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Elections and Registering to Vote

More information on:

Elections and Results

Registering for elections in East Devon

You are not automatically registered because you pay Council Tax

Register to Vote at 16 and 17

Last date for receipt of applications

Voting by Post or Proxy

Overseas Electors

Service Personnel

Crown Servants or British Council Employees

Foreign Language Forms

Parish Elector Totals

Ward & Boundary Changes

Registering for elections in East Devon

Your name must be on the register of electors in order for you to vote.

Between October and February, a canvass will be undertaken and registration forms will be sent to every household. By law, these must be returned with details of everyone living at the property who is eligible to register and who will be living at your address on 17 February 2014.

Electoral registration officers will also ask for 16 and 17 year olds to be included on the form as it is possible that they will become 18 years old during the life of the next register. If that is the case, their names will appear on the register showing the date on which they will become 18. If an election is called on or after that date, that person will be eligible to vote.

The electoral registration system in Great Britain is changing in 2014. The new system is called Individual Electoral Registration or IER and will be in place from 10 June 2014 in England and Wales.

For any other electoral enquiries please speak to an Electoral Registration Officer via our helpline on (01395) 517402.


Year Electorate (People registered to vote)
2011 104,953
2012 104,292
2013 104,489

Copies of the register are available for public inspection at the Council Offices, Knowle, Sidmouth and Town Hall, Exmouth.

The registration form and other application forms are available in large print, braille, audio tape and languages other than English.  Please contact the Helpline on (01395) 517402. Forms can also be accepted scanned or digitally signed by email and fax.

Full Register/Edited Register

The Electoral Services Officer keeps two versions of the electoral register. The full register lists everyone who is entitled to vote. It can only be used for electoral purposes, the prevention and detection of crime and checking your identity for credit purposes.

The edited register leaves out the names and addresses of people who have asked to be excluded from that version of the register. The edited register can be bought by anyone and they may use it for any purpose.

You are not automatically registered because you pay Council Tax

Please do not assume that you are registered to vote just because you pay Council Tax at your property.  For further assistance telephone 01395 517402 or email

Voting by post

You can now have a permanent postal vote; a postal vote for a specific period; or a postal vote for a particular election. This will allow you to vote from home. You can also ask for your ballot paper to be sent to a different address provided it is a definitive address (you do have to give a reason eg on holiday, working away, studying at university etc.) ie, a UK address with a post code is acceptable, a caravan on a holiday site is not definitive enough for Royal Mail to deliver; if you are on a cruise ship, it will not be delivered. If you are going abroad, it might be a better option to appoint a proxy (see below). The ballot papers are sent out about a week before an election.

You need to be aware that, if you are going away more than 6 working days before the date of an election, your postal vote is unlikely to arrive before you leave. Postal votes are sent out approximately 8 working days before Election Day.

To register for postal voting, please complete the PDF file Postal Vote form (68KB Portable Document Format - 27 November 2012 - PDF Help).

Voting by Proxy

If you cannot get to your polling station on the day of an election and do not want to vote by post, you can appoint someone you trust to vote for you (providing they agree), this must be done at least 6 days before an election. They will either have to go to your normal polling station to vote or if your proxy lives too far from your polling station to be able to vote in person, the proxy can apply for a postal proxy vote but you need to allow enough time to submit your application, for your proxy to apply for and then submit their application for a Proxy Postal Vote. All this must be done at least 11 days before an election. You must already be registered to vote and your Proxy must be eligible to vote. To apply for a proxy vote, please fill in the registration form. or  telephone 01395 517402.

You have to provide a reason why you want to vote by proxy i.e.on holiday, physical condition, employment, studying away etc. Your Proxy can only be a proxy for up to 2 people who are not members of your immediate family, you need to check this before appointing somebody.

The completed & scanned form can be sent by email to, by fax on 01395 517507, or delivered by hand to The Electoral Registration Officer, East Devon District Council, Knowle, Sidmouth, EX10 8HL.

Overseas Voters

If you are a British citizen living abroad, but you've been registered to vote in the UK within the last 15 years, you can apply to be an overseas voter. If you were too young to register when you left the UK, your parent or guardian must have been registered in the UK.

To register, fill in the registration form and return it to your electoral registration office in the UK.

Service Personnel

If you or your spouse is a member of the British Army, the Royal Navy or the Royal Air Force, you can still register to vote.

If you are based overseas or you live in the UK but may be posted abroad at short notice, you can apply to register as a service voter. This allows you to be registered at an address in Great Britain while you are posted abroad.

To register, fill in the registration form and return it to the address on this page.

Crown Servants or British Council Employees

If you are working outside the UK as a Crown Servant or as an employee of the British Council, you can still register to vote. You can also register if you are married to a Crown Servant or British Council employee and you are accompanying them during their employment abroad.

To register, fill in the registration form and return it to your electoral registration office in the UK..

Foreign Language Forms

For a foreign language registration form or application to vote by post, please go to

Parish Electoral Totals

Visitv PDF file the Parish Elector Totals (56KB Portable Document Format - 11 February 2011 - PDF Help) showing how many people are registered in each electoral area.

Ward & Boundary Changes

To view the Electoral Changes Order, go to

To look at the final periodic electoral review reports concerning East Devon visit the Local Government Boundary Commission website.

The Electoral Commission

The Electoral Commission is an independent body that was set up by parliament.  Its mission is to foster public confidence and participation by promoting integrity, involvement and effectiveness in the democratic process.

Page last updated on 9 January 2015