Register to vote

The electoral register and the open register

Using information received from the public, registration officers keep two registers – the electoral register and the open register (also known as the edited register).

The electoral register

The electoral register lists the names and addresses of everyone who is registered to vote in public elections. The register is used for electoral purposes, such as making sure only eligible people can vote. It is also used for other limited purposes specified in law, such as:

  • detecting crime (eg fraud)
  • calling people for jury service
  • checking credit applications

The open register

The open register is an extract of the electoral register, but is not used for elections. It can be bought by any company or organisation. For example, it is used by businesses and charities to confirm name and address details.

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.

Remove your name from the Open Register

Under the Data Protection Act 1998 you can request that your name and address is excluded from the Open Register on a permanent basis.

  • you cannot do this on behalf of another person
  • each individual must inform the Electoral Registration Officer separately that they want to do this

Removing your name from the Open Register does not remove you from the Full Electoral Register used for electoral and other statutory purposes.

You can write to or or email your request to the Electoral Registration Officer. Please include your name and home address.