My honourable friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Office (Meg Hillier) has today made the following Written Ministerial Statement.
I am pleased to announce the extension of the National Identity Service from the beginning of January 2010.
On 30 June, the Home Secretary confirmed that we would accelerate the rollout of identity cards by extending the initial coverage from Greater Manchester to other locations in the north west of England early in 2010. Following a successful implementation of the National Identity Service in Greater Manchester and at Manchester and London City airports on 30 November, the next phase of the rollout will be commenced from Monday 4 January 2010. From that date, most citizens living or working in the north west will be eligible to make applications for identity cards at a fee of £30.
Initially, they will be able to apply at the offices of the Identity and Passport Service (IPS) in Manchester city centre. From February 2010, they will also be able to apply at new enrolment facilities in existing IPS offices in Liverpool and Blackburn.
To find out more about identity cards, register interest in obtaining a card or to request an application pack, visit www.direct.gov.uk/identity or call 0300 330 0000.