Turnout at British general elections has varied over the years but in recent elections, voter turnout has been less than some believe is healthy for a democracy. For example, in the 1979 election, nearly 25% of those who could have voted did not do so.

 

1832: 70.4%

 

1835: 65.0%

 

1837: 63.6%

1841: 63.5%

1847: 53.4%

 

1852: 57.9%

 

1857: 58.9%

 

1859: 63.7%

 

1865: 62.5%

 

1868: 68.5%

 

1874: 66.4%

 

1880: 72.2%

1885: 81.2%

 

1886: 74.2%

 

1892: 77.4%

 

1895: 78.4%

 

1900: 75.1%

 

1906: 83.2%

 

1910: 86.8%

 

1910: 81.6%

 

1918: 57.2%

 

1922: 73.0%

 

1923: 71.1%

 

1924: 77.0%

 

1929: 76.3%

 

1931: 76.4%

 

1935: 71.1%

 

1945: 72.8%

 

1950: 83.9%

 

1951: 82.6%

 

1955: 76.8%

 

1959: 78.7%

 

1964: 77.1%

 

1966: 75.8%

 

1970: 72.0%

 

1974: 78.8%

 

1974: 72.8%

 

1979: 76.0%