The latest miscreant to commit this heinous crime is one that should really know better: the Telegraph, supposedly one of our 'quality' newspapers. In this article today they say: "Sir Paul McCartney and his fiancée have posted marriage banns at the same registry office where he wed his first wife Linda more than 40 years ago, it was reported last night." Accordingly, they have been put on the
For the benefit of the unenlightened, a 'registry' is a place where a register is kept. The word includes reference to place, so appending 'office' is superfluous (you would not say "the place where the register is kept office"). On the other hand, a 'register' is just that - no reference to place, thus 'office' is required, if one wants to refer to the office where the register is kept. So, just remember that as the place where birth, marriage and death records are kept uses the word 'office' in its name, it must therefore be a 'register office'.