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Durham Residents urged to be prepared to vote with ID


County Durham residents are being urged to make sure they are ready to vote in future elections, ahead of a new requirement to show photo ID at polling stations.


Although there are currently no scheduled elections taking place across the county this

year, Durham County Council is reminding residents to check they have an accepted form

of ID in advance.


The need to show photo ID at the polling station is a new requirement, introduced by the

UK Government’s Elections Act, which comes into effect in May.


Accepted forms of photo ID include passports, driving licences and concessionary travel

passes, such as an older person’s bus pass. Voters will also be able to use expired ID if

they are still recognisable from the photograph.


John Hewitt, Durham County Council’s returning officer, said: “With the possibility of an

election taking place at any time, it is important that 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, should an election be called.


“Residents who do not have one of the accepted forms of identification can apply for free

ID either online or by completing a paper application form and sending this to our electoral

services team.”


Residents can contact the team for support in applying for the free ID at 03000 261 212 or


A full list of accepted photo ID is available on the Electoral Commission’s website, along

with more information about the new requirement, at

www.electoralcommission.org.uk/voterID .


Anyone who does not have one of the accepted forms of photo identification can also

apply for free ID online at www.voter-authority-certificate.service.gov.uk/ or by completing

a paper form from Monday (16 January).


Anyone who wants to have their say in an election must also be registered to vote. It only

takes five minutes to register online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote . Anyone wishing to

apply to their council for free ID should first make sure they are registered to vote.

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