You can only vote in elections if your name is on the Register of Electors.
The following people are allowed to vote:
- if you are eighteen years or over.
- all British, Commonwealth, Irish and other European Union citizens.
- overseas electors
- members of HM Forces and their spouses
- crown servants employed outside the United Kingdom
- European citizens are allowed to vote in European and Local Elections only.
- overseas Electors are allowed to vote in Parliamentary and European Elections only.
If you weren’t registered previously, you can register under the new system at www.gov.uk/yourvotematters
Poll cards are delivered shortly before an Election. Each member of the household who is eligible to vote should receive a poll card which informs them of the date of the election, where their polling station is and the hours of poll. You do not need to take the poll card with you to be able to vote.
- Polling times for all elections are 7am to 10pm
- on arrival at your designated polling station, the Presiding Officer will ask you to confirm your name and address and will issue you with a ballot paper.
- the ballot paper will be marked with an official stamp.
- you should take the ballot paper to the voting booth and mark with a "X" the candidate you wish to vote for.
- fold the ballot paper and deposit it in the ballot box.
What if I am unable to get to the Polling Station on Election Day?
If you are unable to go to your Polling Station on Election Day, you can apply to vote by post or proxy (a proxy is someone who votes on your behalf).
- if you have a permanent physical incapacity, are registered blind or receive the higher rate of mobility component of the disability living allowance for a physical disability you are eligible for a permanent postal or proxy vote. The form requires the declaration that the information is correct from a doctor, nurse or warden of a home.
- if your work frequently takes you overseas
- if you will be on holiday when the election is taking place
- if you have moved house since you registered and are unable to go to your old polling station.
- if you are working during all hours of voting, for example as a member of the election staff.
Voting for the first time
If you will be 18 before December of the following year you should be included on the electoral registration form together with other members of the household who are eligible to vote.
- You do not have to be 18 at the time the form is filled in.
- Have your say – it’s your future and your council.
A copy of the Council's "Voting Guide for the Young Voter" can be downloaded here or alternatively contact the Elections unit. For more information on the Electoral Register please visit the Electoral Register Page.
Please contact the Electoral Registration Officer who will advise which form you need to complete.
For further details write to: -
Electoral Services and Land Charges Section.
Unit 2 Maritime Business Park,
Maritime Industrial Estate,
Tel: 01443 490100
Fax: 01443 485776