Voter ID: New requirement for voters to provide photographic identification at polling stations


  1. Overview
  2. Types of ID you can use
  3. Apply for a Voter Authority Certifcate
  4. If you don't want to show your identifcation
  5. More information


Before you can vote, you will need to show photographic identification (photo ID) at the polling station before you are given a ballot paper.

This is a new legal requirement introduced by the government.

This will affect all voters in South Tyneside who vote in person or by proxy. It does not apply to people who vote by post.

Types of ID you can use

You can use any of the following types of photo ID:

  • Passport
  • Driving licence (including provisional license)
  • 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

For more information on which forms of photo ID will be accepted, see The Electoral Commission: Voter ID.

Apply for a Voter Authority Certificate

You can apply for a free Voter Authority Certificate from Monday 16 January 2023, if:

  • you don't already have an accepted form of photo ID
  • you're not sure whether your photo ID still looks like you

How to apply

If you would like us to send a paper form to apply for a voter authority certificate, please call 0191 427 7000 or email

The deadline to apply for a certificate to use at the local government elections on 4 May 2023 is 5pm on Tuesday 25 April 2023.

An  Easy Read Guide - Voter Authority Certificate application form (PDF) [1MB]  is available to help voters with learning disabilities complete the Voter Authority Certificate application.

If you don't want to show your ID

If you don't have photographic identification or, don't want to show identification in the polling station, you may prefer to vote by post.

Find out more about how to vote by post.

More information

More information about the new requirements will be available at Community Area Forum meetings, where you can chat to members of the elections team for more information.

To see when your next Community Area Forum meeting is, see upcoming committee meetings.