The restriction on voting in UK elections for any UK citizen who has not lived in the country for more than 15 years is to be scrapped, according to Chris Skidmore, Minister for the Constitution.
This was an issue which cropped up a number of times during the referendum campaign – and by no means all of the frustrated expats unable to vote were remain supporters. The Campaign for an Independent Britain received a number of e-mails from expats who were very upset to be denied the chance to vote to take the UK out of the EU.
The statement mentioned elections but not referendums. It also talked of people who “have lived in the UK”. In other words, it does not appear to cover British citizens who have never lived here.
The comments to articles about this proposed reform therefore unsurprisingly indicate that not everyone is thrilled by this planned change, but it does go some way towards addressing a frustration felt by a number of people who contacted our organisation durng the referendum period.