West Berkshire Council

Registering a Birth

Registering a birth in West Berkshire

A birth must be registered within 42 days (6 weeks).

Birth registration is by appointment only - please contact the West Berkshire Register Office to make an appointment. The Registrar also regularly attends locations in Hungerford and Thatcham (providing there are enough appointments made in those areas).

If your baby was born in West Berkshire, then you'll be given the baby's birth certificate at the end of the appointment.

If your baby was born in another district, eg in Reading, Basingstoke, Swindon, Oxford or elsewhere, we will ask you to sign a legal form which shows all the information needed to register the birth.  We'll send that form to the district where your baby was born.
This is called 'registering by declaration'.  The Registrars in the other district will register the birth and send you the birth certificate in the post;  this can take a couple of weeks.

Who can register a birth?

If the parents of the baby are married to each other when baby is born, then either parent can register the birth.

If the baby's parents are not married to each other and they want the father's details to be shown on the register entry, then both parents must come to the Register Office to sign the paperwork together.  If this is not possible, please contact the Register Office so that we can explain the alternative procedures available.

What does it cost to register a birth?

There is no charge to register a birth.
A short birth certificate will be issued free of charge once the birth has been registered. The short birth certificate provides basic information about the baby but is not sufficient for formal use (eg for a passport application). You can also purchase a full birth certificate.  Please see our pdf icon current fees [57kb].

What documents will I need to bring to the appointment?

You will need to bring the baby's national health number. This is usually found in the baby's "Red Book" or on any paperwork you have been issued with by the hospital/midwife.
To make sure that accurate information is recorded, please bring documents to confirm the identity of both parents (eg passport/driving licence/birth certificate), confirmation of the address of both parents (eg driving licence/utility bill) and if you are married, a copy of your marriage certificate.

Parental Rights and Responsibilities

A summary of pdf icon Parental Rights and Responsibilities [107kb].