write, let me know that too!

email: [email protected]
Text or whatsapp: 07763682138

Don't go! I spent so long putting all this together for you, hang about and have a look!

September wedding in York

Ear to ear smiles, and an intimate guest list, for this York Registry Office September wedding in York. After a fairy-tail proposal in Disneyland, getting married in York was a dream come true for this happy couple.

Read More »
Middlethorpe Hall group wedding photo

Middlethorpe Hall wedding photos

Katie and David chose a perfect wedding venue just 2 miles south of York – Middlethorpe Hall – a wonderfully restored and beautifully maintained national trust property with stunning grounds. Here is a selection of their wedding photos from their post lock-down September wedding.

Read More »

Wedding Planning

The Happy Otter Photography Wedding Planning Guide Wedding Planning and venue round-ups Real weddings in Yorkshire Real weddings in Durham and the North East

Read More »

Happy Otter Photography

York wedding photography for couples who don't like to pose!

Do you have unanswered questions about planning a wedding in York?

... please think of me when you're looking for a wedding photographer!

Happy Otter Photography
(yes - the name does actually have something to do with otters)

See my York wedding guide, or send me a message -

I'm always happy to share my experience.

Scroll to Top