Residents registering a birth, marriage or death can look forward to a more flexible and convenient service if proposals put forward by Derbyshire County Council are approved.
The Derbyshire Registration Scheme, which is overseen by the Government’s Registrar General, currently sets out how the countywide service is run and where and how staff are employed.
But the county council wants more freedom to tailor the service more specifically to customers’ needs and ensure it can react to changing demands.
It has drawn up proposals which will now be forwarded to the Registrar General for consideration following approval by county councillors today on Tuesday August 6.
Public Health Councillor Carol Hart said: “It’s generally accepted that traditional registration schemes are quite restrictive and don’t allow the service to adapt to changing circumstances and customer needs.
“An example would be if someone lives in Ashbourne but dies in Chesterfield, the family must register the death in Chesterfield. Under our proposals the death could be registered in Ashbourne, which is not only more convenient for the family but also less stressful at such an emotionally difficult time.
“We want to take day to day responsibility for running the service and make changes to allow greater flexibility and improve customer convenience without needing Government approval.”
Derbyshire’s service currently has a superintendent registrar and register office in each of seven district areas. At the moment any changes to staffing or structure require the Derbyshire Registration Scheme to be formally changed and approved by the Registrar General.
The county council has drawn up proposals to move to a single registration district covering the whole county, with one County Register Officer based in Chesterfield managed by a new County Superintendent Registrar post.
The proposed new arrangements will improve customer choice and accessibility, make the service more flexible and help ensure there is a consistently high standard across the county.
All existing register offices will continue to offer birth, marriage and death registration and to carry out ceremonies. There are no proposed office closures.