There’s an election with a difference in 2023
On Thursday 4 May residents will go to the polls to have their say on whom they want to represent them in Peterborough, one of 230 areas where elections are taking place.
In our city, 21 city councillors will be elected across the city; there are 21 seats as opposed to the usual 20 because of resignations.
But this year there is a change in arrangements – and it’s important that people are aware of it as they go to the booths. The government is introducing a change to the voting process, to make it as secure as possible for residents.
That means that electors will need to show photographic identification to receive a ballot paper to cast a vote in a polling station.
The acceptable forms of ID include: passport; driving licence; Blue Badge, and certain concessionary travel cards.
Details of all forms of acceptable ID are available to view on the council’s website at www.peterborough.gov.uk
All registered polling station voters who are eligible to vote in the local elections will receive a new-look poll card addressed to the individual person at the end of March/early April.
An estimated two million people (4% of all voters) currently lack the accepted forms of identification across the country.
But if you don’t already have an acceptable form of photographic ID, you can apply for a Voter Authority Certificate (VAC) – a free photographic identification document used and issued for the specific purpose to allow an elector to vote in the polling station.
You’ll need to provide your name, address, date of birth and National Insurance number, as well as a photograph.
For more information visit www.peterborough.gov.uk or you can email or call 01733 452249.
Alternatively, visit electoralcommission.org.uk, where you can also find resources for people with disabilities; people experiencing homelessness; Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities; older people; trans and non- binary people; and those registered to vote anonymously.
Other key dates
- To vote in the elections you must be registered by 17 April at https://www.gov.uk/register-to-vote.
- To apply to vote by post you’ll need to complete a postal vote application form, and make sure it arrives with your council by 5pm on 18 April. You will then receive your ballot paper in the post; complete this and return it, ensuring it arrives with the council by 10pm on Thursday, 4 May. If you can’t post it in time, you can take it to the polling station or council on polling day.
- Residents who would like to vote by post will not require photo ID.
- To apply to vote by proxy, complete an application form and send it to your local council to arrive by 5pm on 25 April. The person you choose to vote on your behalf will need to go to your polling station to vote and show their ID, but they will not need to show yours.