Back in 2014 Llanelli MP Nia Griffith took up the cause of those who are surprised and disappointed that on their marriage certificate there is only a space for the name and occupation of their father and no space for their mother.
The requirement to provide the details of the name and occupation of the bride’s and groom’s fathers dates back to 1837, when civil the registration of marriages was introduced in England and Wales, a change which also allowed couples to marry in registry offices. While there have been various changes to laws relating to marriage since that date, the details required have remained largely unchanged.
“This matter was brought to my attention by constituents who have signed the online petition: mothers-names-should-be-on-marriage-certificates. It is unbelievable in this day and age that with all the advances that we have made in equality, we are still using this out-of-date format agreed almost 200 years ago.
That’s why Christina Rees, who was elected MP for Neath earlier this year, is now highlighting the issue by bringing forward a private member’s bill to make the change on the marriage certificate. Usually the Government opposes private members’ bills, but, given David Cameron’s promise in August 2014, that would look ridiculous, so I really hope the Government will support Christina’s bill”