Three-month backlog of lockdown babies waiting for Northamptonshire's registration offices

First birth certificates are being issued in the county since March, but it's online bookings only

By Kevin Nicholls
Monday, 22nd June 2020, 10:15 am
Updated Monday, 22nd June 2020, 10:16 am

Northamptonshire's registrars will set to work clearing a three-month backlog of lockdown babies today.

The county Council's registration service for newborns is open for the first time since March via an online booking system.

Around 2,000 babies have been born since the seven offices around the county closed their doors in mid-March.

Northampton's registration office is in the public library in Abington Street

Councillor Sandra Naden-Horley, cabinet member for corporate and community services, admitted: "The past few months have been unprecedented and we are now facing a backlog of appointments which will take some time to manage.

"Health and safety is our number one priority and we are currently working to implement measures which will safeguard our staff, colleagues and customers before fully opening up face to face services.

"Further Government announcements are also expected in the next few weeks which we will respond to accordingly.

"We appreciate that this has been, and will continue to be, a very challenging time and we thank all our service users for their patience and support."

Face to face appointments will take place by invitation only and customers with outstanding exceptional birth registrations or those who had their birth registration appointment cancelled when the Covid-19 lockdown was first implemented will be contacted first.

Customers will be asked to complete and return a birth registration questionnaire in advance to minimise their time in the office, and will then be contacted to arrange an appointment.

The number of people attending the office will be kept to a minimum to complete a legal registration and all payments for certificates will be taken in advance.

Following Public Health guidance, screens have been installed in each office and wipes, hand gel and pens have been distributed across the service.

Plans to restart notice of marriage appointments are still on hold until the Government issues new guidance on when ceremonies might be able to restart.

The council's Daventry register office has been temporarily moved to Northampton.