Lady Gilfords House: Discover Carlisle Registry Office

A bride and groom standing in front of Lady Gillford's house.

Nestled in the heart of Carlisle, Lady Gillford's House offers a unique blend of historic charm and modern convenience, making it a perfect venue for your wedding day. Built in 1829 and beautifully restored in 2009, this grade two listed building features elegant panelled rooms, stunning stained glass windows, and picturesque gardens, providing a romantic and memorable setting for your ceremony.

At Lady Gillford's House, the friendly staff take care of all the legal aspects of your marriage, from giving notice to providing your marriage certificate. The registrar will guide you through a personalised civil ceremony, allowing you to include your choice of readings and music. Whether you're planning a small, intimate gathering or a larger celebration, Lady Gillford's House combines historic elegance with modern amenities to make your wedding day truly special.

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I am excited to offer a special offer for wedding photography at Lady Gillford's House. For just £450, you can have up to 1 hour of coverage, perfect for capturing the ceremony, formal photos, and portraits. This is a great option for those who want a concise yet beautiful documentation of their day.

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Understanding the Role of the Registry Office for Your Wedding Day

3. Marriage Certificate - Post-ceremony, the registry office issues a marriage certificate, which is the legal proof of your marriage. You will receive one or more certified copies, which can be used for various legal purposes, such as changing your name or updating marital status on official documents.

Practical Considerations

  • Booking: It’s advisable to book your ceremony well in advance, especially if you have a specific date or time in mind. Popular dates can fill up quickly.
  • Fees: There are fees associated with giving notice of marriage, the ceremony itself, and obtaining additional copies of your marriage certificate. These fees vary by location and the specifics of your ceremony.


Choosing a registry office like Lady Gillford's House for your wedding ensures that all legal aspects are professionally managed, allowing you to focus on celebrating your special day. The blend of historical elegance and modern convenience makes it an ideal venue for couples looking to combine tradition with a personal touch.

For more detailed information, you can visit the Cumberland Registration Office website.

1. Legal Formalities and Paperwork - The registry office is responsible for ensuring all legal requirements for your marriage are met. This includes:

  • Notice of Marriage: Couples must give notice of their intention to marry at least 28 days before the wedding. This notice is a legal declaration of your intent to marry and includes details such as names, ages, marital status, and nationality.
  • Documentation: You will need to provide documents proving your identity, age, and marital status (e.g., passports, birth certificates, and, if applicable, divorce decrees).
  • Legal Verification: The office verifies that there are no legal impediments to your marriage, such as existing marriages or close family relationships.

2. The Ceremony - Registry offices offer civil ceremonies, which are non-religious legal weddings conducted by a registrar. Key aspects include:

  • Venue: The ceremony takes place in an approved room within the registry office. Lady Gillford's House, for instance, offers beautifully restored rooms with historic charm for a memorable setting.
  • Registrar: An official from the registry office, known as a registrar, conducts the ceremony. They ensure the ceremony meets all legal requirements and guides you through the vows and signing of the marriage register.
  • Ceremony Structure: While civil ceremonies are non-religious, they can be personalized with readings, music, and personal vows, as long as these elements do not include religious content.

Check out some weddings that have featured Lady Gilfords below.

Carlisle Registry Office

Carlisle Registry Office & Carlisle Cathedral Wedding

June 21, 2024
Carlisle Registry Office

Two-Day Wedding Celebration in Carlisle

May 5, 2024
Carlisle Registry Office

Winter Wedding at Lady Gillford’s house

February 5, 2024
Carlisle Registry Office

Autumn Carlisle Wedding & The Lakes Distillery Reception

November 21, 2022
Carlisle Registry Office

Small Carlisle Wedding Ceremony with Lake District Reception

October 25, 2022
Carlisle Registry Office

Carlisle Wedding at Lady Gillford’s house

June 7, 2021
Carlisle Registry Office

Alternative Wedding with Trials Bikes and Rock Venue

October 15, 2017

1. Origins and Architecture

Lady Gillford’s House, originally known as Petteril Bank House, was constructed in 1829. The building is a classic example of early 19th-century architecture, designed as a private residence. Its original design includes elegant panelled rooms and stunning stained glass windows, elements that have been preserved and celebrated in its current use.

2. Restoration and Modern Use

In 2009, extensive restoration work began on this grade two listed building to transform it into a modern facility while retaining its historical charm. This renovation included the addition of a modern archive centre, which serves the people of Carlisle. The transformation also marked a new chapter in the building’s history, leading to its renaming as Lady Gillford’s House, in honor of one of its previous owners.

3. Current Functionality

Today, Lady Gillford’s House functions as the Carlisle Registry Office, where it hosts various civil ceremonies, including weddings. As part of the Carlisle Register Office, Lady Gillford's House offers a range of services from birth registrations to marriage ceremonies. The venue’s combination of historic and modern elements makes it a unique location for these events. The registry office is part of the Cumberland Registration Service, offering a range of services from birth registrations to marriage ceremonies.

4. Features and Amenities

The house boasts several key features:

  • Historic Interiors: The interiors include original panelling and stained glass windows, providing a grand and romantic setting for ceremonies.
  • Gardens: The surrounding gardens are meticulously maintained and offer a picturesque setting for wedding photography and outdoor gatherings.
  • Ceremony Rooms: The ceremony rooms are designed to accommodate small to medium-sized gatherings, making it ideal for intimate weddings.

5. Cultural and Social Significance

Lady Gillford’s House holds significant cultural and social value in Carlisle. It serves as a landmark that bridges the city’s past with its present. The building’s adaptation from a private residence to a public service facility reflects the evolving nature of community spaces and their roles in society.

6. Notable Events

The venue has hosted numerous memorable weddings, each adding to its rich tapestry of history. Many couples have chosen significant dates to celebrate their weddings at Lady Gillford's House, adding to the venue's rich history. These events showcase the venue’s charm and versatility.

7. Accessibility and Location

Conveniently located on Petteril Bank Road, Lady Gillford’s House is easily accessible from various parts of Carlisle. Its central location makes it a preferred choice for locals and visitors alike who are looking to celebrate their special occasions in a historic and beautiful setting.

For more detailed information and to explore the possibilities of hosting your event at Lady Gillford’s House, you can visit the Cumberland Registration Office website.

Historical Background of Lady Gillford's House

For group photographs, the ideal spot is outside the stunning oak doors, providing a beautiful and classic backdrop. In case of rain, the ceremony room can be used, time permitting, offering an elegant indoor option. Additionally, there's a charming area downstairs with parquet flooring and a picturesque staircase. The entrance to the archive building is a great choice for a more modern look. There's also a small gazebo in the grounds, perfect for smaller group photos.

Please note, confetti can only be used outside once the doors are shut to keep the venue tidy for all weddings throughout the day.

Formal Group Photo Locations at Lady Gilfords

Portrait Locations at Carlisle Registry Office

Lady Gillford's House combines the historic beauty of the old building with the contemporary design of the archive centre. Popular portrait spots include the classic oak doors and sandstone exterior, the ceremony room, the lovely gardens, and the new building's stylish indoor and outdoor areas. No matter the weather, there are plenty of beautiful locations around the venue to capture stunning portraits.

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A Carlisle wedding party at Lady Gilford's house with confetti thrown at them.

Head over to my Instagram or other social medias to see some more of my work and if you like it, why not get in touch?

Black and white photo of bride and groom walking down the aisle at Lady Gillford's house.
Newlywed couple smiling as guests throw confetti at their two-day wedding celebration, standing in front of a church entrance in Carlisle.

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