Maintaining the registers

The Council has a legal duty to conduct an annual review of the electoral register, sometimes referred to as the annual canvass.

As part of this process we send a Household Enquiry Form to all households in the area every year.

We use the information that householders provide on their forms:

  • to identify potential voters who are not yet registered and send them an Invitation to Register;
  • to check whether current voters continue to be resident; and
  • to take action to remove the entries of voters who are no longer resident.

By law you must complete and return your Household Enquiry Form every year, even if you do not intend to vote or do not qualify to vote.

If you are sent an Invitation to Register you must complete it by law if you are 16 or over and a British, Commonwealth or European citizen.

The annual review of the electoral register runs over the autumn, culminating in the publication of a new register on 1 December each year.

Monthly updates

After the new electoral register is published on 1 December, we normally update that register on a monthly basis under the scheme of rolling registration.

Depending on the date an application is received, a new entry will normally be included on the register on the first working day of the following month or the month after that.

The regular monthly updates do not, however, take place in October or November during the annual canvass.

In the event of an election, the law allows you to register to vote up to 12 working days before the election takes place.