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Don’t lose your say as voting rules change

Published on 14 April 2023 09:38 AM

This May Bolton will be going to the polls for the local elections when, for the first time, people will need to show Photo ID to be allowed to have their vote and residents are being urged to make sure they don’t miss out on voting because of a lack of ID – anybody without will be turned away.

To vote at the next elections on 4th May, voters will need a form of photo ID such as a Driver's Licence (Including Provisional) or a Passport, some concessionary travel passes such as an older person's bus pass can be used. For a full list of valid photo ID click here.

Voters will be allowed to use a photo ID that has expired if the voter is still recognisable from the photograph.

The change to voting regulation has been brought in by the Government in a bid to stop ballot fraud after there were 6 cases in the 2021 General Election. The changes have been viewed as controversial after the Election Commission warned that young people, people from ethnic minority backgrounds and older people and women were the most likely to be turned away for not having the correct identification to be allowed to vote.

However, the government has brought in a free Voter ID scheme to allow those who have not got a photo ID to be able to vote without having to pay for another form of identification and the registration only takes 5 minutes. If you want to use this method of photo ID you must hurry. The deadline to get yours is the 25th April so time is running out.

To register for a free voter ID card click here

Voters can also fill out a paper form which can be printed from the government website. If you need a form printing for you call in to the Age UK Bolton main office 10am-1pm and we will happily print one off for you to fill in. (these are also available in “Easy Read” and “Large Print” format.

Voter ID will not be required for a postal vote, postal votes must be applied for by 18th April.

Anyone who wants to have their say in the elections this May must also be registered to vote before April 17.

It only takes five minutes to register online here

Voters wishing to apply for free voter ID should first make sure they are registered to vote by the 17th April.