I doubt whether Wiltshire Council has the resources to reply to Mary Tapping of Horse Road’s letter (Wiltshire Times November 17) concerning removal from the electoral register.
However, I will be pleased if you will correct the tenor of her letter.
The council is required by statute, I think 1983, to do a household enquiry and it does this initially each year by sending out a form in August that householders are asked to sign and return or go on-line to confirm their details. This, because people move and people die and the Electoral Roll has to be up to date.
For a variety of reasons some householders fail to return the form. The properties without a returned form are on a list now loaded on a Samsung tablet. In anticipation to this, the council organise a canvass of properties throughout its electoral area where staff are engaged, dressed up in high viz jacket and bag, to knock on the door of houses with tablet in hand where no form has been received.
The canvasser will choose the times when most people will be at home, usually late afternoon or early evening and before the householder settles in for the evening. The canvasser will hopefully meet the householder at the door, obtain confirmation to include the occupants of the house on the roll. If the householder is out or fails to answer the door, this is recorded and a card posted in the letterbox advising the householder that a visit had been made and it is now left to the householder to make contact. The canvasser will record what action was taken. If contact is not made, I presume some time after the visit, the previously known occupants are removed from the roll.
How I know this, is that Horse Road was allocated to me to canvass and from my records I would have visited on either September 29 or October 3. I have canvassed this area for several years and know all the lanes and alleys in this road. The Samsung tablet used for this list will retain the actual footprint.
The council’s elections department would not have made an error and there is no conspiracy.
Peter Mundy