Voter photo ID required to vote at elections

We’re letting residents know today that they will need photo ID to vote at the next local elections on Thursday 4 May. 

The government’s Elections Act 2022 has introduced a requirement for voters to show photo ID when voting at a polling station. This will apply for the first time in Brighton & Hove at the local elections on Thursday 4 May 2023. 

You must bring photo ID to be able to vote. If you don’t have a form of photo ID, you can apply for a free Voter Authority Certificate (VAC). 

The government's ruling means these are the forms of ID you can use to vote: 

  • UK passport 
  • A passport issued by an EEA (European Economic Area) state or a Commonwealth country 
  • EEA identity card 
  • Driving license (including provisional licence) 
  • A biometric immigration document 
  • Older person’s bus pass 
  • Disabled person’s bus pass 
  • A blue badge 
  • A PASS identity card 

If you have one of the above which is out of date, you can use this at the polling station if it still looks like you. 

If you don’t already have a form of photo ID, or you are not sure whether your photo still looks like you, you can apply for a free Voter Authority Certificate (VAC). 

How to apply for a VAC 

The deadline to apply for a VAC for use at the local elections is 5pm on Tuesday 25 April, but you should apply sooner in case we need to check any details with you. 

You can apply via the Voter Authority Certificate on or contact us at to be sent a paper copy.  

My name on the register does not match my ID 

When you attend the polling station a member of staff will: 

  1. Ask your name and address to find you on the electoral register 

  1. Ask for your photo ID and check it is acceptable 

  1. If your photo ID is accepted, you will be given a ballot paper and be directed to a polling booth 

A private area will be available if you want your photo ID viewed in private.  

Staff at the polling station are there to help. If you need assistance, just ask. 

Other ways to vote 

If you vote by post, you don’t need to provide ID. 

To apply to vote by post, complete and return an application by 5pm on Tuesday 18 April. 

You can download a form from our voting and election webpages or email us at for a paper copy. 

Completed forms can be returned by email or post. 

Concerns raised about the new voter ID system 

Council Leader Phélim Mac Cafferty has written to Cabinet Office Minister, the Rt Hon, Jeremy Quin MP, to express his concerns about the new voter ID system. 

In the letter Councillor Mac Cafferty writes: “Both the principle and the delivery of these plans will lead to voters being turned away from polling stations and could lead to long term disenchantment with the voting system, particularly within already marginalised groups. 

“The government simply must halt this requirement for the upcoming council elections. 

“The Electoral Commission reports that the UK has low levels of proven electoral fraud. In 2019, 4 people were convicted of voter fraud, when over 32 million people cast their vote.  

“There remains no evidence of large-scale electoral fraud in any recent UK election.” 

Further information 

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at