Time is running out to register to vote, warns elections watchdog


With time running out to respond to the electoral canvass the Electoral Commission is urging people to register to vote in time to be included on the new electoral register. The new register will be published on 1 December.

The electoral canvass ensures that the electoral register for Northern Ireland is kept up to date. It is required by law and usually takes place every ten years.

Cahir Quote

Securing your place on the electoral register protects your democratic right to vote and ensures that you can have your say in elections. 
‘The canvass is an opportunity to confirm your details on the register are accurate. Everyone must respond, even if you were registered before. If you haven’t responded you should go online now and register to vote at gov.uk/register-to-vote. Registering online is easy and takes less than 5 minutes.

Cahir Hughes, Head of the Electoral Commission Northern Ireland, said:

Canvass response rates by constituency

Across Northern Ireland 85% of people have responded to the canvass. The constituencies with the lowest response rate are Foyle and Belfast South at 81%. The highest response rates are in South Antrim (87%), Strangford (87%) and Lagan Valley (88%).

Constituency  Response rate (%)
Foyle 81
Belfast South  81
Belfast North 83
Belfast West 83
East Londonderry/Derry  85
Belfast East 85
Mid Ulster 85
Upper Bann  85
Newry and Armagh  85
Fermanagh and South Tyrone  85
North Antrim 86
North Down 86
South Down 86
West Tyrone  86
East Antrim  87
South Antrim 87
Strangford  87
Lagan Valley     88


For more information contact the Electoral Commission press office on 028 9089 4029, out of office hours 07789 920 414 or press@electoralcommission.org.uk

Notes to editors

Notes to editors

The Electoral Commission is the independent body which oversees elections and regulates political finance in the UK. We work to promote public confidence in the democratic process and ensure its integrity by:

  • enabling the delivery of free and fair elections and referendums, focusing on the needs of electors and addressing the changing environment to ensure every vote remains secure and accessible
  • regulating political finance – taking proactive steps to increase transparency, ensure compliance and pursue breaches
  • using our expertise to make and advocate for changes to our democracy, aiming to improve fairness, transparency and efficiency

The Commission was set up in 2000 and reports to the UK, Scottish and Welsh parliaments.

Figures have been provided by the Electoral Office for Northern Ireland and are correct as of the 20 October 2021. Figures have been rounded to the nearest whole percentage point.