Don't lose your voice - register to vote
With local elections and a referendum round the corner, Manchester residents are being reminded that they only have a month to make sure they are registered to vote.
Voters will go to the polls on Thursday 3 May to choose one councillor for each of the City Council's 32 wards, a third of the council.
The elections are being held at the same time as a citywide referendum on how Manchester is run - either by a leader who is an elected councillor chosen by the other elected councillors (which is how the council is run now) or by a mayor who is elected by voters (which would be a change from how the council is run.)
Parliament has decided that a referendum will be held in the held in 10 of the largest cities in England, including Manchester. The nine other cities are Birmingham, Bradford, Bristol, Coventry, Leeds, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield and Wakefield.
Residents are being encouraged to make sure they are registered so they can use their democratic voice in both votes.
The electoral registration deadline for both the local elections and referendum is Wednesday 18 April so voters are urged to get their applications in as soon as possible.
People who have changed their addresses or names (for instance through marriage) recently are also advised to contact the elections unit to make sure their details are up to date and anybody who isn't sure if they are registered to vote can contact the elections unit to find out.
Applying to vote is quick and easy. Residents can download an application form from the elections section of the Council's website or can ask for an application form to be sent to them by post by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 0161 234 1212.
A Manchester City Council spokesperson said: "Elections and referenda are a vital opportunity to influence important decisions on issues which affect their everyday lives.
"People can sometimes assume that because they have other dealings with the council, for instance paying their council tax, they are automatically placed on the electoral register. This is not the case. I'd encourage anyone who's in doubt whether they are registered to get in touch as soon as possible."