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Kent Marriage Registers – A Research Tool



Stop Press: As of 9th October 2007 the Kent Registration Services website has been “updated” so that search results no longer show the original registration district in which the registers were held. The results now show “Kent County Council” in all cases. This “improvement” means that there will be a duplication in many of the Register Code Series and it will not always be obvious which register or district is being referred to. The method given below will not be anywhere near as useable as it was before, but I am leaving the information online anyway in the hope that it may still be of benefit in some cases. Meaningful results now depend upon knowing the registration district prior to making a search.

The usefulness of this website has been seriously diminished by this reorganisation, and this may or may not have been intended.

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As of 18th October 2007 there has been another change to the site. The search results no longer show the date of the marriage in the status bar of the browser window, and this renders the facility next to useless.

I consider this to be obviously intentional and seems a churlish reaction from KCC Registration services.





The original method is shown below:

You may already be aware of the service offered by Kent Registration Services at http://extranet3.kent.gov.uk/sp/rois/home.html

This is a searchable database of Kent marriage registrations for the period 1837 - 2002. (Medway registration district and those parts of Kent which are now within the Greater London area are not included. Neither are those from the Cranbrook registration district). There are also some missing entries from other districts. (There are no entries at all for the year 1890 for instance).

Some of you may not be aware that you can check the date and location of many of these marriages before you send for a marriage certificate, to lessen the chances of ordering one which is for the "wrong marriage"

Search results on the website show the District, Register code number, and entry number relating to each marriage.

"Hovering" the cursor over a name shown on the list of results from the initial search will display the file number in the status bar of your browser. This file number includes the date of the marriage in the format yyyy/mm/dd. Alternatively you can “right click” on the name and select “properties” to get the file name.
(If your browser cannot cope with either of these two methods you can copy and paste the complete URL from the address bar on your browser, after you have clicked on a name. You will need to paste the resulting URL into a suitable text editor such as “Word” because it will be very long. It will, however, contain the date of the marriage).

The exact date can then be entered on a new search to find the name of the other person with exactly the same District, Register code number, and entry number. (Use the "Not Sure" facility and single vowels in the surname box). By trial and error you will be able to find the name of the spouse who has the matching details. It all seems a bit “long winded” the first few times, but it becomes easier with use, and gives good results.


A collaborative effort by Pamela Morris-Kennedy, Debra Buchanan, and myself has arrived at a list of the register codes showing which codes relate to which churches, and a copy of this is available for free download by clicking on this link

(The file is an "Excel" spreadsheet so you can add to it yourself, but you can e-mail me at Dave@fadedgenes.co.uk if you would like a copy of the file in "PDF" or "Word" format).


The list is not complete, and some of the codes relate to registers which are not location specific, but overall I think you will be able to find a result or two.


So having established the names of the "Happy Couple" and the date and place of the marriage, you can now send off to the appropriate Register Office for a copy of the certificate, content in the knowledge that you are ordering the right one. See this link for details on Kent Register Offices, and this link on the Kent Registrations website about how to order.


I hope this helps avoid some of those "wasted" certificate orders, and enables the funds thus saved to be used for more of the correct ones to be ordered.


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