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Electoral register and the 'open register'

There are 2 versions of the electoral register - the full version and the ‘open register’. 

You can find out more information about both registers and how they may be used at gov.uk/electoral-register.

Electoral register

Everyone’s name and address goes on the full version of the electoral register. The full version of the register is only used for:

  • elections
  • preventing and detecting crime
  • checking applications for loans or credit
  • jury summoning 
  • campaigning activities, for example:
    • candidates and political parties sending election communications to voters
    • surveying opinions 
    • fundraising.

Open Register

The open register is an extract of the electoral register, but is not used for elections. It can be bought by any person, 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. You can remove your details by:

If you are concerned that having your name or address on the register may affect your safety, there could be other options available to you. In certain circumstances, you can register without your name and address showing on the register. To find out more, you can contact us by:

How to see the electoral register

You can view the Register of Electors at:

  • Town Hall, Bournemouth, BH2 6DY
  • Civic Offices, Bridge Street, Christchurch, BH23 1AZ
  • Civic Centre, Poole, BH15 2RU.

A supervisor must be present and you can’t take a copy.

Rolling Registration and the Annual Canvass

You can register to vote at any time during the year, however there are deadlines for each monthly update.  If you’re not sure whether you are on the register, or if your information needs updating, you can contact us by:

The electoral registration officer has to carry out an annual canvass. This means the ‘rolling’ system is suspended from September to November. 

The annual canvass helps us to make sure that anyone who moved during the year, and didn’t apply to be on the register, is not missed off when the revised register is published, by December 1st.