Thursday 27 October 2016

Hollyoaks stars to help encourage younger voters to register

Published 18/02/2016 | 11:46

Jennifer Metcalfe will feature in the campaign
Jennifer Metcalfe will feature in the campaign

The Electoral Commission has enlisted the support of Hollyoaks actors in a campaign to encourage young people to register to vote.

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The commission is targeting 18 to 24-year-olds and private renters with a series of adverts featuring the soap stars, which will air exclusively on Channel 4 and E4 ahead of elections later this year.

Research by the commission in 2014 found both groups are less likely to be registered.

Around 25% of 18 and 19-year-olds and 30% of 20 to 24-year-olds were unregistered, compared with just 5% of those aged 65 and over.

While more than 35% of private renters had not registered, compared with just 6% of people who own their home outright and 11% of home owners with a mortgage had not done so.

Channel 4 commissioning editor Lee Mason said Channel 4 and E4 has a "special connection" with younger TV viewers.

"I'm thrilled that Hollyoaks, in particular, can play an important role in educating young people of the importance of registering to vote and encourage them to engage with one of their most fundamental rights - the right to vote," he said.

The advert will feature actors Jennifer Metcalfe, Amanda Clapham, Jazmine Franks and Duayne Boachie.

The public have until April 18 to register to take part in polls this May, which include local council and mayoral elections as well as devolved government elections in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Press Association

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