Photo ID needed to vote in elections on May 4

Voting checklist

Anyone wanting to vote in person at the local elections to be held on May 4, to elect District and parish or town councillors, will need to take with them a form of photo identification.

This is a change being introduced by the UK Government for all of England and will apply across all of Lincolnshire’s local district and parish elections.

It will also apply to all future elections, including any general election held after October this year.

It is similar to what happened within North Kesteven in 2019 when the District Council was carrying out a trial of Voter ID on behalf of the Cabinet Office. In 2019 people could choose from a range of photo or non-photo IDs, but this time there is a prescribed list of photo-based ID types such as photo driving licence, passport, bus pass or blue badge.

A full list of which forms of ID will be acceptable can be found at and expired ID can still be used, so long as the photo remains recognisable and the name is unchanged.

For those people who don’t have any of the prescribed ID types, there is provision to have a photo-based Voter Authority Certificate made up at no cost.

Postal voting is not affected by this change as verification for that is done by signature and date of birth.

Residents are being urged to make sure they are ready to vote in May by checking they have an accepted form of ID now, and to apply early for the free voter ID, known as a Voter Authority Certificate, if necessary.

Ian Fytche, Chief Executive and Returning Officer at North Kesteven District Council, said it was critical for all voters intending to vote in person to understand the need to have a form of photo ID with them when they attend a polling station on May 4.

“This is a new national requirement and in association with the work of the Electoral Commission, we will be doing everything we can to raise awareness of the need for Voter ID at these and all future elections.

“Having supported the trial in 2019, I have no doubt that the vast majority of North Kesteven electors are familiar with what is required of them. In 2019 there were almost 30 types of ID to chose from and with 92% of people opting to use their driving licence, passport or bus pass, it is clear that most people already have the photo IDs they need to engage in these elections on May 4.

“I would however encourage everyone to check and, if they need to, to make an application for either the free Voter Authority Certificate or to consider registering for a postal ballot to ensure their ability to participate fully. It may seem early, but by checking now you will be ready to vote in May.”

Acceptable forms of photo ID

  • Passport
  • Photo driving licence, including provisional licence
  • Blue badge
  • Certain concessionary travel cards
  • Identity card with PASS mark (Proof of Age Standards Scheme)
  • Biometric Immigration Document
  • Defence identity card
  • Certain national identity cards

Expired ID can still be used, so long as you are recognisable within the photo and your name remains the same.

The full list of which forms of photo ID will be accepted, is at: or call their helpline on 0800 328 0280.


If you don’t already have one of these accepted forms of photo ID, or you’re not sure whether your photo ID still looks like you, you can apply for a free voter ID document. You can do this from January 16 at

Alternatively, you can complete a paper application form and send it to the electoral services team at North Kesteven District Council. Call on 01529 414155 to request a form or for help in applying.


Anyone who wants to have their say in the elections this May must also be registered to vote. It only takes five minutes to register online at Voters wishing to apply to their council for free ID should first make sure they are registered to vote. 

For the latest news on North Kesteven District Council visit our council news pages

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