Before you apply
You will save yourself time if you have the information and documents you'll need before you start your application.
If you are applying online, you will need the following:
- Access to an email address - need help setting up an email account?
- Your national insurance number.
- A recent passport-style photo of yourself - you can upload a digital photograph or take one with your webcam during the application (photo guidance).
If you have lived at your current address for less than three years, you may also be asked to send us proof of your address. You will be advised of this during the application.
Applying at a library
If you are applying at a library, you will need the following:
- A recent passport-style photo, with your name and date of birth on the back.
- Proof of address.
- Proof of identity and age.
If you apply by phone you need to send us a recent photo to complete the application. You may also need to send proof of address if you have lived at your current address for less than three years. We will advise you if this is the case during the application.
Documents we accept
If you going to post your documents, send a photocopy. Do not send originals, they will not be returned.
Proof of identity and age
One of the following documents is acceptable as proof of identity and proof of age.
- Birth/adoption certificate (and marriage certificate if name has changed)
- Current passport - the identification page. If your passport is not an EU passport, a copy of the visa page is also required
- Current driving licence – the counterpart of a driving licence is no longer a valid proof of identity
- Pension letter
Proof of address
One of the following documents is acceptable as proof of address:
- A pension letter
- Current driving licence – the counterpart of a driving licence is no longer a valid proof of address
- Recent utility bill*
- Bank or credit card statement*
- Current council tax bill (current financial year)
*No more than three months old
Applicants who live in hostels
If your proof of residency is for a hostel address, you will be issued with a temporary one year pass.
Your pass will be sent to the hostel address and will not be automatically renewed.