This is a brief guide to researching historical electoral registers, which were introduced in 1832 and, with a few exceptions, have been produced annually ever since.
The National Archives does not hold any complete collections of electoral registers. The British Library holds a complete set from 1947 onwards, and older electoral registers are held mostly by local archives.
What do I need to know before I start?
Try to find out:
- the name of the person
- their address, including the street in which they lived
- the property through which they qualified to vote (not always the same as their address)
- a date range
What records can I see online?
Some electoral registers and poll books are available on commercial websites such as Ancestry £ and findmypast £ and it is likely that more will be added in the near future. To find out what is available look on family history websites or use a search engine such as Google.
What records can I find at The National Archives at Kew?
There are no complete collections of electoral registers at The National Archives.
What records can I find in other archives and organisations?
What other resources will help me find information?