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About the ceremony

Preparing for your ceremony

Citizenship ceremonies are usually held on a Friday at 2pm. Hosted by the Lord Mayor of Sydney or the Deputy Lord Mayor, the ceremonies are celebratory events for you and your family and friends (you can invite up to 3 guests). The dress code is smart casual.

Please arrive at least 30 minutes before your ceremony is due to start so you can register. You'll need to bring your letter from DIAC and photo identification (a driver's licence or passport). If you have any special requirements, such as the need for assisted disability access, please contact the Lord Mayor's Protocol Office as soon as possible before your ceremony.

Your ceremony will be held in Sydney Town Hall (details below). The closest train station is Town Hall and there are major bus interchanges nearby on George and York Streets. Car parking is not available at the Sydney Town Hall, however there are many private parking stations nearby. The closest parking stations are at the Queen Victoria Building and St Andrew's House.

Lower Town Hall
Sydney Town Hall
483 George Street
Sydney NSW 2000
(Entry is via Druitt Street)

Note: Personal cameras and videos are welcome; commercial filming and photography is not permitted.

The City of Sydney's photographer will take a picture of you during the ceremony and a complimentary photograph will be posted to you about 2 weeks later.

The citizenship ceremony

The official ceremony takes about 1 hour and is followed by light refreshments (for you and your guests).

During the ceremony you'll be asked to take a pledge of commitment. The pledge is a moving and important part of the ceremony and must be repeated in English. Whether you make the pledge to God or take an oath of affirmation instead is your decision. The pledge under God reads:

"From this time forward, under God,
I pledge my loyalty to Australia and its people,
whose democratic beliefs I share,
whose rights and liberties I respect,
and whose laws I will uphold and obey."

All guests are asked to stand and sing Australia's national anthem, "Advance Australia Fair" (see lyrics below).

Your certificate

You will be presented with your citizenship certificate during the ceremony (after you have made your pledge of commitment). The certificate is legal proof of your Australian citizenship. You can frame the certificate later but it must not be laminated (as it will no longer be a legal document).

The City does not produce your citizenship certificate. If you lose it or it gets damaged and you need it replaced, contact the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) on 13 18 80.

Enrolling to vote

Before you leave the citizenship ceremony, you'll be asked to complete an Australian Electoral Commission form so you can be included on the electoral roll. Voting is compulsory for all Australian citizens, so if you don't complete the form at the ceremony, you will need to enrol another time.

If you can't attend

If for any reason you cannot attend your ceremony at the time and date advised, you must contact DIAC immediately so they can reschedule your ceremony. If you do not advise DIAC and you miss your ceremony the City is required to withhold and return your certificate to DIAC.

The City cannot give you your certificate if you miss your ceremony.

Contacts

Office of the Lord Mayor (Protocol Unit)

02 9265 9355

Links

Australian Electoral Commission Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) St Andrews House Car ParkQueen Victoria Building Car Park

Advance Australia Fair

"Australians all, let us rejoice,
For we are young and free;
We've golden soil and wealth for toil;
Our home is girt by sea;
Our land abounds in nature's gifts
Of beauty rich and rare;
In history's page, let every stage
Advance Australia fair;
In joyful strains then let us sing,
Advance Australia fair.

Beneath our radiant Southern Cross,
We'll toil with hearts and hands;
To make this Commonwealth of ours
Renowned of all the lands;
For those who've come across the seas
We've boundless plains to share;
With courage let us all combine
To Advance Australia Fair;
In joyful strains then let us sing
Advance Australia fair."

Last updated: Wednesday, 5 December 2012