HC Deb 14 January 1964 vol 687 c11W
55. Mr. Woodburn

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he is aware that a number of young persons who will be 21 years of age at the date of the election will not be able to vote because they are not on the register, and that many young people cannot vote till they are 24 or 25 years of age; and whether he will introduce legislation to allow persons to vote if they are 21 years of age when an election takes place.

Mr. Brooke

The law provides that persons who have reached the age of 21 by 10th October, the qualifying date for a register, are eligible to vote at any election held after 15th February in the following year: those reaching the age of 21 after 10th October and before 15th June in the following year are eligible to vote at an election held on or after 2nd October. With the system of annual registers it would not be practicable to combine arrangements allowing persons to vote from the day they reached the age of 21, though I do not regard the present arrangements, which date from 1949, as ideal