Citizenship ceremonies

To become a British citizen you must meet the criteria set out by the Home Office.

Once your application for British Citizenship has been approved, you will receive a Home Office invitation to book a citizenship ceremony with the local authority named on your invitation.

Due to the disruption caused by Coronavirus, currently all applicants over the age of 18 have six months from the date of their Home Office invitation to attend a ceremony.

 

Types of ceremonies 

We are able to offer virtual ceremonies through Microsoft teams or a group ceremony of 10 citizens at Redbridge Town Hall.

On completion of virtual ceremonies, certificates will be posted by Royal Mail special delivery. Please note you must be in the UK for your virtual ceremony.

Group ceremonies will be a short ceremony with no dignitary or official photographer. Each citizen can bring one adult guest. No children will be admitted to the ceremony.

To book your ceremony you must have a Home Office invitation. We are not able to book a ceremony on approval/decision notifications.

If you have received a Home Office invitation, to book a ceremony forward this invitation by email to Citizenship.Ceremonies@redbridge.gov.uk with your full name and telephone number and an officer will call you.

 

Disabled access

If you or any member of your wedding party or citizenship ceremony are disabled or unable to climb the steps at the front of the building, disabled access is available via a ramp at the far end of the front of the Town Hall (located next to HSBC Bank). You will need to download and complete a Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan (PEEPs) (PDF 320KB)  for each disabled person or those with mobility issues attending on the day and return the form to register.office@redbridge.gov.uk  48 hours in advance of the wedding.

There are 25 steps from the ground floor to the first floor where the Council Chambers are located, with 28 external steps from the emergency exit in the Council Chambers. There is a total of 43 steps from the ground floor to the second floor where the Library Suite is situated. There is a lift to all floors within the Town Hall. Disabled toilets are also available within the Town Hall on the ground and first floors.

 

Where is Redbridge Town Hall?

Redbridge Town Hall, High Road, Ilford, IG1 1DD is situated in the outdoor shopping area opposite The Exchange shopping centre in Ilford. Unfortunately, we cannot offer any car parking spaces and would ask you to make your own arrangements. 

Do I need to bring ID with me?

Yes, you will need to bring photographic proof of your identity. This can be your valid passport, valid Home Office travel document/biometric residence card or full UK driving licence.

You will also need to bring your Home Office invitation (original letter if received by post or digital copy if received by email directly from the Home Office)

Unfortunately, without these documents we cannot give you your certificates so it is important you remember to bring them with you on the day of your ceremony. 

Who can come to the ceremony?

Each citizen can bring one adult guest.

Can children come to the ceremony?

Currently a person under the age of 18 is not able to come to the ceremony.

Is there a dress code?

As the ceremony is a formal occasion, 'smart casual' wear is recommended. Alternatively, we welcome traditional national dress of the citizen's origin to reflect the cultural diversity of Redbridge and the UK.

Can I take photographs or video?

Yes, you can take photographs at the end of the ceremony.

How long will the ceremony last?

It can take up 45 minutes from the time of your arrival to complete the ceremony.

What happens at the ceremony?

The ceremony will take place in a committee room and a deputy Superintendent Registrar will conduct the ceremony. By law, each citizen is required to say the oath or affirmation and pledge in English. This is followed by the National Anthem.

At the end of the ceremony citizens will have an opportunity to take photos.

What if I cannot attend my ceremony?

Please email citizenship.ceremonies@redbridge.gov.uk and an officer will help you to re-arrange another ceremony.

Please remember that you are required to attend a ceremony within 6 months from the date of your Home Office invitation. (If this is not convenient you will need to speak directly with the Home Office).

What if I have special needs?

Please email citizenship.ceremonies@redbridge.gov.uk and an officer will be happy to advise you further. We will try our best to accommodate your needs.

The Town Hall is wheelchair accessible and you are welcome to bring your carer or a supporter to the ceremony in addition to your guest. Please advise us by email ahead of the attending the ceremony.

Any other questions?

Please email citizenship.ceremonies@redbridge.gov.uk

I (name) do solemnly, sincerely and truly declare and affirm that on becoming a British citizen, I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second, her Heirs and Successors, according to law.

I will give my loyalty to the United Kingdom and respect its rights and freedoms. I will uphold its democratic values. I will observe its laws faithfully and fufil my duties and obligations as a British citizen.

I (name) swear by Almighty God that on becoming a British citizen, I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second, her Heirs and Successors, according to law.

I will give my loyalty to the United Kingdom and respect its rights and freedoms. I will uphold its democratic values. I will observe its laws faithfully and fulfil my duties and obligations as a British citizen. 

 

For more information visit GOV.UK website on citizenship ceremonies guidance notes.

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