Borough Insight

Under canvass

Some key facts about the annual canvass currently underway.

The annual canvass is something that every council in England must do under the law:

  • We must send a household enquiry form to every household
  • We must send a reminder household enquiry form if we do not get a response
  • We must send a canvasser to help you with your household enquiry form if we still  have not had a response
  • We must use the wording given to us by the Electoral Commission
  • We must warn you that we have the power to fine you if you do not respond

The law says that you must respond to the annual canvass.canvas

Look out for the annual canvass form in the post, then check it (and if necessary update it) and respond online, by telephone or by post. 

Don’t delay – You can save time and expense to the taxpayer and avoid receiving reminders and personal visits by responding to the canvass form promptly after you have received it.

The annual canvass ensures the electoral register is up-to-date.

If you do not appear on the register, it will not only affect your right to vote, it may also affect your ability to open a bank account, get credit, a loan or a mortgage as the full register is checked by authorised credit agencies.

Do not register only when you need a mortgage or finance – due to the prescribed processes and timings that we must observe by law, it can take several weeks before your entry is visible to credit agencies.

While the next scheduled elections within the borough are the Police & Crime Commissioner elections in May 2020, you will know from the news  that there may be other elections and/or referendums before that date  - if your name is not on the electoral register, you won't be able to vote in any elections.

Just because you pay council tax does not automatically put you on the electoral register.

If you’re not currently registered to vote, the easiest way to register is online at

For more information on the annual canvass in Epsom and Ewell please see:


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