Annual Canvass

The annual canvass takes place from July to December. This is when we send communications to every home in Rutland and ask occupants to check the information held on the electoral register for that address.

The information households provide then allows us to identify anyone not currently registered to vote, so that we can invite them to register. This is something we are legally required to do.

The Annual Canvass of Electors is an important chance for people to make sure they’re able to vote in future elections.

Responding to Canvass

One of the most significant elements of Canvass is that prior to sending out any emails/communications to households we conduct a data match with the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP).  This data match step involves checking the information about existing electors on our register, against data held by the DWP.  Dependent of how well our data matches will govern how we approach each property.  The dates given below are indicative and will be updated once we enter the annual canvass period.

If all of the data matches then we will email (if an email address has been provided)  all of the electors in a property asking them to check the data and confirm that it is correct.  Please note that these emails are sent from our secure email address: is conducted electronically, using security codes provided in the email and a current postcode.  Emails will normally be sent in early July.  Please note that only one elector needs to respond.  Where we do not hold an email address for an elector, or we do not receive a response to an email for a given property (please note this includes those properties where electors responded after the deadline) we are required to send a paper form known as a Canvass Communication A, which will list the names of those registered to vote at the address.  Providing, the information is correct there is no need to respond.  If there are changes required, instructions will be given on the form on how to respond.  These forms are normally sent out in early August.

 If for any reason there is not a complete data match, we are required to send different communications (which will start with a Canvass Communication B) which does require a response by law (this will be stated on the form).  These forms will normally be sent out in mid-July .  We are required by law, in the first instance, to send a communication to the property directly and are not allowed to email matched electors at this stage.  Again, the form will explain the response channels, the easiest of which will be online using the unique security codes on the form.  Please note there is no pre-paid envelope enclosed and response channels will be:  online for any response or by telephone/SMS for no changes only.


If no response is received to the first Canvass Communication B, we are required by law to contact the property again, and this time we are allowed to email matched electors, but if there is no response to an email contact we are required to send a further written communication in the form a Canvass Form (similar to the old Household Enquiry Form) and also try to make a personal contact with an elector from the property – this could be by telephone or by a personal house visit.  This can be prevented by an occupant answering the initial communication as soon as possible.


If someone in your household is not currently registered to vote their name will not appear on the canvass communication form and you must add them in your canvass response.  They will then be sent an invitation to register but they can also do this themselves to prevent a paper form being sent by going online at the national GOV.UK website.


If you've recently moved address it's particularly important to keep an eye out for the form and check your details. 

Anyone with questions about Rutland’s annual canvass can contact our Elections Team by emailing: or calling 01572 722 577.

Registering to Vote  

Please note that registering to vote is a separate process.  If you have already registered to vote you will still need to complete your Household Enquiry Form. 

If you wish to register to vote you can do so online on the Register to Vote website.    

Personal Canvassers 

If you do not responded to any of our canvass communications the Electoral Registration Officer has a statutory duty to arrange for a personal canvasser to contact you by telephone or visit your home to ensure that you have been given every opportunity to complete the canvass.  

Please note, there is a legal requirement for you to supply the information requested.    

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