Published: Thursday, 23rd February 2023
To help people meet the new requirements for presenting photo ID when voting at the local elections in May, the borough council is putting a range of measures in place, including drop-in sessions.
Most people won’t need to do anything because the list of acceptable forms of ID is long and even out-of-date ID will be accepted – they just need to remember to take their ID with them.
People who don’t have a photo ID at all can apply for a Voter Authority Certificate and the council can help with this.
The borough council’s chief executive, Lorraine Gore, explains:
“The easiest way to apply for a Voter Authority Certificate is online and the process is quite straightforward – as long as you have internet access and a camera, you can do it.
“We know that not everyone has internet access so we are also arranging drop-in sessions, where we can complete the whole process for you. All you need to do is make sure you bring your National Insurance number or other documents that can prove your identity.
“However, don’t worry if you can’t do either of these. You can apply for a certificate by post, or alternative option is to apply for a postal vote, which does not require a photo at all.
“We’re doing everything we can to make sure that people can take part in the democratic process and we’re here to help every step of the way.”
Acceptable forms of photo ID include*:
- UK-issued passport or driving licence
- Bus pass
- Blue badge
- PASS proof of age card
*As long as the photo still looks like you and your name on the ID is the same as your name on the electoral register, it doesn’t matter if the ID is out of date. For a full list of acceptable photo ID, please visit: https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/i-am-a/voter/voter-id/accepted-forms-photo-id.
To apply for a Voter Authority Certificate online, visit: https://www.gov.uk/apply-for-photo-id-voter-authority-certificate. Applicants need their National Insurance number or other documents (which must be scanned in or uploaded), such as utility bill, council tax statement, birth certificate, and a passport-style photograph. Full details provided on the gov.uk website.
The council has arranged drop-in sessions at its offices in King’s Court in Chapel St, King’s Lynn, as follows:
- every Tuesday, 2pm-5pm, and
- every Wednesday 9am-12noon
from Tuesday 28 February to 25 April (which is the closing date for VAC applications). Further sessions are being arranged in Hunstanton and Downham Market, full details of these will be released in the next fortnight.
The county’s libraries are also able to offer some help with the process, including free access to public computers and WIFI, at any time that the library is open. They can also give people one-to-one support to go through the process by appointment.
At libraries voters will need to take their National Insurance number and, importantly, their own device that can be used to take and upload a photograph, even if they are going to the library for support. If visiting a library for help voters should check local opening times and make an appointment if one-to-one help is needed.
If you do not have internet access, call 01553 616200 for a paper form to apply for a Voter Authority Certificate or to request a postal vote.