Midlands Electoral Registers

Discussion in 'British Electoral Rolls' started by CaroleF, Mar 5, 2017.

  1. CaroleF

    CaroleF Well-Known Member

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    I have been trying to trace several family members in Birmingham using Electoral Registers on both Ancestry (I have a subscription) and the Midlands Historical Data site. The second I find easier to use/find people, though a charge is involved.

    I have been looking at records between 1925 and 1965. They have generally proved very useful in supporting the 'who lived where' family stories, but show someone at a particular address in 1960 and 1962 when I had thought they died in 1957 or 1958. I have yet to 'prove' when this person died but have recently sent off for 2 death certificates (1957 and 1958) only to find this same person apparently alive in 1960 and 1962!

    So ..... does anyone know how reliable these Electoral Rolls are? Or how frequently they were updated back then? If the authorities were not informed of a death or change of residence did they assume the same people lived there from one year to the next?

    Any helpful observations gratefully received.
    Carole
     
  2. Sis

    Sis Rootles out resources!

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    Different country but I worked for short while for our Electoral Commission and they only make changes to the electoral rolls/registers when advised by the person concerned or family if someone dies
     
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  3. mikejee

    mikejee Well-Known Member

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    I'm pretty sure a separate form was sent out every year. I suppose if the people did not bother to return it then the entry might be just repeated, but don't think it was policy to do so.
     
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  4. CaroleF

    CaroleF Well-Known Member

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    The same as in the USA then (and the basis I think for Trump's claims of 'electoral fraud') Seems an odd way of going about things to me. Is that *still* the case in Australia?
     
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  5. CaroleF

    CaroleF Well-Known Member

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    I know I receive a form each year now, but don't know how things operated in England back in the '50s and '60s. (I was either too young to vote, or living with my parents who would have completed a form if it existed or out of the country for most of that time)
    Does anyone know if forms were sent out each year back then? Or know how I could find out, please?
     
  6. Sis

    Sis Rootles out resources!

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    Here in Western Australia it is. We just get the odd ad reminding people who are not on the roll to enrol by a certain date when there's an election coming, like a State election we have on Saturday.
     
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  7. Archie's Mum

    Archie's Mum Always digging up clues

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    Same here Sis. It's not up to the Electoral Commission to chase you but you to do the right thing, legally, and change your address within a certain time.
    Not sure what we did when Dad passed away but I think Mum/sister informed them.
    Also, here in Oz voting is compulsory.
     
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  8. Bonzo Dog

    Bonzo Dog Still the Mad Scientist?

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    Two Birmingham electoral register returns from the late 1940's for my grandmother are a puzzle. They infer she had 2 lodgers yet at no time did I see anyone other than my grandma and step uncle, and I spent almost as much time with her as I did at home.
     
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  9. Sis

    Sis Rootles out resources!

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    @CaroleF This site might help you. I haven't actually looked through it, but on the face of it it seems a possibility. If you can't find the answer maybe you could email them.

    Code:
    http://www.electoralregisters.org.uk/
     
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  10. Elsiesgirl

    Elsiesgirl Well-Known Member

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    This is something I'd never thought of. We do get regular forms to fill in here but I'm not sure it's every year, but always when there is an election or a local election due. Thinking about it, years ago when we lived in a different town and Margaret Thatcher brought in the poll tax, we were chased for my son's poll tax though he moved out over a year before it came in. The council would not believe that he did not live with us even though I gave them his address. I was publicly accused of fiddling when I went in to explain once. I came out of the office in tears and wrote a letter of complaint. I was in constant fear of bailiffs but I refused to pay it. They eventually stopped when the poll tax was stopped.
     
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  11. Sis

    Sis Rootles out resources!

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    Goodness that's awful!:mad:
     
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  12. CaroleF

    CaroleF Well-Known Member

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    That's interesting @Bonzo Dog. Thank you for that info. There are apparently (sometimes) lodgers at the homes of a couple of the people I have been tracing in Birmingham too. Trouble is I have no way of knowing whether these are errors. Happily, for me, it doesn't affect what I was really trying to find out too much.
     
  13. Ma-dotcom

    Ma-dotcom A Bonza Little Digger!

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    Some 'better than we' experts need a quick thump to bring them in line with reality, & stop the bullying [ & that's what it was] of locals.
     
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  14. CaroleF

    CaroleF Well-Known Member

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    Thank you Sis. I'll take a look.
     
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  15. CaroleF

    CaroleF Well-Known Member

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    Ahh ... so different areas in the UK operate differently, do they? I hadn't realised that. Where I live (Bath and NE Somerset) we get a form to 'update' Electoral Roll registration every year.

    Your Poll Tax story is horrendous - as was the whole Poll Tax saga!
     
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  16. CaroleF

    CaroleF Well-Known Member

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    That site is really useful, Sis. As yet I can't spot anything that would help to clear up whether my relative really was still alive in 1960 and 1962, but it does have, for example, an explanation of the codes against some peoples' names in Registers pre 1948 and that may prove interesting/useful to me. They were something I had often wondered about. So .... thank you again.
     
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  17. Sis

    Sis Rootles out resources!

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    You're welcome.:)
     
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  18. Elsiesgirl

    Elsiesgirl Well-Known Member

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    Yes it was at the time, they obviously weren't checking properly, so that tells me the electoral roll was not completely accurate at that time, so probably not in the 50's either
     
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  19. Elsiesgirl

    Elsiesgirl Well-Known Member

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    Too true
     
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  20. Elsiesgirl

    Elsiesgirl Well-Known Member

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    It certainly was
     

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