Marking a vote

Voter ID

In December 2022 Parliament passed The Elections Act. It requires all voters to show photo ID to vote in person in: 

  • local and general elections (including councils, mayors, and Police & Crime Commissioner)
  • recall of MP petitions and by-elections
  • referendums including neighbourhood planning, Business Improvement District referendums, and Council Tax increases

Information about voter registration deadlines and the date of the next election can be found on the Gateshead Council website.

A full list of acceptable IDs can be found below. Some common ones include:

  • Photocard driving licence
  • Tyne & Wear concessionary travel pass
  • UK, EU, or Commonwealth passport
  • Biometric residence permit (BRP)
  • Blue Badge
  • PASS card (National Proof of Age Scheme)

You can use an expired ID as long as the picture still looks like you.

Student or young person’s travel cards and University ID cards are not accepted.

What if I don’t have an ID?

You can apply for a free Voter Authority Certificate online if:

  • you do not have an acceptable form of photo ID
  • you no longer look like the photo on your ID
  • the name on your photo ID is different to your name on the electoral register

To apply, you will need to provide:

  • your registered voting address
  • a recent, digital photo
  • your National Insurance number

If you don't have a National Insurance number you’ll need to prove your identity with another document, such as a birth certificate or a bank statement and utility bill.

You can apply by post, but you will need to download and print the forms and supply a passport style photo. Contact the Gateshead Electoral Registration Office if you need help at 0191 433 2166 or by email at

What kind of photo ID can I use?

This is the full list of acceptable ID. It can also be found on the GOV.UK website.

  • a UK or Northern Ireland photocard driving licence (full or provisional)
  • a driving licence issued by the EU, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, the Isle of Man, or any of the Channel Islands
  • a UK passport or one issued by the EU, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein or a Commonwealth country
  • a PASS card (National Proof of Age Standards Scheme)
  • a Blue Badge
  • a biometric residence permit (BRP)
  • a Defence Identity Card (MOD form 90)
  • a national identity card issued by the EU, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein
  • a Northern Ireland Electoral Identity Card
  • a Voter Authority Certificate
  • an Anonymous Elector’s Document

You can also use one of the following travel passes as photo ID when you vote:

  • an older person’s bus pass
  • a disabled person’s bus pass
  • an Oyster 60+ card
  • a Freedom Pass
  • a Scottish National Entitlement Card (NEC)
  • a 60 and Over Welsh Concessionary Travel Card
  • a Disabled Person’s Welsh Concessionary Travel Card
  • a Northern Ireland concessionary travel pass

You can use an expired ID as long as the photo still looks like you.

If you are voting on somone else's behalf as a proxy, you will need to take your own ID. You do not need theirs.

The name on your ID must match your name on the electoral register. Small differences do not matter; for example, if your ID says ‘Jim Smith’ instead of ‘James Smith’.

If it does not, you’ll need to either:

  • register to vote again with your new details
  • take a document with you to vote that proves you’ve changed your name (for example, a marriage certificate)

How do I apply for a Postal Vote?

To apply for a postal vote you must print the form and return it to the Electoral Services office. You can find the form here.

You must complete and return your ballot paper and security statement by election day, or your vote will not be counted. If you forget to post your ballot paper you can take it to your local polling station on the day of the election.

Due to new rules, councillors or other campaigners are no longer able to post your ballot for you.

Check that you have the right kind of ID now, and don't lose your right to vote!

This website uses cookies

Like most websites, this site uses cookies. Some are required to make it work, while others are used for statistical or marketing purposes. If you choose not to allow cookies some features may not be available, such as content from other websites. Please read our Cookie Policy for more information.

Essential cookies enable basic functions and are necessary for the website to function properly.
Statistics cookies collect information anonymously. This information helps us to understand how our visitors use our website.
Marketing cookies are used by third parties or publishers to display personalized advertisements. They do this by tracking visitors across websites.