Register to vote

Who can vote?

To be able to vote in Basingstoke and Deane, you need to:

  • be 18 years of age, although you can register from 16
  • normally reside at an address in Basingstoke and Deane
  • be a British, Irish, Commonwealth or European Union (EU) citizen

EU citizens can vote at local elections and European Parliamentary Elections only. They cannot vote at UK Parliamentary Elections.

If you are a foreign national and wish to check whether you are eligible to register to vote, see the document of eligible nationalities.


Students may register at both their home address and their college or university address. It is not an offence to register twice, but it is an offence to vote more than once in the same election.

British citizens living abroad

British citizens living abroad can vote at UK and European Parliamentary Elections but not local government elections.

If you were registered to vote in the UK within the last 15 years, you can apply to be an overseas voter. It is important to note that you must apply to the last council with whom you were registered before moving abroad.

If you were too young to register when you left the UK, your parent or guardian must have been registered.

Find out more information and register to vote.

Service personnel and their spouse

Service personnel and their spouse have the choice of registering annually as an ordinary voter, or by way of a service declaration. Service declarations last for three years.

For more information and to register to vote visit GOV.UK website

Crown servants or British council employees

Crown servants or British council employees working outside the UK can still register to vote. The spouse of a crown servant or British council employee accompanying them during their employment abroad can also register under these arrangements

To do this you will have to complete an Crown Servant elector application online

Homeless people

Homeless people may register at the address or place where they spend a substantial part of their time either during the day or at night.

Remand prisoners

Remand prisoners may register at:

  • the institution where they are currently resident, or
  • the address they would have been resident or have previously lived.
Mental health patients

Mental health patients, either voluntary or detailed (but not those detained for criminal activity) may register at either:

  • the institution where they are currently resident, or
  • the address they would have been resident or have previously lived.

How do I register if I am not already registered?

  1. Go to the register to vote page on the GOV.UK website.
  2. Fill in your name, address, date of birth and a few other details. You'll also need your National Insurance (NI) number, which can be found on your NI card, or in official paperwork such as payslips, or letters about benefits or tax credits.
  3. Look out for a confirmation to say you're registered.

Why should I register?

You need to register in order to be able to vote. If you aren’t registered to vote, you won’t have the chance to have a say on who represents you.

Some people also register to vote because they want to apply for credit. This is because credit reference agencies use the register to check where someone lives when they apply for credit in order to prevent fraud.

Do I have to pay to register?

Registering to vote is free and you should not be charged for this. Please visit GOV.UK to submit your application for registration to vote.

Changing your name or address details

If you have changed your name but your address remains the same:

  • complete the enquiry form below, providing us details of your previous name and current address, and we will send you a change of details form
  • you will need to provide supporting evidence, such as:
    • marriage or civil partnership certificate
    • deed poll
    • amended birth certificate.

If you have changed your name and you have also moved address:

The Electoral Register and the Open Register

Every person applying to become registered is asked to choose whether to have their details excluded from the open register.

Any elector can contact us at any time to ask us to remove their details from the open register. You will need to specify your name and address and that you want your details excluded from it.

Exclusion from the open register will not affect your voting rights or credit status.

Electoral Register

The Electoral Register is used for:

  • electoral purposes, such as making sure only eligible people can vote
  • other limited purposes specified in law.

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

Who uses the electoral register?

Users of the electoral register include:

  • Election staff, political parties, candidates and holders of elected office use the register for electoral purposes.
  • Your local council and the British Library hold copies that anybody may look at under supervision. A copy is also held by:

    • the Electoral Commission
    • Boundary Commissions (which set constituency boundary for most elections)
    • and the Office for National Statistics.
  • The council can use the register for duties relating to security, enforcing the law and preventing crime. The police and the security services can also use it for law enforcement.
  • The electoral register is used when calling people for jury service.
  • Government departments may buy the register from local registration officers and use it to help prevent and detect crime. They can also use it to safeguard national security by checking the background of job applicants and employees.
  • Credit reference agencies can buy the register. They help other organisations to check the names and addresses of people applying for credit. They also use it to carry out identity checks when trying to prevent and detect money laundering.

It is a criminal offence for anybody to supply or use the register for anything else.

Open register

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 would not affect your right to vote.
Who uses the open register?

Users of the open register include:

  • businesses checking the identity and address of people who apply for their services. This includes insurance, goods hire and property rental, as well as when they shop online
  • businesses selling age-restricted goods or services, such as alcohol and gambling online, to meet the rules on verifying the age of their customers
  • charities and other voluntary agencies. To help maintain contact information for those who have chosen to donate bone marrow and to help people separated by adoption to find each other
  • charities, to help with fundraising and contacting people who have made donations
  • debt collection agencies when tracing people who have changed their address without telling their creditors
  • direct marketing firms when maintaining their mailing lists
  • landlords and letting agents when checking the identity of potential tenants
  • local councils when identifying and contacting residents
  • online directory firms to help users of the websites find people, such as when reuniting friends and families
  • organisations tracing and identifying beneficiaries of wills, pensions and insurance policies
  • private sector firms to verify details of job applicants.

In order to vote, your name must be on the electoral register. Not everybody is entitled to become or remain registered as this will depend on:

  • nationality
  • age
  • immigration status
  • and whether the person is resident at the address where he or she wants to be registered.

There is no automatic registration of electors from other records, such as council tax.

Electoral Register inspection

Public inspection of the register of electors

In accordance with the Representation of the People (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2002 your attention is drawn to the following:

  • This Register is open to public inspection and can be viewed at the Civic Offices, London Road, Basingstoke, RG21 4AH under supervision. It contains the names of all those registered to vote in the Borough of Basingstoke and Deane. You need to book appointment by calling 01256 844844.
  • If your details are incorrect or your name is not included in the register, please advise us immediately by telephoning 01256 845355.
  • Extracts from this register may only be recorded by making handwritten notes. Photocopying or electronic recording are not permitted by law.
  • Information taken from the register should not be used for commercial purposes, unless the information has been published in the edited version of the register which is also available for inspection.
  • Under the Regulations referred to above, anyone who fails to observe these conditions is committing a CRIMINAL offence. The penalty is a fine of up to level 5 (currently £5,000)

Contact details

Electoral Services team

If you have an enquiry about electoral services, send a message to the Electoral Services Team

Contact us

  • Contact us online
  • 01256 844844
  • Civic Offices
    London Road
    RG21 4AH
  • Opening hours
    Monday to Friday
    8.30am to 4.30pm