Households in Durham will soon be receiving a form asking residents to check and confirm whether the information that appears on the electoral register for those living at their address is correct.
It’s the first stage of Durham County Council’s annual voter registration canvass.
The aim of the form is to ensure the electoral register is up to date and to identify any residents who are not registered so that they can be encouraged to do so.
With the Police and Crime Commissioner election taking place across the country in May 2016, this is an opportunity for residents to make sure that when the elections take place they will easily be able to take part.
Colette Longbottom, electoral registration officer at Durham County Council, said: “Anyone who wants to vote must be registered.
“To make sure you are able to have your say at the elections next year, simply check the form when it arrives and return it as promptly as possible.
“If you’re not currently registered, we’ll send you information explaining how to do this or you can simply go online to apply to register.”
It’s particularly important that anyone who has moved address recently looks out for the form and checks whether they are registered.
Research by the independent Electoral Commission indicates that across Great Britain, recent home movers are far less likely to be registered than those that have lived at the same address for a long time.
The research showed that 94 per cent of people who have been at their property for more than sixteen years will be registered compared to 40 per cent of people who have lived at an address for less than one year.
The same research indicates that while almost 95 per cent of outright home owners are registered, this is the case for only 63 per cent of private renters.
Kay Jenkins, head of English regions at the Electoral Commission said: “The annual canvass is an opportunity for people to easily check whether they’re registered.
“It’s essential for a healthy democracy that everyone who is entitled to vote is able to, and for those who need to registering is now easier than ever with the online system of registration.
“If you have changed address in the last year, it’s particularly likely that you will need to register at your new address, so check the form as soon as it arrives.”
Any residents who have any questions can contact the elections team on 03000 261 212 or email
Register to vote online at
To be eligible to register to vote in England a person must be aged 16 or over (a person may register to vote at 16, but may not vote until they are 18).