Register to vote

From May 2023, Voter ID is required to be shown if you wish to vote in person at a polling station.

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Who is eligible to register to vote?

To be eligible to register to vote in England a person must be:

  • aged 17 or over (17 year olds and some 16 year olds may register to vote, but may not vote until they are 18)
  • a British or qualifying Commonwealth citizen who has leave to enter and remain in the UK or does not require such leave (the definition of a Commonwealth citizen includes citizens of British crown dependencies and British overseas territories)
  • a citizen of European Union (EU) member states can vote in UK local elections, elections to the Scottish parliament and Welsh and Northern Ireland assemblies (if they live in those areas), and some referendums
    • a citizen of European Union (EU) member states cannot vote in UK parliamentary general elections
    • citizens of the Republic of Ireland, Cyprus and Malta are eligible to be registered to vote in respect of all elections in the UK

Register to vote

The way we all register to vote has changed. The system is now called "Individual Electoral Registration" and instead of using a household form to register to vote, everyone will take individual responsibility for their own registration. The quickest and easiest way to register is online.

Please remember that you will need to register again every time you move house. Even if you are paying Council Tax for a property, this will not add you to the Electoral Register.

Registration can now be done online and you will need all of the following to apply:

  • your name
  • your current and previous address
  • your nationality
  • your date of birth
  • your National Insurance Number

The details that you enter will be used to verify that you, the person making the application, are who you say you are. This reduces the risk of fraud and inaccurate entries in the Electoral Register.

If you are unable to register online you can email us at, or call us to make an application or request a paper registration form by phoning 01427 676576.

If you have your National Insurance Number available when you call we can complete the registration on your behalf.

Who is responsible for changing the system?

The system was introduced by the UK government through the Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013 which became law on 31 January 2013. Electoral Registration Officers are implementing the change.

Registering to vote:

  • is required by law
  • enable you to vote and have a say in local and national matters
  • helps with credit applications (such as loans and mortgages)

Remember to keep your details updated – it will help to keep your credit history accurate. The Electoral Register can never be backdated.

Additional information

Mencap have provided a guide for voting [pdf / 1.36 MB] to be inclusive and accessible to people with a learning disability.

Change of name

If you have changed your name you will need to update your details on the electoral register

Special category electors

Special arrangements apply to some electors (voters), including those who do not meet the usual residence qualification.