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How to vote ...

YOUR guide to casting your vote, with the introduction of all-postal voting ...

IT WILL be a combined election - for the local council and the European Parliament. In addition, changes in ward boundaries means that the city council election will be 'all-out' (that is, citizens will vote for up to three candidates per ward instead of the usual one).

There will be no polling stations at this election. Instead, registered electors will be sent a ballot paper by post and it can then be sent back to the council.

Your ballot paper will be sent to you about one week before the election. It may be issued as late as four working days before election day.

If it does not arrive, contact your local electoral registration office (or your returning officer in Scotland) by 5pm on the day before the election for a replacement ballot paper.

When you have received your ballot paper, mark your vote, get someone to sign the declaration and return both documents in the prepaid envelope. If you're sending it from abroad, you'll need to pay the postage.

Make sure your postal vote will arrive in plenty of time before the election. If it arrives after the election poll closes, it will not be counted. If it is too late to post it back, you can hand it in to any polling station in your constituency or to the returning officer on election day.

Your postal vote will be mixed with all the others before counting begins, so your vote will be kept secret.


Stuart Pike
Deputy editor specialising in politics
Alex Bell
Bethany English
District reporter
Beth Abbit
Court reporter
Jon Macpherson
Kate Watkins
Reporter specialising in communities
Garth Dawson
Photographer and columnist