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In order to vote in UK Elections and Referendums, you need to apply to have your name included on the Register of Electors. This is known as registering to vote. It is a legal requirement to supply the required information.
The simplest way to register is by going online. It only takes a few minutes to register but you will need to have your Date of Birth and National Insurance Number to hand as you won't be able to complete your application without it:
- If you are not registered you will not be able to vote at any Election.
- You are not automatically registered even if you pay Council Tax.
- You can register to vote if you are 16 years old or over, and a British, Irish, Commonwealth or European Union citizen.
- If you are 16 or 17, you can register now but you are not allowed to vote until you are 18.
Anyone included in the Register of Electors may apply for a postal vote .pdf [683KB]. If you know that you will not be able to vote in person, you should apply for a postal vote as soon as an Election is announced or as soon as you become aware that you will be out of the country on polling day.
Postal votes can be sent to an address outside the UK - for example if you are going on holiday - but please remember that it will take time to get there and for you to return it in time for the vote to be counted.
Postal ballot papers are normally sent out a week or two before Polling Day (depending on when you send in your postal voting application), so if you will not be at home around that time you should consider appointing a proxy to vote on your behalf. However, you are advised to contact the Electoral Services Team via email or telephone who will be able to tell you the specific application deadlines and despatch dates for each Election.
You may still be able to vote even if you are unable to get to your polling station on Polling Day for a particular Election by applying for a proxy vote (a proxy is someone who votes on your behalf). You will only be able to appoint a proxy for one Election, unless it is on the grounds of medical or employment reasons.
If you want to appoint a proxy to vote for you, he or she must be:
- Willing to vote on your behalf
- A registered elector
- A British citizen or citizen of the Commonwealth or the Republic of Ireland, or for local government elections, a citizen of the European Union
- Old enough to vote and legally allowed to vote.
If you are a member of the Armed Forces and are registered as an elector, you will be entitled to vote in Parliamentary and local elections in the UK.
Service personnel and their spouses’ resident in the UK may register in either of two ways:
they may be included as an ordinary elector by completing an individual registration application, or they may register as service voters
If you are a British National living overseas you are entitled to vote in UK Parliamentary Elections for up to 15 years after you were last registered in the UK. Overseas Electors cannot vote at Local Government Elections. If you are in the armed forces or crown personnel this does not apply to you. Overseas Electors can register to vote online.
In order to register as an Overseas Elector you will need to contact the Electoral Registration Officer at the local council covering the address for where you were last registered within the UK. If the last UK address you were registered at was in Derbyshire Dales District you can register with us or contact us at:
If you have never been registered as an elector in the UK, you will not be eligible to register as an Overseas Elector. However, if you left the UK before you were 18 years of age you can register at your parents or guardians' address, provided that they were registered and that you left the UK no more than 15 years ago.
Overseas Electors should also apply to vote by post or proxy. Postal votes are sent out approximately one to two weeks before polling day (depending on when you made your application). However, you are advised to contact the Electoral Services Team who will be able to tell you the specific despatch dates for each Election. If you are not likely to be able to receive and return a postal vote in that time, you should consider appointing a proxy.
Students who are away at university or college can remain registered at their family home and may also register at their student accommodation. You cannot vote twice in a UK Parliamentary Election. You would be committing an offence if you voted twice. However, you can vote in a Local Government Election both at home and your term-time address, as long as they are in different Local Government areas. Students may also wish to consider the option of a postal vote.
The Register of Electors contains the names and addresses of all those who have registered to vote within the Derbyshire Dales District.
- Each year after completion of the Annual Canvass, the revised Register of Electors is published on 1st December.
- Monthly Updates to the Register of Electors are also published between January and November. This is known as Rolling Registration.
- Before 2022 there were no monthly updates to the Register of Electors in October and November.
Two versions of the Register of Electors are compiled:
1. The Full Register lists everybody who is eligible to vote, a copy is available at our Offices, Town Hall, Bank Road, Matlock DE4 3NN for public inspection in accordance with legal requirements. Inspection of the register is strictly under supervision and only handwritten notes can be taken. You will not be permitted to photocopy or take images of any part of the register. It is not permissible for an electronic search to be carried out.
2. The Open Register leaves out names and addresses of people who have made a request to be excluded from this version of the register. The Open Register can be bought by anyone for any purpose.
If you move house after the Register of Electors is published on 1st December each year, you can apply to be registered in respect of your new address under the Rolling Registration which takes approximately four to six weeks to take effect.
You can register online at your new address or contact us for a printed form.
Once an Election has been called and you find out that you are not currently registered, you can apply to register up to 12 days before the Election.
Being registered provides you with the chance to have your say about how your local council or the government is run and how they impact on services such as education, housing, public transport, planning and leisure facilities, amongst others.
Also many of the major credit firms check your address against the Register of Electors and you may be refused a loan, mobile phone agreement, mortgage, bank account, etc. if you are not registered.