Voters’ rolls, or electoral registers, list those people eligible to vote in local, parliamentary and other national elections. Special Collections and the City Archives both hold voters' rolls for Glasgow. In addition the Archives has voters' rolls for areas absorbed into Glasgow as well as for areas of the former Strathclyde Regional Council.
Not everyone had the vote. Very few people were eligible pre-1832, when the system was reformed. Subsequent acts of parliament in 1867 and 1884 further increased the numbers of males eligible to vote. In 1918 all men over 21 were eligible to vote and all women over 30.
Only males could vote from 1832 to 1918 in parliamentary elections. Women could vote in municipal elections. Unmarried women and married women, not living with their husband, who were proprietors or tenants, could vote for: burgh councillors from 1882 and county councillors from 1889. In 1930 all men and women over 21 were eligible to vote.
This webpage lists the key dates relating to voting rights in the UK.
The voters' rolls include the following information:
- first name and surname
- place of abode
- occupation (until 1918)
- nature of qualification for the vote (until 1918)
- address where property is located (until 1918)
Special Collections has the voters' rolls and street indices for Glasgow. These include:
- 1846-current year, parliamentary elections
- 1872-1885, municipal elections, persons living outside the parliamentary boundaries
- 1898/9, municipal elections, males living outside the parliamentary boundaries
- 1900/1901, municipal elections
- 1885-1892, municipal elections, female voters
Registers were not compiled for some of the war years: 1915-1917 or 1941-1944.
Voters' rolls are on open access with the exception of the most recent ten years. To arrange access to the current voters' roll, please contact Glasgow City Council's Electoral Registration Office. Rolls for the the remainder of the most recent ten years are closed to public access.
Conditions apply for providing copies from the historical voters’ rolls. Please ask staff for assistance.
In addition to the standard voters' rolls for Glasgow, the City Archives also holds the following:
- Glasgow, manuscript volumes, arranged alphabetically, 1833-1854
- Glasgow, absent voters, 1920, which lists names of armed forces. Transcription available online
- Areas absorbed into Glasgow, including: Govan, Hillhead, Kelvindale, Partick and Pollokshaws, municipal and parliamentary elections, 1890s to 1912 (incomplete)
- Rutherglen, 1832-1931, 1926 and 1928-1936 (part of Glasgow voters' rolls), 1975-1996
- Dumbartonshire, Lanarkshire, Renfrewshire, mainly 20th century, with occasional early lists of voters as part of Family and Estate Records