Electoral registers are lists of names of people entitled to vote, during the lifetime of the register, at an election in the polling districts in which they are listed and are the sole evidence of that right to vote. No-one can vote elsewhere than where they are registered and anyone omitted from the register cannot vote at all. Electoral Registers were first produced under the Representation of the People Act 1832. (2&3 Gul. 4) and continue to the present day with some variations in the amount of information they contain but always governed by Representation of the People legislation.
The registers are compiled by local authorities and are produced for units called 'Polling Districts' which are combined to form parliamentary constituencies. Registers are arranged by polling district (which varies over time) and are not searchable by name. Post 1974 registers include three registers per year covering Colwyn, Glyndwr and Wrexham Boroughs of Clwyd County Council. Post 1996 registers cover the area of 'New' Denbighshire and registers for the former Colwyn Borough area have been retained (1997-2000 only).
As a consequence of new regulations, two versions of the electoral register have been produced since 2003:
- The full version of the register contains the names of all voters and is used primarily to support the electoral process. Public access to it is strictly controlled and the data can only be used for research purposes.
- The open register, also known as the edited register, is available for sale for commercial use for direct marketing, advertising, etc. It omits the names of electors who have exercised their right to opt out to protect their privacy.
This collection consists of the full version registers only. Public access to it is strictly controlled and the data can only be used for research purposes. (See Access Conditions)
For earlier registers (1832-1973) see Quarter Sessions records.
For registers covering Rhuddlan Borough 1974-1995 contact Flintshire Record Office.
For registers covering South Denbighshire areas previously in the County of Merioneth contact Gwynedd Record Office.
For registers relating to other areas 1947 onwards contact the British Library (www.bl.uk).