Toggle menu

Voter ID

The UK government has introduced a requirement for voters to show photographic identification to vote at polling stations.

This applies to:

  • Local elections and by-elections
  • UK General elections
  • Police and Crime Commissioner elections
  • Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority Mayoral elections
  • UK Parliamentary by-elections
  • Recall petitions

If you don't have accepted photo ID, you can apply for a free voter ID document, which is known as a Voter Authority Certificate.

Find out more about accepted forms of photo ID, how to apply for a free Voter Authority Certificate, and what to expect on polling day.

Acceptable forms of photo ID

  • Passport issued by the UK, any of the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man, a British Overseas Territory, an EEA state or a Commonwealth country
  • Driving licence issued by the UK, any of the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or an EEA state
  • Biometric immigration document
  • Identity card bearing the Proof of Age Standards Scheme hologram (a PASS card)
  • Ministry of Defence Form 90 (Defence Identity Card)
  • Blue badge
  • National identity card issued by an EEA state
  • Older Person's Bus Pass
  • Disabled Person's Bus Pass
  • Oyster 60+ Card
  • Freedom Pass
  • Scottish National Entitlement Card issued in Scotland
  • 60 and Over Welsh Concessionary Travel Card issued in Wales
  • Disabled Person's Welsh Concessionary Travel Card issued in Wales
  • Senior SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland
  • Registered Blind SmartPass or Blind Person's SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland
  • War Disablement SmartPass or War Disabled SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland
  • 60+ SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland
  • Half Fare SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland
  • Electoral Identity Card issued in Northern Ireland
  • Voter Authority Certificate or a temporary Voter Authority Certificate

Out of date photo ID

Expired photographic ID documents can be still be used as accepted photographic ID at the polling station, as long as the photograph still looks like you. The name on your ID should be the same name you used to register to vote.

Don't have ID? Apply for free voter ID now

You can apply for a free voter ID document, known as a Voter Authority Certificate, if:

  • you don't have an accepted form of photo ID
  • you're not sure whether your photo ID still looks like you
  • you're worried about using an existing form of ID for any other reason, such as the use of a gender marker

You need to register to vote before applying for a Voter Authority Certificate.

If you need any help with applying for a Voter Authority Certificate or want to request a paper application form, please contact our electoral team on or 01354 654321.

If you've changed your name

The name on your photo ID must match your name on the electoral register. If it does not, you'll need to:

  • register to vote again with your new details
  • bring your photo ID and a supporting document to provide evidence of the change of name such as:
  1. marriage or civil partnership certificate
  2. deed poll
  3. decree absolute
  4. amended birth certificate
  5. overseas marriage or civil partnership certificate

What will happen at the Polling Station?

When you arrive at the polling station, a member of staff will:

  1. Ask you for your name and address so they can find you on the electoral register
  2. Ask for your photo ID and check that if it is acceptable
  3. If your ID is acceptable, they will give you your ballot paper and direct you to complete it in a polling booth as ususal.

A private area will be available at the polling station, so you can choose to have your photo ID viewed in private if you like.  This might be a separate room, or an area separated by a privacy screen, depending on the polling station.

Showing ID as an anonymous elector

If you're registered to vote anonymously and want to vote in person, you'll need to apply for an Anonymous Elector Document.

Find out more about registering to vote anonymously and how to vote anonymously

Voting by proxy

You'll need to take your own ID when you go to vote on someone else's behalf. You do not need to take theirs.

Voting by post

Postal voters will not be affected and will be issued with their postal ballot papers as usual.

Voter ID FAQs

Find answers to some frequently asked questions about the new Voter ID requirement and what you need to do if you wish to vote in person at a polling station.

Voter ID Guides

The Electoral Commission has prepared a number of Voter ID Guides, which include everything you need to know about photo ID for the May 2023 English local elections.

Share this page

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share by email