Dave Page, from the NO2ID, said: "Once you are on that database, you can never come off it.
"From the moment you're registered you'll have to tell the authorities of any change in your circumstances for the rest of your life - and pay whatever fees they ask for the 'service'.
"You'll never know who's looking at your details. It won't protect our safety. It won't be convenient - except for Whitehall. This scheme is an expensive and dangerous con."
A poll of 1,731 adults across the UK, conducted by human rights campaign group Liberty, suggested six out of 10 people were unlikely to volunteer for a card.
Campaigns co-ordinator Sabina Frediani said the North West was being made an "ID card guinea pig".
"How many times can you re-design and re-launch this tired old policy?" she said.
"When will the government realise there is dwindling public support for a scheme that is as costly to our pockets as to our privacy and race relations?"