Local elections - residents need photo ID to vote on 4 May

Polling station.
On 4 May 2023, the borough’s residents will have their say at the ballot box on who represents them on Rochdale Borough Council.

Published: 10 January 2023

On Thursday, 4 May 2023, residents go to the polls to have their say on who represents them on Rochdale Borough Council.

For the first time, voters will need to show photographic identification (ID) to vote at a polling station.

With this in mind, residents are being urged to make sure they are ready by checking they have an accepted form of ID. Accepted ID includes a UK, European Economic Area (EEA) or Commonwealth passport; a UK, EEA or Commonwealth drivers’ licence and some concessionary travel passes, such as an older person’s bus pass or an Oyster 60+ card. Voters will be able to use expired ID if they are still recognisable from the photo.

Anyone who doesn’t have photo ID can apply for free ID online from 16 January 2022.

The full list of accepted ID is available online along with details of how to apply for the free ID.

‘Will be ready to vote in May’

If you have a postal vote, you’ll be able to use it in the same way and additional ID won’t be required.

Council elections manager Clare Poole said: 

“It’s important those who want to vote make sure they have an accepted form of ID. It may seem early but checking now means you will be ready to vote in May. Residents who do not have one of the accepted forms of ID can apply for free ID either online or by completing a paper application form and sending this to our electoral services team. If you need any help with applying or want to request an application form, visit rochdale.gov.uk/elections or call us on 0300 303 0345.”

You need to be registered to vote in order to apply for free ID – the easiest way to register is online.

The requirement to show photo ID at the polling station was introduced by the UK Government’s Elections Act which was passed last year and comes into effect for the first time this May. 

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