We hold records of births, deaths, marriages and civil partnerships that occurred in West Sussex since 1837. Our Record Office also holds a number of earlier records, details of which can be found in Record Office sources and collections.
Copies of these certificates can be purchased:
- by phone, post or in person using the standard or same day express service.
These methods of purchase are for UK residents only - see Order a copy certificate for details of how to order if you live abroad.
2 Order a copy certificate
- Order and pay online (Please note that the online booking system cannot be used on a mobile or tablet.)
- Order and pay by phone: 01243 642122
- Submit your request in writing to:
Centralised Certificates Office
If ordering by post, confirm the number of certificates required and enclose payment in sterling covering certificate, postage and packing costs.
Include a phone number so that we can contact you if we need to check any details.
Cheques or postal orders should be made out to West Sussex County Council.
If you live outside the UK, submit your request in writing to the address above, including a self-addressed envelope and payment to cover certificate and international postage costs.
Payment can be by cheque or postal order in UK sterling, made payable to West Sussex County Council. Make it clear in your letter which postal service you have paid for.
Standard 7-day service - £10.00
- Copy certificates issued after the registration appointment will cost £10.00, plus £1 postage and packing, and are posted by Royal Mail first class post.
- Certificates are usually dispatched within 7 days, provided that we hold the relevant register. Family history certificates may take longer to dispatch.
- If ordering by post, confirm the number of certificates required, enclose a self-addressed envelope and payment in sterling; cheque or postal orders should be made out to West Sussex County Council.
Same day express service - £30.00
(Additional copies of the same certificate request within the same order are £10.00 per certificate.)
- Orders must be made online, by phone, post or in person before 12 noon, Monday-Friday.
- Certificates can be collected from 3.00pm the same day, or posted by first class or next-day delivery, provided we hold the relevant register.
- Collections only from the Centralised Certificate Office, West Sussex Record Office, Orchard Street Chichester, PO19 1DD.
- Should an entry not be traced, the registrar will contact you as soon as possible to arrange a refund.
The following postal services are all provided by Royal Mail and will be charged as outlined below.
- First class postage and packing - £1.00.
- Special delivery guaranteed up until 1.00pm next day (Monday to Thursday) - £6.45 (you must be at home to sign for your parcel).
- Special delivery guaranteed up until 1.00pm for delivery on a Saturday (for orders placed on a Friday) - £10.74 (you must be at home to sign for your parcel).
All fees are reviewed on the 1 April each year.
4 What information will I need?
As well as your contact details and the reason you need the copy certificate, you will also need to have the following information.
- Birth certificate - Full name at birth, date and place of birth and father's and mother's full names.
- Death certificate - Full name of deceased, occupation, home address, date and place of death, date of birth or age at death and, if married or in a civil partnership, the name and surname of spouse/civil partner.
- Marriage certificate - Full names for both parties at the time of the registration and the date and place (church or venue and town) of the marriage.
- Civil partnership certificate - Full names and addresses for both parties at the time of the registration and the date and place (venue and town) of the ceremony.
5 Correcting a mistake on a certificate
Sometimes mistakes are made on a certificate. They can be corrected, but only for registrations that were originally made in West Sussex.
Corrections will only be made to original information; new information cannot be added in this way. If circumstances have changed you will need to order a new certificate.
Some errors must be corrected by the General Registration Office (GRO). Further information can be found on the GOV.UK website:
If you require further assistance phone 01243 642122 to speak to the Registration Service. The registrar will explain what kind of correction you require and whether you need to provide any evidence.
Once an error has been corrected, you will be able to order a new certificate.