The lowest turnout in a general election was recorded in 1918 at 57.2 %, due to the end of the First World War. Between 1922 and 1997 turnout remained above 71 %. At the 2001 general election the turnout was 59.4 %; in 2005 it was 61.4 % and in 2010 it was 65.1% .
Electoral Commission reports
The Electoral Commission has published reports examining whether changing the current arrangements for voting will encourage more people to vote and there have been a number of pilots at local elections in recent years to try out some of the alternative measures suggested. These included:
The Hansard Society publishes an annual Audit of political engagement which can be found on its website; the latest report explores the decline in people’s propensity to vote.
Page last updated September 2013