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Electoral Services

Electoral Services are responsible for the maintenance and publication of the electoral register and the administration and organisation of all elections and referendum in the Sunderland City Council area.

The electoral register is a list of all the people in Sunderland who are eligible to vote and the Electoral Registration Officer is the person appointed by the Council with the overall responsibility of maintaining it. You cannot vote if your name does not appear on the electoral register.

Two versions of the register are kept:

  • The full version of the register - which is used for limited purposes specified in law such as: elections, detecting crime (e.g. fraud), and checking credit applications
  • The open register - which is an extract of the electoral register, but is not used for elections. It can be bought by any person or organisation. Your name and address will be included in the open register unless you ask for them to be removed. You can do this by contacting Electoral Services on 0191 520 5550

Administering Elections and Referendums

Sunderland is split into 25 electoral wards for council elections, and three parliamentary constituencies for parliamentary elections.

Sunderland's Electoral Services department administer local government elections, parliamentary elections, European parliamentary elections, Police and Crime Commissioner elections and any other elections or referendums being held.

Sunderland was also the North East regional lead for the EU Referendum in 2016 and the Northumbria Police Area Returning Officer for the PCC election in May 2016, 2019 and 2021.

If you have any questions, or require any more information about registering to vote or voting, please contact us on 0191 520 5550 or by email at

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