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Register to vote

Each person over the age of 18 is responsible for their own voter registration. You can register simply and quickly online.

Before you start

To register, you will need to provide your:

  • National insurance number
  • Date of birth

Start now

If you are unable to vote on the day of an election, and providing you are registered correctly, you can apply for a postal or proxy vote.

If you are not sure if you are on the Electoral Register, we can check for you.

Completed postal and proxy vote application forms can be scanned and returned by email to, or sent by post to:

Electoral Services
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
Town Hall
Mount Pleasant Road
Tunbridge Wells
Kent TN1 1RS

Postal vote

If you are currently on the Electoral Register and wish to apply for a postal vote, please contact the Electoral Services team.

You can only apply for postal voting if you are already on the Electoral Register.

Postal votes can be sent overseas, but you need to consider whether there will be enough time to receive and return your ballot paper by election day.

If you're not on the Electoral Register, you can register to vote now or if you are not sure if you are on the Electoral Register, we can check for you.

For more information on how to vote by post, go to the voting by post page on the Electoral Commission website.

Proxy vote

A proxy vote is where you nominate a person to vote on your behalf.

If you are currently on the Electoral Register and wish to apply for a proxy vote, please contact the Electoral Services team.

You can only apply for proxy voting if you are already correctly registered on the Electoral Register.

If you're not on the Electoral Register, you can register to vote now or if you are not sure if you are on the Electoral Register, we can check for you.

For more information on how to vote by proxy, go to the proxy voting page on the Electoral Commission website.

Electoral Registration FAQs

The Electoral Register is a list of the names and addresses of everyone who is registered to vote.

You need to be on the Electoral Register to vote in all UK elections and referendums.

The Electoral Register is also used by credit agencies to carry out credit reference checks, and as such your credit rating may be affected if you have not applied to be on the Register.

The information is required by law.

If you are not registered, you cannot vote in elections.

You may find it difficult to get credit, loans, a mortgage or bank account as the register is used by credit reference agencies.

You can register to vote if you are:

  • 16 or over (but you cannot vote until you are 18)
  • a UK, Republic of Ireland or qualifying Commonwealth citizen
  • a citizen of a European Union country living in the UK
  • a citizen of the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or a British Overseas Territory living in the UK

Students are entitled to register at both their home address and their university address, but can only vote once in an election.

Your name and address will appear on the full electoral register.

The full register is used for electoral purposes and can be only be shared for a legally defined purpose such as:

  • criminal investigations (such as fraud)
  • jury service, as a directory to call people for this service
  • credit applications

Anyone who has been accepted onto the register will appear on the full register. Anonymous electors will be recorded with a blank entry.

You can then choose on your registration form whether to appear on the open register.

The open register is available to be used for commercial activities such as marketing.

The open register is an extract of the Electoral Register, but is not used for elections.

It can be bought by any person, company or organisation. For example, it is used by businesses and charities to confirm name and address details.

The personal data in the register must always be processed in line with data-protection legislation.

Your name and address will be included in the open register unless you ask for them to be removed.

Removing your details from the open register does not affect your right to vote.

If you are already registered to vote, you can choose to add or remove your details from the Open Register by contacting the Electoral Services team.

We can tell you - please complete our online form and we will contact you to let you know whether you are registered or not.

You may be able to register anonymously if you can show that there’s a good reason, for example if you’re concerned about your safety.

To establish that you are at risk we would require you  to supply court documents or what is called an attestation, a statement describing your situation from:

  • a senior police officer
  • director of social services

Your details won’t appear on either version of the electoral register if you register anonymously.

Please contact us for more information about registering to vote anonymously.

For more information on registering anonymously, go to the anonymous voting page on the Electoral Commission website.

The Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013 changed the responsibility of registering to vote within the UK. Before the Act the “head of household” would confirm and register who could vote within their household.

Since the Act people are now responsible for their own registration. This new system allows people to register online as well as by post. It has never been easier to register and an online application takes no more than five minutes to complete.

To improve the accuracy and security of the register you must now supply your date of birth and national insurance number when registering to vote.

No, you only need to register again if you change address.

Each household is sent a Household Enquiry Form (HEF) annually which must be completed and returned, or you could be removed from the Electoral Register.

Only students can be registered at both a term time and non-term time address.

If you have two homes you should register at the home which you would consider your main address. You should not make an application to register at both.

If you are unsure which address you would consider your main residence you should contact us to discuss your situation

You will need to register at your new address, the quickest and easiest way to update your details is online.

If you have problems registering online or you do not want to register online please contact the local authority for the area you have moved too, to request a paper form.

Members of HM Forces will need to register as a service voter, you can do this online

As part of the application, a service application must be completed and is valid for five years.

For further advice please contact the Unit Registration Officer within your unit of the armed forces.

For more information on Members of HM forces, go to the armed forces page of the Electoral Commission website.

We will only use your contact details for registration purposes and will not share these with other parties.

These details are compared against a central government database to confirm the identity of an applicant.

This is a requirement of Individual Electoral Registration and ensures that the register will be accurate and not open to abuse.

We can only use this information for the purposes of registration.

You need to re-register ensuring that you state your previous name on the application. The easiest way to do this is online.

Should you not be able to complete the online application please contact us to request a paper application.

We're required by law to publish how many signatures of registered voters are required on a petition, which would require us to hold a referendum on changing our model of governance.

This figure is known as the verification number.