Register to vote

You must apply for a postal vote if you want to vote by post, for example if:

  • you’re away from home
  • you’re abroad and want to vote in England, Scotland or Wales

You do not need to give a reason unless you’re voting in Northern Ireland.

Apply for a postal vote

You can apply for a postal vote for one of the following:

  • a single election on a specific date
  • a specific period if you want to vote in England, Scotland or Wales



There are different forms, depending on why you can’t get to the polling station. Make sure you complete the right one.

You may be able to apply for an emergency proxy vote if the deadline to apply for a proxy vote has passed.

For emergency proxy voting application forms visit the GOV.UK website.


Who can register

You must be aged 16 or over. 

You must also be one of the following:

  • a British citizen
  • an Irish or EU citizen living in the UK
  • a Commonwealth citizen who has permission to enter or stay in the UK, or who does not need permission
  • a citizen of another country living in Scotland or Wales who has permission to enter or stay in the UK, or who does not need permission

Check which elections you’re eligible to vote in.

You can vote when you’re 18 or over. 

You normally only need to register once - not for every election. You’ll need to register again if you’ve changed your name, address or nationality.


What happens if you don't register?

If you meet the requirements for registering to vote (for example, you’re 16 or over and you’re British, Irish or a national of a European Union or Commonwealth country) and you’re invited to register, you have to do so.

If you’re invited to register and don’t do so, your local Electoral Registration Officer could impose a penalty fine of £80.

You won’t be fined if you have a valid reason for not registering, for example a long stay in hospital, not eligible due to nationality or you have severe learning difficulties.


Can you register in more than one place?

It is sometimes possible to register at two addresses (though you can only vote once in a government election). For example, if you’re a student with different home and term-time addresses, you may be able to register at both.

If you want to register at two addresses, visit the GOV.UK website and make two separate applications. We will look at each application and confirm whether you’re allowed to register. 


New voter registration system

A new voter registration system came into effect on 10 June 2014 across the whole country called Individual Electoral Registration (IER).

Under the new system, everyone is responsible for registering themselves. You will need your national insurance number, date of birth and address to register. You can now register online via the website. If there are any queries relating to your application we will send you a letter requesting further information or evidence to support your application. If there are no queries a confirmation letter will be sent out to say you're registered.


Rolling registration

If your details have changed for example name, nationality or contact details please contact us via email or telephone 020 8708 7171 so we can update this for you.

If you have you moved address within or out of our borough you can visit the website and complete the application form which will remove you from your previous address or contact your appropriate new council.


Monthly revision to the published Register of Electors 2023

Last date for application Effective date on Register
Monday 12 December 2022 Tuesday 3 January 2023
Tuesday 10 January 2023 Wednesday 1 February 2023
Tuesday 7 February 2023 Wednesday 1 March 2023
Friday 10 March 2023 Monday 3 April 2023
Thursday 6 April 2023 Tuesday 2 May 2023
Wednesday 10 May 2023  Thursday 1 June 2023
Friday 9 June 2023 Monday 3 July 2023
Monday 10 July 2023 Tuesday 1 August 2023
Thursday 10 August 2023 Friday 1 September 2023
Annual Canvass Annual Canvass 
Annual Canvass Annual Canvass


Electoral Services

If your question hasn't been answered above please look at our frequently asked questions.  

Address and contact details

Electoral Services
Ilford Town Hall
128-142 High Road

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