Window of opportunity for election candidates

Anyone intending to stand as a candidate in May’s local elections is being advised to submit their nomination papers ahead of the deadline of 4pm on Tuesday, 4 April 2023.

Notices of Election have been published today (20 March) for scheduled parish and town council elections and the Westmorland and Furness Council by-election for the vacant Old Barrow and Hindpool seat following the death of Councillor Ann Thomson in January.

This means that nomination papers can now be submitted by anyone wishing to stand for election on 4 May.

Nomination packs are available from local election teams at the current Barrow Borough, Eden District and South Lakeland District councils, as well as political party agents and parish/town council clerks.

Packs have been given out to prospective candidates who have already expressed an interest in standing for election and have been distributed at prospective candidates’ briefings.

As the time allowed for submission of these papers is short, if anyone wishes to stand as a candidate they are being strongly advised to complete their nomination papers ready for submission as soon as possible. Local election teams are also encouraging candidates to make an appointment to have their nomination papers informally checked prior to submission.

Links to more information about the elections and standing as a candidate can be found on the May 2023 Local Elections page.

In order to vote on 4 May, residents must be on the electoral register and residents are being urged to ensure they are registered to vote. You can register online at

The UK Government has also introduced a requirement for voters to show photo ID when voting at a polling station at elections.

This new requirement will apply for the first time at the local elections on 4 May.

 That means voters will need to show photo ID to be allowed to vote at polling stations at any parish or town council elections, or the Westmorland and Furness Council by-election, in May.

From October 2023 this requirement for voters to show photo ID will also apply to UK General Elections.

Accepted forms of photo ID include a UK, European Economic Area (EEA) or Commonwealth passport; a UK or EEA drivers’ licence and some concessionary travel passes, such as an older person’s bus pass. Voters will be able to use expired ID if they are still recognisable from the photo.

If you don’t already have any of the accepted forms of photo ID listed, you can apply for a free voter ID document, which is known as a Voter Authority Certificate.

Applicants must be registered to vote and will need to provide their date of birth, National Insurance number and a photograph.

The deadline to apply for a Voter Authority Certificate for this May’s elections is 5pm on Tuesday, 25 April 2023.

You can apply online at

Paper forms are available from local council offices in Barrow, Kendal and Penrith.

You don’t need photo ID to vote by post, so you don’t need to apply for a Voter Authority Certificate if you choose to vote this way.

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