Get Ready to Vote

Posted by: Kaye Russell on 03 April 2023 13:27

Residents of South Tyneside are reminded to make sure they are ready to vote ahead of the Local Government Elections in May.

On Thursday 4 May, residents will go to the polls to have their say on who represents them on South Tyneside Council.

To vote in the local elections, residents must be on the Electoral Register. Those who have not registered to vote at their current address need to make sure they are registered by the Monday 17 April deadline. Anyone can apply online at

Those intending to vote at polling stations also need to show photo ID - a new requirement introduced as part of the UK Government's Elections Act passed last year.

Current research suggests that around four per cent of people may not have any form of photo ID or their photo ID may not be acceptable. This means that this May, approximately 3,200 polling station voters in South Tyneside are at risk of losing their ability to vote.

Those that do not have eligible ID can apply for free voter ID at or by completing a paper form.

Jonathan Tew, South Tyneside's Returning Officer, said: "Elections are an important opportunity for people to have their say on who makes decisions about issues that directly affect their day-to-day lives here in South Tyneside.

"For those who have recently turned 18 or moved house, it is particularly important to make sure they are correctly registered to vote.

"Residents who do not have one of the accepted forms of ID can apply for free ID either online or by completing a paper application form and sending this to the Council's elections team.

"The alternative to voting in person at a polling station is to vote by post. Residents do not need photo ID to do this. It's really easy to apply for a postal vote and there is a wealth of information on the Council's website at on how to do this."

The Council is encouraging anyone who does not want to show ID in a polling station to apply for a postal vote before the deadline of 5pm on Tuesday 18 April.

More information about applying for a postal vote is available at

Residents can also request an application form by calling (0191) 427 7000 or emailing South Tyneside's Elections Team at

Ailsa Irvine, Director of Electoral Administration and Guidance at the Electoral Commission, said: "If you're not registered by 17 April, you will not be able to vote this May. Registering to vote only takes five minutes and can be done online.

"This year voters should also remember that they will need to bring photo ID to the polling station to be able to vote. Anyone that does not have an accepted form of ID can apply for free voter ID by 25 April."

The full list of accepted ID is available on the Electoral Commission's website along with more information about the new requirement and details of how to apply for the free ID, at

Anyone who needs help with applying for the free ID or wants to request an application form, can contact the election's team on (0191) 427 7000.

Voters wishing to apply for free ID should make sure they are registered to vote first

Notes to editors

  • People can choose to vote in person, by post or by appointing someone they trust to vote in their place, known as a proxy vote. The deadline to apply for a postal vote is 5pm on 18 April, and for a proxy vote the deadline is 5pm on 25 April.
  • The requirement to show photo ID at the polling station, is a new requirement, introduced by the UK Government's Elections Act which was passed last year.
  • To apply for the free ID, known as a Voter Authority Certificate, voters will need to provide a photo, full name, date of birth, the address at which they are registered to vote and their National Insurance number.


Last modified: 09 April 2024 13:35