HC Deb 23 October 1899 vol 77 cc490-1
MR. CARVELL WILLIAMS (Nottinghamshire, Mansfield)

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he is aware that within are cent period cases have occurred in which, in consequence of illegalities or serious irregularities committed by registrars, marriages have had to be celebrated a second time; what action has been taken by the Registrar General in regard to such registrars; and what steps have been or will be taken to prevent the recurrence of such incidents.


I understand that a registrar of marriages recently allowed two marriages to be illegally solemnised in a Nonconformist chapel without the production of the necessary certificates, although he knew that these certificates had not been issued and were not at the time due. The two marriages were subsequently re-solemnised in order to obviate all doubt as to their legality. The Registrar General at once required the resignation of the registrar, who accordingly resigned his office. I am informed that there is no record of a similar offence having been committed by any registrar of marriages, of whom there are above 1,000 in England and Wales, and I trust that the steps taken in this instance will prevent the occurrence of any similar case in future.