Register to vote

Registering is easy and only takes a couple of minutes. To register or check you are already registered visit

Make sure that you are not turned away at the ballot box at an election. While you should only need to register to vote once, if you have moved or gone away to university, you will need to re-register.

Individuals are not automatically registered to vote when they turn eighteen, but 16 and 17-year-olds can put themselves on the register so that they will be ready to vote as soon as they turn 18.

If you plan to vote in person, you will need to make sure that the address you will be at on 3 May is the one you are registered for.

Voting by post

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

Apply for a postal vote

You can apply to vote by post:

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

Completing and returning your postal vote

When voting by post, you should:

  • mark your vote on your ballot paper in secret
  • fill in the postal voting statement
  • put the ballot and statement in the envelope provided
  • seal the envelope yourself

Post your ballot back as quickly as possible to make sure it’s counted.

If you’re too late to post your ballot paper

Take it to your local polling station by 10pm, or Electoral Registration Office before they close.

Change where your postal vote is sent

Make a new application for a postal vote if you move house or you’ll be away from home when the postal vote is sent out.

Voting by proxy

Voting by proxy means getting someone to vote on your behalf.

You can apply to vote by proxy:

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

You can only apply for a proxy vote under certain circumstances, including:

  • being away on polling day
  • having a medical issue or disability
  • not being able to vote in person because of work or military service

You need to give the reason why you’re applying for a proxy vote.

In most cases, you need someone to sign your application form to confirm your reasons for wanting a proxy vote. The application form will tell you who needs to sign it.

Change or cancel your proxy vote

To change who acts as your proxy or to start voting in person, contact your local Electoral Registration Office.

If you want to vote by post instead, complete a postal vote application.

(information source:

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