Annual Household Canvass
What is the annual canvass?
Every year, we are required by law to conduct an annual canvass to make sure the electoral register is up to date. The purpose of the canvass is to identify everyone who should be on the electoral register and delete any entries that are now incorrect, ie where someone has moved from a property.
How does the annual canvass work?
- Before the start of the canvass, normally around July, data from the electoral register is sent to Central Government to securely match against their Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) records.
- The results of this data matching exercise indicates whether the electors living in each property are likely to have changed or not.
- If the records show that the details for a property are unlikely to have changed, the property will follow the Route 1 canvass process for matched properties.
- If there are people at a property that cannot be matched or the data matching process indicates that there may be a change to the information for a property, the property will follow the Route 2 canvass process.
- Care homes and nursing homes will follow the Route 3 canvass process. This involves contact being made with the manager or other responsible person of the establishment to gain the information for that property.
Communication - what will you receive?
Depending on the result of the data matching for each property households will receive at least one of the following communications during July-October:
Route 1 properties:
Canvass Communication A (CCA) - Please check the details carefully and respond if there are any changes to report
Canvass Communication A (CCA) confirmation letters addressed to 'The Occupier' will be hand delivered by canvassers (official representatives of the Council) between July and August. You will be asked to check the names of people registered at the address. If all the information is correct, no response is required. If any of the details need to be changed or names need to be added or removed, households can respond online by using the security codes printed on the letter to log in and register the changes. Anyone unable to report any changes using the online method can email email@example.com or call 01522 873733.
Route 2 properties:
Canvass Form (CF)
Canvass Forms (CF) addressed to 'The Occupier' will be hand delivered by canvassers (official representatives of the Council) between July and August. This form lists the names of the people who are currently registered at the address. A blank form will be sent if the property has no current registered electors. A reply envelope will be enclosed. A response is required to this form, even if there are no changes to report. Responses to this form can be made by any of the following methods:
- Respond online. You will need the security numbers which are printed on the front page of the form. You can make changes to the details for your household using this service; or
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 01522 873733 to report any changes if you are unable to complete online; or
- By post, please use the pre-paid return envelope provided.
- If nothing has changed and the details printed on the form are correct, you can also phone 0808 284 1563 or text NO CHANGE to 07786 209 373 to confirm there are no changes. You will need the security numbers printed on the front page of the form to confirm by phone or text.
Household visits to non-responding properties
For Route 2 properties, if we do not receive a response to the Canvass Form which would be hand delivered to the property, we are required to contact you either by telephone or to make a visit to your property to confirm the details. Visits will take place in September and could take place in the evenings and weekends, as well as during weekdays. All canvassers (official representatives of the Council) will carry photographic ID and will be happy to show it to you.
To avoid a visit or a telephone call, please respond to your Canvass Form immediately. Your form will show you all the different ways you can respond, but the easiest way to is to respond online. You will need the security numbers printed on the front of the form to complete. Other response methods are shown on the form.
Canvass Communication B (CCB) form
Canvass Communication B (CCB) forms addressed to 'The Occupier' will be sent by post in October to any properties which have not responded to their Canvass Form by the deadline or engaged with the house visit. This form lists the names of the people who are currently registered at the address. A blank form will be sent if the property has no current registered electors. A response is required to this form even if there are no changes to report. Responses to this form can be made by any of the methods listed above.
A response is required to this form, even if there are no changes to report.
Service and anonymous voters
Please note that service voter details and any anonymous registrations will not appear on annual canvass communications. However, this does not necessarily mean you are not registered. Please contact email@example.com or call 01522 873733 to check before making any response to your canvass communication, to avoid unnecessary duplicate registrations or any delay in responding which would result in a visit to your property.
What happens next?
If you tell us that there are new people eligible to be registered, they will each need to register individually. They can go online to register. If they do not apply online we will send an "invitation to register" to each person you have added (these will be sent either by email or post). Each person is required to provide their National Insurance number and date of birth when they apply to be registered.
If you tell us someone has moved away, we may need to send a further letter to each individual so that we have confirmation that they have moved. This is because we require two pieces of evidence to remove someone from the electoral register.
If you tell us that someone has changed their name, we will send them a further letter to request a copy of their marriage or deed poll certificate to enable their name to be changed on the register or they can make an application online to update their details.
Do I need to re-register each year?
Once you are registered you do not need to register again unless you change your address or name. However, you will receive a Canvass Communication each year, even if you are already registered. This ensures the register is kept up to date.